02.26.2019

Piff The Magic Dragon in Modesto: A Review

Piff The Magic Dragon in Modesto: A Review

By Michael P Coleman

You can enjoy a live show by the loser of America’s Got Talent, Piff The Magic Dragon, in one of three ways:

You can look at it as a stand-up comedy routine that brilliantly engages with audience members and delivers biting, sarcastic, sometimes self-deprecating humor. 

You can sit back and marvel at an utterly mesmerizing, David Copperfield-esque magic show. 

Or, ironically, you can observe the embodiment of the American dream.

I did all three, but either way you go, you’ll be watching a scraggly, salty, unshaven British guy in a rumpled dragon onesie with his faithful, ancient pooch, Mr. Piffles…and you’ll be laughing your ass off

And by the way, I wasn’t being mean by calling Piff a “loser.”  If you doubt my sincerity there, check out his website

I attended the second of two near-capacity Piff shows at the Gallo Center for the Arts in Modesto, stops during the reptile’s Lucky Dragon national tour.  The performance was simultaneously confounding, mesmerizing, and hysterical. 

Piff pulled off tricks I couldn’t figure out.  How’d he get the receipt into a banana that hadn’t yet been peeled?  How’d he get the watch that belonged to a guy he’d just plucked from the audience into a box of take-out food that was delivered to the stage from the back of the theatre — after that watch had been placed into a small sack right in front of our eyes? 

Piff is a magic dragon, indeed!  I loved it. 

And I wasn’t alone.  During the show’s finale, Piff said he’d be in the lobby taking selfies and greeting fans.  Minutes later, the line to meet him wrapped around the lobby and out of the venue’s front door.  I had never seen such a long line at the Gallo Center to meet a performer.  Nor had I seen an artist so willing to meet every fan, hear every story, and take every picture. 

Piff seemed genuinely moved by the love — which makes sense.  Only on this side of the pond could a bedazzled dragon become an absolute sensation. 

I was still smiling the morning after the show, which mirrored my response whenever I caught him on America’s Got Talent.  In fact, I was still so enthralled that I almost wore a onesie to work the next morning.

Almost.

Click here to connect with Piff The Magic Dragon. 

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Connect with freelance writer Michael P Coleman at michaelpcoleman.com or follow him on Twitter:  @ColemanMichaelP.