On my way to do a private magic show: I never expected to see this....

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On my way to do a private magic show: I never expected to see this....

So, I'm walking up to house to perform a private magic show in Powell, OH.  The host had told me please make sure you enter thru the garage, the door will be open and just come inside, we were supposed to surprise the crowd as they had no idea I was going to be entertaining.  

I get into the garage and I had the neatest surprise waiting for me.....a noose!  My host had a great sense of humor and told me he had watched a lot of my videos (http://www.youtube.com/escapeguy), I guess he liked the escape from the hangman's noose I did.  Totally cool host and crowd.  Love my job, love making #magicshows fun  #privateparty in #cbus

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Escape artist doing Marietta show

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Escape artist doing Marietta show

Do you believe in magic? Well you may start after seeing the Fifty Shades of Great Magic Show by award-winning escape artist Michael Griffin.

In one of Marietta’s most supposedly haunted buildings, the Lafayette Hotel, Griffin will be giving his audience an unplugged, intimate show on Friday at 7:30 p.m.

“This is a hands-on intimate show,” said  Griffin. “There’s no smoke, no mirrors. It’s practically in your lap.”

Griffin will be performing original mind experiments, impossible escapes, all driven by comedy and audience interaction.

The Columbus magician has been traveling the world with his mind-blowing public hangings and mystical tricks for 30 years while also making appearances on “America’s Got Talent,”  “Masters of Illusion” and “Ripley’s Believe It or Not!”

Griffin said he has been to Marietta before and is very excited to perform his show in the hotel.

“I have some weird connection with Marietta,” said Griffin. “I love the Lafayette Hotel, it has it’s own vibe and it’s really cool.”

The show will be in the Gun Room with only 110 tickets available.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at the hotel’s front desk, website or by calling 740-373-5522.

The Gun Room will also be serving dinner from their regular restaurant menu from 5 to 7:30 p.m before the show begins.

According to Christina Thrasher, director of sales, the haunted hotel’s spooky ambiance can also be expected to bring a crowd to the mystical show.

“We definitely do have a lot of experience in the haunted aspect,” she said. “Anything that has the spooky aspect seems to have a great draw in the hotel.”

Thrasher said she thought bringing in Griffin’s one-man magic show would be perfect to intertwine with the Halloween season.

“It’s something we don’t see a lot of in our area, so we hope to bring something different than the basic band we see on a Friday night,” said Thrasher. “This is definitely family-oriented and we hope anybody and everybody comes out for a fun evening.”

Griffin said he understands that there may be skeptical minds in the crowd, but he will surely surprise them with his practice of mentalism.

“I had a lady two weeks ago come up to me after show and she told me ‘I don’t understand how you were able to see what I was thinking, it was very unnerving,'”said Griffin.

Griffin said he enjoys being able to connect with people and is truly looking forward to trying new things.

“I’m really embarking on this unplugged one man show,” he said. “I think who ever comes out is going to have a blast and a half.”

If you go

¯What: Fifty Shades of Great Magic.

¯Where: The Lafayette Hotel.

¯When: Friday at 7:30 p.m.

¯Who: Michael Griffin.

¯Cost: $15.

Source: The Lafayette Hotel.

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Escape artist Michael Griffin to perform Friday in Marietta

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Escape artist Michael Griffin to perform Friday in Marietta

Michael Griffin, who performed in Marietta in a feat in the Muskingum River off the Showboat Becky Thatcher, is a two-time World Magic Champion and will perform 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Lafayette Hotel. (Photo Provided)

Michael Griffin, who performed in Marietta in a feat in the Muskingum River off the Showboat Becky Thatcher, is a two-time World Magic Champion and will perform 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Lafayette Hotel. (Photo Provided)

MARIETTA — An escape artist who performed a death-defying feat more than 20 years ago in Marietta will return to the river town for a show at the Lafayette Hotel.

Michael Griffin, a two-time World Magic Champion who has appeared on television, will present “50 Shades of Great Magic” 7:30 p.m. Friday at the hotel restaurant. Tickets are $15.

Griffin said he loves performing in intimate venues such as a restaurant. Unlike television, the Lafayette will be a stripped down performance, he said.

“It will be a very stripped down unplugged show,” Griffin said.

But that won’t mean the show will be any less spectacular, he said. Griffin plans to do several escapes, so fast “that is not uncommon for someone working with me on stage to say something you can’t print,” he said.

Most of the show will involve the audience and reading their minds, Griffin said.

“There’s a lot of mentalism,” he said. “Almost like psychic stuff.”

He has a pair of Harry Houdini’s handcuffs and will try to incorporate the artifact from the most renown escape artist in the last century into the show. October is National Magic Month, Houdini died on Halloween and the Lafayette allegedly is haunted, Griffin said.

Griffin started in the business doing sleight of hand and close-up magic, which is performed in intimate surroundings close to the audience.

“It happens right under your nose,” he said.

About 20 years ago he appeared in Marietta at the old Becky Thatcher Showboat, which has since been removed, for a Houdini-style escape act. Locked in chains, Griffin, now 55, went overboard into the muddy Muskingum River.

But recent flooding caused the river to be high and swift that day and Griffin was pushed underneath the boat by the current and became stuck between it and the muddy bank. He struggled to free himself and finally got from under the boat, only to get tangled in safety equipment emergency personnel insisted be used.

“I got tangled in the safety ladder,” Griffin said.

Griffin also has appeared on America’s Got Talent and the Masters of Illusion on television.

His secret is a strong mind, convictions, heart and beliefs, his promotional materials said.

“I do not use drugs or alcohol. I never have and I never will,” he said. “I simply do not believe in their illusion, nor the illusion of negative thinking which is the toughest strait jacket we will ever face; but, if you put your mind to it, and you believe in yourself, you will always escape.”

Griffin calls himself an escape artist. He does not call himself a magician.

“You can shake a tree and 12 musicians fall out of it,” he said.

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