Magician changes his act so a visually impaired man can experience it for the first time
“I really want you to experience the magic right now. So let’s try something.”
Pro magician Kevin Li has dazzled audiences, celebrities and even heavy hitters in the industry like Penn and Teller with his impressive sleight of hand displays.
However, Li would tell you that one of his “most memorable” performances wasn’t for a sold out crowd, but for a single person who might normally miss out on his gifts.
A video posted to Li's TikTok shows Li offering up a magic trick to a man who is vision impaired. At first, the man politely declined, saying, “I’m blind, so the magic won’t work for me."
Without missing a beat, Li replied, “I really want you to experience the magic right now. So let’s try something.”
Placing a quarter in the man’s hand, Li performed a trick that relied on touch and imagination, rather than eyesight.
“Imagine this coin is made out of rubber, and it’s getting warmer,” Li instructed. From the man’s clasped hands smoke suddenly appeared, followed by gasps from onlookers.
“Do you feel it warming up?”
“It’s warming up!” the man replied.
The man was then encouraged to feel the quarter get “softer and softer.” Grinning ear to ear, the man opened his hands to reveal that, indeed, the quarter has magically transformed into bendy rubber.
“That’s yours to keep forever,” Li told the man.
@magickevinli One of my most memorable performances. There’s always a way to experience magic ❤️ Thanks for having me @Google #magician#kevinlimagic#google♬ original sound - Kevin Li
“There’s always a way to experience magic,” Li wrote in the video's caption.
The heartwarming exchange quickly went viral as people applauded how Li effortlessly made a traditionally visual medium more inclusive.
“This real magic is how quickly you pivoted and figured out how to do this for him. Amazing,” one person wrote.
A fellow magician added, “I’ve been doing magic for a long time, this is hands down my favorite thing I’ve ever seen in the magic community. Beautiful.”
“I’ve never considered that the blind are missing out on magic. Are there blind magicians?” asked one commenter. Li was quick to mention the legendary Richard Turner, one of the world’s most highly regarded card mechanics, who had also been legally blind since he was 9 years old. Yes, there are blind magicians. And in Turner’s case, there are extraordinary ones. No missing out necessary.
Being swept away by feelings of true wonder is arguably one of the biggest highlights of the human experience. It’s lovely that artists like Li work to provide that joy to everyone—because everyone needs it once in a while. Seeing quarters turn to rubber is undoubtedly cool, but sometimes kindness is the best kind of magic there is.