It might seem like a path towards magic was always in the cards for Kyle Key.
Granted, there are 52 cards in a deck, but Central Alberta-based magician Key always seems to find the wild card.
For the past two decades, Key has been practicing magic, the art of performing tricks or illusions for entertainment. His career has taken him all throughout Central Alberta and beyond, amazing audiences of all ages with tricks and a high-energy show that is built upon a single factor — making the audience smile.
“It’s always been something I wanted to do,” he said of pursuing magic. “When you are performing for kids, to see the looks on their faces when they see the tricks and then have the kids up on stage, it’s just a lot of fun and to see them having fun. That’s always been really rewarding so it’s always something that I never wanted to quit.”
Key began doing magic at the young age of five.
“My grandpa actually got me a magic kit for Christmas and that’s how it started, and now with me being 25, I’ve been doing magic for 20 years,” he said.
Key performed publically for the first time when he was a Grade 7 student at Lacombe Junior High School in the school talent show.
“That was my debut,” he said. “That’s when everyone found out that I was a magician.”
Key became enraptured with magic and began attending conventions, competitions and eventually taking lessons.
“That brought me into performing and I guess shortly after that, I started performing birthday party shows and a couple of smaller corporate shows,” he said. “It’s just kind of grown from there.”
Now, Key travels all across the province, with the core of his shows being in Central Alberta. Most recently he was roaming the streets of Lacombe entertaining attendees of Lacombe Days. He also performed during Bentley’s Centennial celebration, which was a special show for him.
“In Bentley, an eight-year-old girl approached me after the show,” explained Key. “She said before she was born, I performed at her brother’s birthday party and he still talks about it. She said she was glad she finally got to see my show.
“That was the first moment, where now I feel old, but you can see that impact.”
Key also taught magic lessons and instructed a magic class for nine years at Ecole Lacombe Upper Elementary School, which he began doing at age 12.
“I can perform in a living room,” said Key of his one-man show. “Or I can perform in someone’s yard or on a big stage with a full sound system. It’s very versatile.”
Every show is a unique experience, depending on the audience’s reaction and participation.
“That’s probably one of my favourite parts of the show,” said Key. “Every show is different because every person I ever have on stage is a completely different person. It’s always fun to interact with them on stage and interact with the audience at the same time, and kind of play off them.”
What’s next in the cards for Key is anyone’s guess. For now, he’s comfortable with his frequent performance schedule and pursuing what is easily seen as his passion.
While most magicians hope to perform at bigger and bigger shows and eventually see their names in lights in Las Vegas, for example, Key has a different focus for this stage of his career.
“I don’t know if that’s in the cards for me,” he said of eventually heading to Vegas. “I like what I’m doing at the range that I’m doing it and I’ve very busy with it. It’s been rewarding. It’s always something new. It’s always a new client, a new audience and I’m kind of as busy with it as I want to be.
“Performing shows for me is just a good way of getting in front of an audience and seeing those reactions,” he said. “That’s what I’m in it for. I just enjoy doing it.”
For more information about Key, visit www.kktm.ca or find him on Facebook.