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Illusionist Michaels bringing big-stage show to AF audiences

Meet and greet

Illusionist Jason Michaels shows a card trick to an Airman. He will present "Jason Michaels Live," a big-stage show during his fall 2017 U.S. Air Force tour. (Courtesy Jason Michaels)

Jason Michaels, illusionist

Illusionist Jason Michaels will present "Jason Michaels Live," a big-stage, interactive show during his fall 2017 U.S. Air Force tour. (Courtesy Jason Michaels)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO LACKLAND, Texas — Illusionist Jason Michaels is bringing his big-stage, all-ages interactive show to 18 Air Force installations this fall.

“We run the gamut from comedy, to mystery, interactivity and silliness in the ‘Jason Michaels Live’ show,” said the Nashville-based entertainer. “This show plays easily for hundreds of people. I take everything I’ve enjoyed performing throughout my career, and put it into one show. I guarantee audiences will have an experience they won’t forget.”

“This is the second Air Force tour for Michaels,” said Tom Edwards, Chief of Air Force Entertainment for the Air Force Services Activity.

“His previous 2017 tour was exceptional because of his rapport with the audience. Jason has a tremendous story of resiliency, and how magic provided him with an outlet during a trying time in his life. He uses his personal experiences to encourage others to pursue their dreams and overcome the challenges they may have in their lives,” Edwards said.

Michaels said he learned to do card tricks as a high school student to impress his friends. He bought a how-to book and eventually made his way to a magic shop and was forever intrigued.

“I continued the hobby in college, and after college I got a job working for an illusionist. Eventually, I went out on my own,” said Michaels, who includes storytelling in his performances and is the author of “You Can Do the Impossible, Too!”

Performing for Airmen and their families is a way for Michaels to honor his own.

“My grandfather was in the Air Force. My mother grew up on Air Force bases. I feel like I’m serving you folks — my show is one thing I can share to bring smiles and laughter to those who serve. I love the Air Force family,” he said.

Michaels added that Air Force audiences are diverse and responsive.

“You guys bring out everybody: kids, older folks, young adults. They all participate,” he said.

Comedy magician Ben Young is the opening act and will participate in the main event along with magician’s assistant Jamie Keating. Young appeared on Penn and Teller’s “Fool Us” show on the CW network in September 2016.

Michaels said he, Young and Keating enjoy meeting Airmen and learning more about various aspects of Air Force duties and life.

“I love learning about Air Force career fields and just getting base tours, as our schedule allows. We’ve had the opportunity to do some amazing stuff, like experiencing a flight simulator. But meeting the folks on base, saying thank you and shaking hands — we love that,” he said.

The tour began at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, Sept. 23, and included JB Langley-Eustis, Virginia, Sept. 26; Seymour-Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, Sept. 28; and JB Charleston, South Carolina, Sept. 30. Michaels also performs at MacDill AFB, Florida, Oct. 3; Tyndall AFB, Florida, Oct. 5; Hurlburt Field, Florida, Oct. 7; Eglin AFB, Florida, Oct. 8; Arnold AFB, Tennessee, Oct. 12; Columbus AFB, Mississippi, Oct. 13; Little Rock AFB, Arkansas, Oct. 14; Whiteman AFB, Missouri, Oct. 17; Offutt AB, Nebraska, Oct. 19; Buckley AFB, Colorado, Denver, Oct. 21; Peterson AFB, Colorado, Oct. 22; Holloman AFB, New Mexico, Oct. 24; JB San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, Oct. 26; and JB San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Oct. 27.

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