The art of illusion is a lucrative industry, it is very easy to get lost amongst the smoke and mirrors. America’s Got Talent quarterfinalist Rob Lake’s success is no illusion, and his name has become a hallmark amongst the entertainment industry. Lake’s illusions have awed millions worldwide, and he has been regarded as the top illusionist in the world by Caesars Entertainment. Success is never straightforward, we had the chance to sit down with Lake, and learn the secrets to making memorable shows like his.
Interviewer: “How did you build prestige in your industry and business?”
Lake: “I think I’m not afraid to work hard to get the desired result. For example, I have spent years, sometimes decades, perfecting an illusion until it is ready for the show. I’ve spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and years in development, only to have to go back to the drawing board because it isn’t right. For me, it is all about the audience experience- and I want that to be perfect in every detail. If it isn’t ready, and isn’t in line with my vision, it is not going into the show yet. But when it does, I know I’ve accomplished my vision. When I have the idea for an illusion, it’s not just a trick, a gotcha, or a fooled-you moment. It’s a theatrical experience. The mood, the setting, the pacing, the vibe is all just as important as the magic effects. And, it all has to work together to feel like a storytelling experience for the audience.“
Interviewer: “What makes you stand out in your industry?”
Lake: “My shows are grand in scale (5 x 53-foot semi trucks to transport the show from theatre to theatre), and extremely theatrical. It’s not just a bunch of tricks, it is a theatrical experience. This isn’t a social media camera trick kind of thing. It is a theatrical production of wonder and large-scale magic. Things that take years to produce, and are best experienced live, in person, in a theatre, not on a small screen in the hand. I create and design my own illusions, and they are one-of-a-kind.
Interviewer: “How did you get started in the industry of illusions?”
Lake: “When I was 10 years old, I saw a magic show. It was like an epiphany, I knew that is exactly what I would be doing with my life. I immediately got started- I went to the library and got every book I could find on magic. I started doing small shows, and learning and saving money to buy larger equipment for a larger show. Incrementally I built my show up over a few decades.“
Interviewer: “What are the biggest challenges of your life and how did you overcome them?”
Lake: “Every goal is a challenge, I do the impossible, afterall. From Illusion creation I’ve learned that things are never what they really seem. Most times we create “illusions” or excuses or scenarios in our minds that may not be accurate. When you strip these things away, the inauthentic things we tell ourselves away, most challenges can become much simpler. Not usually easier, but simpler.”
Interviewer: “Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?”
Lake: “Still making magic, and making people smile, on tour, onstage on screen and more!”
If you’d like to see the magic for yourself, visit www.roblake.com, or find him on all social platforms @roblakemagic
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