Most of the time, magic is something you see performed on TV or on stage. Not on October 27: During NiteTables's Night of the Living Sexy bash at Hudson Terrace, partygoers will experience the wonder of illusions up close and performed just for them by Discovery Channel "Supernaturalist" star Dan White.
Those in attendance can "expect to see magic that is special and unique and very personal," says Philadelphia native White, 30, who came to New York in 2002 and spent much of the last decade working alongside famed illusionist and endurance artist David Blaine, first as the latter's apprentice, then as head magic consultant for two of his ABC specials. "I'll use whatever [you] have, like a cell phone or money, whatever's in your pockets. The only object I carry is a deck of cards."
White first became interested in magic at the age of 10, when his dad showed him a poster featuring Harry Houdini predecessor and late-19th Century illusionist Harry Kellar. Then he saw David Copperfield on television, "and I wanted to be a magician for the rest of my life," says White. "He was so cool, especially through the eyes of a 12-year-old boy."
As a teen, White worked in a local magic shop. "I learned a lot from the guys who walked in." But he was particularly intrigued by Blaine. "He started 'street magic', which is done close up in the streets with any objects people have," White explains. "He took away the glitter by doing that. He brought it real to people." On the other end of the spectrum is Copperfield, who's known for lavish stage spectacles like his current Vegas residency at the MGM Grand, for which White is currently a consultant.
A favorite on the celebrity party circuit, White says among his most memorable moments were enchanting Lil Kim at P. Diddy's 2007 White Party and an appearance at the 2008 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show: "It was fantastic, just being around the most beautiful women in the world and watching them freak out." He's also performed for Kim Kardashian and Reggie Bush, as well as Miley Cyrus.
White is looking forward to freaking people out at the NiteTables bash, which will kick off the Halloween weekend with a $1000 cash prize for Sexiest Costume. "Magic is sexy," White says. "That's because of mystery, and there's something very alluring about mystery, something you can't figure out. Astonishing someone, giving them a sense of wonder, that is the goal of the magician."