Luc Langevin | The limits of virtual magic

Luc Langevin |  The limits of virtual magic

Like several artists on a forced break, Luc Langevin has decided to turn to the web for his new show, entitled Interconnected. However, when it comes to magic, this formula has its limits, as we saw by attending an online performance on Tuesday.

Let’s say it straight away: Luc Langevin did not lose his hand during the pandemic. Its tricks continue to mystify the public, even virtual. Those involving playing cards are particularly successful, especially one where magic appears in the hands of all spectators (who must have had a deck of cards in their possession). We will not say more, but the word “flabbergasté” was pronounced at the home of the author of these lines …

The magician also uses virtual technologies with great skill, in particular by sending emails to spectators. Something that would have been impossible to do in a traditional show. The studio that serves as a backdrop is also full of trompe-l’oeil and elements playing with perspectives that work very well on camera.

Moreover, the reactions of the Premium audience (those who paid extra to appear on screen and interact with the magician) proved that we were not the only ones to be speechless after certain turns. It was exclaimed in the living rooms, we can confirm it to you!

But there is a but: this spectacle does not manage to take a cruising speed, and it is not the fault of Luc Langevin. With the virtual platform, exchanges with spectators are (much) more laborious. Imagine a big Zoom meeting with 25 people. Microphones that we forgot to open, embarrassed children who refuse to answer, spectators who say out loud what they should be thinking, inaudible mumbled answers. Each time, the excitement falls flat. And the pace of the show suffers.

Luc Langevin manages most of the time to fill in the gaps with jokes or funny comments addressed to those he questions. He easily establishes a warm contact with his spectators, necessarily a little uncomfortable to be questioned while they are under the duvet, in the living room. And the magician’s pleasure in being on camera is evident. The pandemic has been a long one for him too.

But to the impossible, no one is held, and some laps which lengthen unduly end up making us drop out.

In addition, the proximity of the camera sometimes plays nasty tricks on the magician. There are apparent seams at times and less natural gestures that would go unnoticed on stage but become more suspicious on screen.

That being said, Luc Langevin is doing well in conditions that are far from ideal. The Premium spectators also served him with fed applause on the screen at the end of the show. Several regular spectators – the ones you don’t see and don’t hear – probably did the same.

Interconnected, by Luc Langevin. More are planned for February.

3 and a half stars

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