CZECH ILLUSIONIST DANIELA MAXOVÁ COMES TO OPEN THIS YEAR'S BRATISLAVA AUTO SHOW

Now you see it, now you don't

THE FIRST person to make a car disappear was American magician David Copperfield. However, this great illusionist has never made it happen on this side of Atlantic.
The first person to try this trick in Europe will be Czech illusionist Daniela Maxová. And if she succeeds, she will be the first woman to make a car vanish into thin air.
"An orange Mercedes will levitate and then disappear," Maxová explains.


DON'T try this at home: The magician demonstrates her skills.
photo: Courtesy of Daniela Maxová

THE FIRST person to make a car disappear was American magician David Copperfield. However, this great illusionist has never made it happen on this side of Atlantic.

The first person to try this trick in Europe will be Czech illusionist Daniela Maxová. And if she succeeds, she will be the first woman to make a car vanish into thin air.

"An orange Mercedes will levitate and then disappear," Maxová explains.

Maxová will open the 13th annual Bratislava Auto Show on March 18 with her new disappearing act. She was offered the job by one of the show's exhibitors, Mercedes, when she was approached to present their Mercedes Sportcoupé.

"[To make a car disappear] is one of the bigger tricks many illusionists dream of performing. I, too, have dreamt about it. When Mercedes asked me to make this happen, I was quick to agree."

The 26-year-old illusionist says that she has been working day and night over the last two months to prepare for this show, but that there are still things that need to be improved. Apart from the specially designed set, lots of fireworks and lights, she needs a good and reliable team around her. This time she will be assisted by around 50 people.


"THE MERCEDES has to disappear."
photo: Courtesy of Daniela Maxová

"Today, I worked on it for over six hours and it is still not completely finished," Maxová told The Slovak Spectator on March 7. "Things are still being altered, re-worked ... and we are under a lot of time pressure."

However, the illusionist does not allow for the possibility that the trick might not work out. "The Mercedes has to disappear ... and the best possible outcome would be if I then found it in my garage," she says with a laugh.

A native of the western Czech town of Plzeň, Maxová moved to Prague at the age of 18 in order to devote her life to professional illusionism, the art of performing tricks that deceive the eye. She says illusionists learn certain principles for basic tricks in the beginning and then they have to go in their own direction.

"I thought of calling up Copperfield and asking him, 'Hey, David, could you send me some ideas?' but I don't think he would agree to that," she jokes.

Maxová, who wanted to be an illusionist since childhood, has enjoyed big success in Japan. In 1996, she won the Entertainers World Cup there and has performed in front of the Japanese public 14 times.

"The Japanese like to have fun. They can be like children, they like to be drawn into the magic, into the world of illusions," says Maxová, who plans to visit Japan again this summer.


Daniela Maxová
photo: Courtesy of Daniela Maxová

The Mercedes trick Maxová will perform in Bratislava will be her second large-object vanishing project. She made a motorcycle disappear on the Czech television channel Nova after it was chosen the Motorcycle of the Year. In the near future she plans to do the same with the popular tourist destination Petřínská rozhledna (the large lookout rising above Prague).

"I will then return it to where it was," she promises.

What about doing something more useful, like making some members of parliament vanish, for example?

"If somebody came to me with such an offer, we could make a deal," she laughs. "I can make anything disappear."

What: Illusionist show.
When: March 18 at 19:00 (broadcast on Czech TV and possibly on Slovak Markíza).
Where: Congress Centre Incheba, Viedenská cesta 3-7, Bratislava-Petržalka.
Tel: 02/6727-1111, 02/6727-2138.
Admission: limited.
For more information on illusionist Daniela Maxová visit www.danielamaxova.cz.

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