On Saturday, Oct. 7, magician Jason Purdy will be performing at the Redfern Arts Center. Purdy is a Keene native who has wowed audiences at Keene State College in the past for orientation and other events on campus. However, this is his first time taking the stage at the Redfern Arts Center.

Purdy offers his talents for a variety of events including fund-raisers, school shows, kid’s birthday parties and camp and recreation programs. His performances can vary from wide-scale illusions, to more classic or intimate tricks, according to his website. As for what he will specifically perform during his time at KSC, it is a secret to be revealed the day-of.

However, Director of the Redfern Arts Center Shannon Mayers said, “[The stage] gives him the opportunity to do his bigger illusions and tricks on a stage, rather than a smaller place, like a birthday party.”

Mayers added this is why the performance will be hosted in the Main Theatre, rather than in a recital hall.

Purdy said he is most excited that this event is open not just to students, but also to families.

“I’m definitely looking forward to performing for the younger kids and seeing their reactions to [the performance]”, said Purdy. Mayers said she had a similar enthusiasm about the event being family-oriented.

“[The Redfern staff] wanted to expand our family programming because it has been so successful. We wanted to offer something in the fall, as well as the winter, which is when we host most of our family programming events,” said Mayers.

Mayers said she is excited for the interactive aspect of a magic performance. “Our past shows have been largely musical, but kids want to get up and move around, and it gives folks the opportunity to take pictures. I know that I’m a mom myself and I was always grateful to see those kind of activities offered.”

This show is not exclusively put on for children, however. This show is open to people of all ages.

“I’m looking forward to entertaining a variety of minds and seeing that variety of people in the audience,” said Purdy.

This magic performance differs from the usual musical and theatrical performances put on by the Redfern.

KSC sophomore Genie Schowetsky said, “I think it’s really cool when events that are different from the norm are put on by the school; I think people really appreciate that when they see it.”

Mayers stresses the importance of offering events at the Redfern for all ages, not just college students.

“It is our commitment to be able to serve the community with family programming that doesn’t exist so much in our region. The Colonial Theatre has educational programs for school-aged kids, but this offers something for a slightly younger audience as well,” said Mayers.

College students can still enjoy the show though.

“It seems like something college kids would be more into than most people would think,” said Schowetsky. “It just sounds like something that’s fun and a good way to switch things up in our routine during the week.”

Purdy said he is just happy “to be able to bring happiness and wonder to the audience and be able to work for [himself] and enjoy what [he is] doing.”

“I imagine there will be a lot of squealing from the audience. I think people are really going to enjoy it,” said Mayers.

To learn more about Purdy and his events, you can visit his site: Jason Purdy Magic.

Rachel Vitello can be contacted at rvitello@kscequinox.com

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