Meeting at a prearranged location in Gluttony to await being led to a secret spot, the small audience for this intimate performance – including myself – are intrigued. Harrison Milas appears and immediately puts us at ease. He quickly learns our names and invites us to grab a drink from the nearby bar before we follow him to a hidden performance space secreted away between the big tops and bar backs.
I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to shake him by the hand or burn him at the stake
Now I have to qualify this before I go on; this is a five-star show and when one gives a show five stars, it’s important to be very clear why the show deserves such praise. However, to reveal too much about the experience would be to do you, the reader, a disservice – but I’m going to do the best I can.
After making us sign confidentiality agreements (a perplexing experience when you have to review a show), Milas launches into what can only be described as part lecture, part performance and part confessional of an inveterate card cheat. Milas may be an unreliable narrator though as he regularly reminds us of the power of being a good liar when working the card table. However, he’s charming and open about what he’s doing and invites questions throughout the performance.
The actual card manipulation on display is spectacular and effortless and draws regular gasps of astonishment from the audience. Often, we are invited to lean in and closely observe the sleight of hand and Milas occasionally invites only some of us around the table to see what’s happening thus adding to the delight when the trick is revealed to all.
With such a limited number of tickets available for each show and the certainty that this is one of the unmissable shows in Adelaide this year, move fast to make sure you get the chance to spend an hour with this excellent showman. I have to admit that I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to shake him by the hand or burn him at the stake.