By Sarah Lang The Lebanon Reporter
---- — Los Angeles magician Blake Vogt turned drew some attention last weekend with his first-ever one-man-show called “Odd Man Out,” with three performances at the Theatre at the Milk Building.
Vogt, a Lebanon High School graduate, returned to Lebanon to try out this new material, claiming hometown advantage. He was nervous for his first show, on Friday, he said, but he got better with each performance. All shows sold out within two weeks, with a total of 480 tickets sold.
“The crowds have been amazing, and I’ve received good feedback,” Vogt said before going on stage for his final show Sunday. “It’s so cool to see people I haven’t seen for a while, and to see them all in one place has been great.”
Vogt wanted to be a magician as a child, growing up in Lebanon and following around local magician Marc Lehmann. His dreams followed him to college at Purdue University, where he entered as a design major, hoping to design illusions for magicians like David Copperfield and David Blaine. One professor told him his aspirations were not realistic. But after working with both Copperfield and Blaine, he received a letter from this professor. It stated he saw Vogt’s Facebook update to “illusion creator for David Copperfield,” and he apologized, stating he was wrong, and wished him well.
“I’m living proof that just because someone tells you that you can’t do something, that’s not always right,” Vogt said in his show. The show was a narrative, detailing Vogt’s journey from magic-obsessed child to professional magician today. His work with Blaine, called “David Blaine: Real or Magic,” will air on Nov. 19, at 9:30 p.m. on ABC.
Eventually, Vogt became tired of doing other magician’s tricks and started creating his own. This was his first show, which was made up of only original illusions.
Carmel and John Brand attended the show Sunday, and afterward shared memories of seeing Vogt running around Lebanon Middle School with a deck of cards.
“He chased his dream and caught it,” John said. Carmel added that he is very natural at it.
The Brands’ son, Justin, was Vogt’s roommate one year at Purdue. The two also played tennis together at LHS. Even still, Vogt never shared any magic secrets with him.
“He’s one of the nicest guys I know, and everyone in Lebanon wishes him the best,” Justin said. “I hear about him on the road, but it was nice to finally see him in action.”
The audiences were filled with family and friends of Vogt. After the Sunday show, Vogt’s great uncle, Kenny Limp, pulled him aside.
“You have the talent,” he told Vogt. “If you have another show, I’ll be back for it.”
Vogt plans to return to Lebanon within a year to perform the show once more. There were enough people who contacted him, unable to get a ticket, that he could fill another show. He also hopes to create more shows and perform once a year in Lebanon.