New York Magazine – Best of New York – Best Magician
Think of Arnie Kolodner as a magician and actor rolled into one. Kolodner and his (lovely) assistant stage fully costumed magic shows that take classic children’s stories, – Cinderella, Snow White, Peter Pan, The Wizard of Oz – and add interactive tricks (including the crowd-pleasing floating-table and disappearing-lady routines). New to the lineup is a wizard-school adaptation, à la Harry Potter. Donald Trump, Katie Couric, Kevin Kline, and Harvey Weinstein have all hired Kolodner to perform at their children’s birthdays. Check on availability well in advance!
New York Magazine – Cinderella
Cinderalla and the Magic Prince
In this version of the classic, the prince is the star and he also plays a new character, Lord Boxington, a royal magician, as well as the evil stepmother. Real-life magician Arnie Kolodner is a dazzler. This is one performance of Cinderella that even boys will love. Arnie Kolodner is arguably the most sought after birthday party magician in New York.
New York Magazine – Family Guide
By Susan Avery
Broadway-caliber magician Arnie Kolodner brings revamped fairy-tale shows to the party, complete with scenery, costumes, and very cool prestidigitation. Kids go home with a magic trick they can do themselves.
New York Times Theatre Review – Snow White
By Laurel Graeber
Don’t Bite That Apple!
You can see the Seven Dwarves onstage for the next few weekends, but you won’t recognize them as Sleepy, Grumpy, Dopey et al. They’re Tom, Dick, and Harry or more likely these days, Andrew, Christopher, Alexander etc.
Inviting six characters from the audience to play dwarves is just one of the charming conceits in “Snow White and The Magic Prince,” from Arnie Kolodner Magic and the Melting Pot Theatre Company. Mr. Kolodner himself plays the seventh dwarf (on his knees), along with everyone else except Snow White.
Like Mr. Kolodner’s recent “Cinderella,” “Snow White” combines traditional theatre with magic.
A variety of objects, from a broom to a dish of apples seem to appear almost from thin air. And if your child finds mistakes like calling Snow White “Snow Shovel” just hilarious then this is the show for you. (You may even chuckle yourself. Mr. Kolodner’s Evil Queen persuades Snow White to let her/him in with the line, “Strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet.”)
My own son, Matthew, was thrilled to play a dwarf, following every stage direction perfectly except one: to give Snow White a big kiss and a hug before heading off to the mines.
New York Times Theatre Review – Peter Pan
By Laurel Graeber
A New Neverland
If Peter Pan had been a magician, he might not have needed all that swordplay to get rid of Captain Hook. In the Melting Pot Theatre Company production “The Magic Land of Peter Pan,” there really is a wizard at work, and he has much more than Tinker Bell’s pixie dust up his sleeve.
He is Arnie Kolodner, the affable magician, who here plays Peter and Hook. He uses scenes from J.M. Barrie’s tale to show off his feats.
When, for instance, Wendy sews Peter’s shadow, Mr. Kolodner makes a thimble disappear and then reappear in various places, including Wendy’s hair and behind the ears of several audience members. He shreds Mr. Darling’s newspaper and then restores it. As Captain Hook, he doesn’t make Wendy walk the plank; he saws her into three pieces instead.
Mr. Kolodner’s fans — children 3 to 8 — are encouraged to answer his questions, shout directions and heckle Captain Hook. Before the show three lucky ones are selected for onstage parts: John, Michael and Tinker Bell, who is levitated at the end. Mr. Kolodner is a winning performer!
New York Times Theatre Review – Cinderella
By Laurel Graeber
The Spell of Cinderella
Every child knows that “Cinderella” has magic. How else would the heroine get a coach and footmen, not to mention a ball dress? In “Cinderella and the Magic Prince” though, that wizardry is just small potatoes (or small pumpkins). Here, Cinderella levitates, drinks from a floating glass and even turns her stepmother’s umbrella into a wire scarf rack.
Such sleight of hand comes courtesy of Arnie Kolodner, a k a Lord Boxington (the royal magician), a k a The Magic Prince. Mr. Kolodner, a magician, has brought his own bag of tricks to the story, and although he has included a fairy godmother – a little girl from the audience – he is the wizard in charge.
In this 50 minute version from the Melting Pot Theatre Company, Mr. Kolodner and Crystal Scott (Cinderella) ask the children to shout out responses and to play everything from Cinderella’s mice to hopeful ladies trying on the glass slipper.