Piff will bring some magic to Park City Institute’s Main Stage season
Park City Institute’s first announcement of its 2019-20 Main Stage season is Piff The Magic Dragon, who will perform a family-friendly show at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 22, at the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Center for the Performing Arts, 1750 Kearns Blvd.
The performance will be presented by St. Regis Deer Valley.
Tickets for Piff The Magic Dragon will go on sale to members of the Park City Institute on Monday, Oct. 14. Tickets can be purchased in person at the box office, or by calling 435-655-3114.
Public ticket sales will begin on Wednesday, Oct. 16, online at parkcityinstitute.org, as well as by phone or in person.
VIP Tickets are $70 for adults and $40 for children. Tier 1 Tickets are $50 for adults and $25 for children. Tier 2 tickets are $40 for adults and $20 for children. As with all PCI regular season performances, tickets for students in Summit County schools in grades K-12 are $5.00.
“We are happy to share the first show announcement of our Main Stage Season, is Piff The Magic Dragon,” said Teri Orr, Park City Institute executive director. “His brand of magic has wowed everyone from the judges on ‘America’s Got Talent’ to sold-out audiences in Las Vegas, (and) from Radio City Music Hall and Shakespeare’s Globe to the Sydney Opera House. We are excited to present this evening of entertainment for all ages.”
Piff the Magic Dragon first appeared on Season 10 of “America’s Got Talent” — joined by Mr. Piffles, The World’s Only Magic Performing Chihuahua. His performances include an infectious mix of wit and sarcasm that ignites a one-of-a-kind comedy magic show, for all ages.
Piff has performed for audiences all over the world at venues including the Edinburgh Fringe. He was the opening act for Mumford & Sons on their UK tour and graces the cover of their Grammy award winning album “Babel.”
Piff performs nightly to sold out crowds at his residency at the world-famous Flamingo Casino in Las Vegas — in the newly renamed Piff the Magic Dragon Theatre.
Born James van der Put, Piff grew up in South East London.
He was inspired to pursue a career in magic by magician Jerry Sadowitz, whom he watched on the popular BBC2 show, “Stuff the White Rabbit.”
At 18, van der Put became a member of Britain’s premier magician’s society, known as The Magic Circle.
His parents, however, urged him to line up a back-up career. So he completed a computer science degree, and worked in IT for two years.
A serious illness spurred him to rethink his life goals, and van der Put quit IT to study performance as a drama student at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama, and he eventually formed a theatrical cabaret company with fellow alumni of the CSSD.
In 2008, van der Put created his stage persona of Piff the Magic Dragon by accident when he went to a costume party in a dragon outfit. It so happened that no one else turned up in costume.
“It was just me,” van der Put said. “And one of my friends who knew that I was a magician said to me, ‘You should do this in your act. You could be Puff the Magic Dragon.’ And I said, ‘Wait, I could be Piff the Magic Dragon. You might have heard of my older brother, Steve.’ And that’s where that came from.”
Van der Put notes the costume was his sister’s idea, and says to to this day, even though she and he are unclear if it’s even a dragon costume.
“So, it was definitely some sort of lizardy, reptile-ish creature that I prefer to look at as a dragon,” he said.
Van der Put as Piff won the Time Out Critic’s Choice award as well as the 2009 Buxton Festival Fringe’s award for Best Production, and he was nominated for the Festival’s Best New Writing award.
For information, visit parkcityinstitute.org.
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