Magician Yu Ho-jin stars in Broadway magic show ‘The Illusionists’

November 24, 2015
Yu Ho-jin inside Neil Simon Theatre, where "The Illusionists" magic show began last week.

Yu Ho-jin inside Neil Simon Theatre, where “The Illusionists” magic show began last week.

South Korean magician Yu Ho-jin, 24, is one of seven to feature on the first magic show to land in Broadway 20 years following David Copperfield, “The Illusionists.”

Yu appears as The Manipulator, with an emphasis on the use of his hands.

The show opened last week and will continue for seven weeks in New York City’s Neil Simon Theatre.

He was the first Asian ever to win the grand prize at the World Champisonship of Magic, known as FISM, in 2012.

Last year, Yu was crowned Magician of the Year by the world magic community inside Hollywood Magic Castle as the first Korean to win the honor.

“I decided to become a magician after watching a card appear in the hand of a neighborhood friend when I was younger,” he said. “Afterward, I got myself into trouble with my parents after buying magic-related books and objects. Eventually, they gave in and enrolled me in a magic school. I officially entered the world of magic when I was 15 years old.”

Although he continued to face failure at more than 10 magic contests until he was 19 years old, Yu finally saw victory as the second-place winner of the Busan International Magic Festival in 2010. FISM came two years later.

“Even though I kept losing, I was just happy to be on stage. Somehow, I ended up on stage with some of the world’s best magicians, receiving their applause,” he said. “That was a dream come true.”

“The biggest thing I’ve gained from doing magic is that I can create happy memories for people,” Yu said. “The remnants of happy memories are what gives us the strength to keep going.”