ALEX: Today’s Deaf Business Spotlight will be on Matthew “Magic” Morgan and his Little Magic Theatre in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. He and his wife Liliana are well-known Deaf magicians who have traveled extensively in all 50 U.S. states and in over 30 countries, giving magic and comedy shows. They now have their own theater. Check it out!
MELISSA: Hi, I’m Melissa Yingst, Convo Community Curator. I’m here in Wisonsin to visit a Deaf-owned business and its owner, “Magic” Morgan of Little Magic Theatre! His performance tonight is actually sold out! I’m looking forward to seeing more.
MATTHEW: Hi, my name’s Matthew Morgan. I’m the “Magic” Morgan. And this is…
LILIANA: I’m Liliana.
MATTHEW: I’d like to proudly introduce our theatre called Magic Morgan’s little, sweet, Little Magic Theatre.
This place may be small, yes, the “World’s Smallest Theatre” so it might seem impossible to do magic. You can do magic here! Come on in!
LILIANA: I’m preparing and getting things ready for the exciting tonight’s special!
MATTHEW: Yes, we are always excited. When you walk in, it feels good. I love the shows.
LILIANA: Our friends and families are here. I love it.
MATTHEW: Come on in!
This stage is pretty long, about 16 feet in length and 8 feet in width. We can hold up to 50 people here, more even! But due to fire code and safety reasons we keep it at 50 people. It’s beautiful here.
People have asked how Liliana and I met. Back in 2002, I was traveling the world performing. I was at Moscow, Russia one day and I somehow ended up meeting her. We talked and had lots of theatre skills in common. I do magic, and she does dancing and magic shows, too. We both had the same experiences, so I was fascinated with her. We talked all the time. We eventually fell in love. We missed each other, so she flew to America. We got to know each other more, then she moved to America and we got married. That’s how we met.
LILIANA: We’ve been and worked together for 15 years. We travel the world together. I love it.
[TALKING TO MATTHEW] I was first attracted to you when you did your trick with the dove. It was amazing. I thought it was impossible to pull off. I asked if you were hearing, and you replied, “No, I’m Deaf!” I was shocked at that. I asked if you could do anything else, and you said, “Yes! I can do everything.” I fell in love, and he taught me many things. I became a female magician and we both now work together.
ROB: Hi, my name’s Rob Kordus. I work for Magic Morgan as the assistant crew member and I sell tickets to our customers here.
MATTHEW: In all my travels seeing different magic show businesses, it made me realize I wanted to be the first Deaf-owned magic-run theatre. I wanted to do it, but I was busy traveling, too. Liliana and I got married and had two beautiful children. We still traveled without the children but we were missing them badly. So, we decided to settle for our family’s sake. We both wanted to set up a theatre, so we looked for a location all over the U.S. We looked and narrowed our search to Wisconsin. We chose Lake Geneva because the Deaf community’s strong here. Chicago is near over there, and the Deaf school is only 8 miles away. My home’s close to everything. It’s perfect.
How often do we perform? During Spring, we perform during the weekend which means Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. In the Summer, we perform through all 7 days. We do it during the week at 8 pm, then on Friday we do two shows. Three shows on Saturday, two shows on Sunday, and then back to one show a night during the week. We’ve been doing this on a regular basis.
It was a challenge to make the business a success. It was a challenge to face the audience and have the hearing member see our Deaf world. We both meet eye to eye. We worked through it to prove that Deaf people can do it. It’s been a success since!
ALEX: Amazing — a little magic theater right in downtown area. You can check out their website to see their show times — www.magicmorgan.com.