Magic may take sleight of hand, but it also takes a ton of energy.
For Gary Savard, a Chilliwack-based magician, it means pulling off 21 shows in two weeks. He’s traveling around to that many Fraser Valley Regional Libraries over spring break, bringing with him his high-energy, fun magic show.
“I’ll be doing two shows a day, with the exception of one day,” he explains. But he’s looking forward to the fast-paced schedule, because of the joy the audience brings to the table.
“What makes me happy doing magic is the kids,” he says. “That’s where all my energy is going right now.”
He began his career on stage about 30 years ago, and learned early on that improv is his wheelhouse. It’s where he feels more comfortable, and where he excels.
“I wanted to do something fun,” he says. “I tried guitar, but realized I couldn’t be Elvis in a day. I found I was great at improv, but not so good at reading (lines).”
And when dealing with kids, who can really say the darnedest things, having a knack for improv is crucial.
He’s constantly working on his act, honing his skills and finetuning his character. It helps being part of the Fraser Valley Magic Circle, which meets once a month to learn from each other and special speakers.
But his big influences are David Copperfield, and Canadian magician and illusionist Doug Henning.
“David Copperfield always had a story,” Savard says, and that’s part of what makes magic so enthralling for live audiences. Even though many magicians use the same basic principles for their tricks, it’s the stage play and storytelling that sets them apart as individual artists.
Gary Savard will stop at all three Chilliwack area libraries on his spring break tour. He visits Sardis Library on March 20 at 2 p.m., Yarrow Library on March 22 at 11 a.m., and Chilliwack on March 23 at 2 p.m.
He also stops in Pitt Meadows, Abbotsford, the Muriel Arnason Library, Aldergrove, Clearbrook, Mission, Tsawwassen, North Delta, Langley, Brookswood, Ladner, Walnut Grove, Maple Ridge, Terry Fox, Hope, White Rock and Murrayville. These are free, ticketed events. Tickets will be available one week prior to each event.
Savard is just one many special guests dropping by the libraries over spring break. Other special events planned throughout the two weeks, including a scavenger hunt, sand art, movies, and more.
Check with your local library for registration information where required.
• Spring Break Scavenger Hunt: Celebrating 20th Anniversary of Harry Potter — Visit the Yarrow Library for some Spring Break Scavenger Hunt fun. Read the clues and follow the map and remember X marks the spot. Participants may enter to win the treasure. March 11 to March 25.
• Sand Art — Spring into an art activity at the Sardis Library and create beautiful and colourful sand art. Svetlana from Sparkling Ideas will teach you how to make your glittering sand art. For ages 4-10. This is a ticketed event. Tickets will be available at the Sardis Library starting one week before the event. Sardis Library: Tuesday, March 14, 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
• Spring Break Movie Matinee — Families are welcome to enjoy a movie and popcorn in our programming room. Chilliwack Library: Tuesday, March 14, 2 to 4 p.m.
• 3D Printer Demo — Come and be amazed by a 3D printer in action. Watch and learn about how this technology works, learn about the software needed to design for the 3D printer and maybe even walk away with a small 3D printer memento. The Fraser Valley MakerSpace is proud to showcase one of its 3D printers made locally in B.C. Sardis Library: Wednesday, March 15, 3 to 5 p.m.
• Spin, Pop, Boom with Mad Science — The audience will be amazed with the Mad Scientist is able to defy gravity in this energetic and spectacular special event. Didgeridoo tubes, foaming hands and steaming chemical reactions will introduce children to a world of exciting chemistry. Chilliwack Library: Wednesday, March 15, 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
• Art Afternoon for Tweens & Teens — We supply the materials, tweens and teens can get those creative muscles working. Ages 9-14. Snacks and maybe even pizza will be provided. Chilliwack Library: Thursday, March 16, 2 to 3:30 p.m.
• Explore Your Inner Artist with John Le Flock — Over the years, local artist and instructor John le Flock has helped many young artists develop creative skills and techniques. Learn basic drawing and cartooning skills and how to create facial expressions. You will also learn how to create sunset for beginners, using acrylic paint. All supplies will be provided. Registration is required. Sardis Library: Friday, March 17 (for 6-8 year olds), 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Sardis Library: Thursday, March 23 (for 9-12 year olds), 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
• Radical Raptors — Kids of all ages are invited to see falconry first hand. Join us for an interactive birds of prey presentation put on by the Radical Raptors falconry centre. Professional trainers will promote the education and understanding of raptors through an exciting presentation. Chilliwack Library: Wednesday, March 22, 2 to 3 p.m.
• Now That’s Magic with Gary Savard — Join Gary for an interactive magic show that’s sure to amaze the whole family. Gary is an award-winning magician who has performed in Canada and the United States. Now he’s here to add some magic to your spring break. (See above)
• Urban Safari — Meet exotic animals up close and personal. These creatures have been rescued or turned over to the great folks at Urban Safari. Seeing them will encourage curiosity and build an understanding of the importance of conservation and respect for wild animals. This is a ticketed event. Tickets will be available at the Sardis Library starting one week before the event. Sardis Library: Friday, March 24, 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
• Egg Drop Challenge with Fraser Valley Makerspace — Tweens and teens come experience some hands-on engineering and attempt to construct something to help an egg survive an eight-foot drop. Suitable for ages 9 and up. Registration is required. Chilliwack Library: Saturday, March 25, 2 to 3:30 p.m.