Biography of David Copperfield, the Famous Las Vegas Magician
David Copperfield is one of the most iconic magicians of our era. He has been performing in Las Vegas since the mid-1980s, captivating audiences with his amazing illusions, sleight of hand, and signature style.
Born David Seth Kotkin on September 16, 1956, in Metuchen, New Jersey, he got his start as a teenage magician, performing at local venues around the area. His career took off quickly, and soon he was appearing on TV shows like The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and The Merv Griffin Show. Copperfield's talent and charisma made him an instant hit with audiences around the world.
Early Life & Education
Kotkin was born to a Jewish family and enjoyed putting on shows for family members from an early age. At 12, he changed his name legally to David Copperfield which was taken from Charles Dickens’s novel “David Copperfield” because he wanted something more magical than his real name sounded.
His parents supported him by allowing him to perform regularly at local community theaters and civic events. He studied theatre at Fordham University where he earned a degree in television production.
Rise to Stardom
At 18 years old, Copperfield moved to Los Angeles to pursue his career as a professional magician. With his charismatic style and larger-than-life illusions, David Copperfield quickly became a household name in the late 1970s and 1980s.
He gained recognition quickly when he was featured on multiple TV shows, including The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson multiple times between 1977 and 1981.
By 1979, Copperfield had already been featured in Time magazine as one of America’s most promising entertainers under 30. In 1983 Copperfield set two Guinness World Records for the largest audience ever entertained with an audience of over 13000 people in Houston, Texas, and then again 3 years later with an audience of over 15000 people in Detroit, Michigan.
Las Vegas Residency & Signature Illusions
In 1986, Copperfield had already become a household name throughout the United States, so much so that MGM Grand signed him up for a four-year residency at their hotel/casino. This made him the highest-paid performer at that time, earning over $50 million during its run from 1986-1990.
As part of his show, Copperfield performed many of his signature illusions, such as levitating across the stage, walking through the Great Wall of China, making the Statue of Liberty disappear, and appearing inside locked boxes placed around the theater floor, among others. This all was performed live without camera tricks or editing!
Present Work & Legacy
Copperfield continues to tour extensively throughout North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia, performing live shows that often sell out arenas across each continent. More than 30 years later, Copperfield is still regarded as one of the greatest magicians of all time. He has won 21 Emmy Awards, more than any other magician in history, and has received numerous other accolades. In 2019, he was awarded the Living Legend Award by the Library of Congress, adding to his already impressive legacy.
Copperfield has also made a significant impact on the world of magic through his work with Project Magic, an organization he founded that helps people with disabilities learn sleight of hand as a form of therapy. Additionally, he has used his platform to support charitable causes, including Children International and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
With over 40 years of experience, Copperfield continues to inspire young generations around the world who dream of becoming masterful magicians like him someday. His impact on the world of magic is undeniable, and his legacy as one of the most innovative and successful magicians of all time is secure.
David Copperfield is one of the most successful and influential magicians in history, and his impact on the world of magic cannot be overstated. He has captivated audiences worldwide with his incredible illusions, including walking through the Great Wall Of China and vanishing an audience member into thin air right before their eyes. Moreover, Copperfield's Las Vegas shows have become an iconic part of the city's entertainment scene.
Visitors to Las Vegas can enjoy a wide range of entertainment options, including games like first person blackjack, but few experiences are as unforgettable as a David Copperfield performance. With his unique blend of creativity, showmanship, and technical skill, Copperfield is sure to continue wowing audiences for years to come.