Comedian Justin Willman gives students a night of magic

Justin Willman at MTSU's Student Union Ballroom, August 27, 2014. Photo by John Connor Coulston. MTSU Sidelines Lifestyles Editor

By Sarah Taylor, Staff Writer


On Wednesday evening, magician, comedian and television host Justin Willman performed twice for MTSU students as a part of the university’s Week of Welcome.

The evening began with opening act Lindsay Benner, who brought an interesting flair to the stage. In an unusual but captivating performance, Benner brought her story “The Book of Love” to life through the use of pantomime, juggling, various parlor tricks and one very cooperative audience member, warming up the stage for the evening’s headliner.

Justin Willman’s act brought a veritable line-up of illusions and jokes that kept the crowd engaged. Through the use of cleverly executed tricks, illusions, jokes, props and audience volunteers, the Cupcake Wars host displayed his years of mixed entertainment skills by using humor to bring the audience into a state of disbelief. His charming and multi-facetted show stemmed from Willman’s early dream of a career in magic.

“I always knew in the back of my mind that you could be versatile [in entertainment],” Willman told Sidelines. “But, magic was always my favorite.”

When asked about his wide-range of talents, he explained that magic shows require a certain level of hosting skills, and that comedy was used to relieve the audience of having to pretend that the illusions were actual magic.

While his intricate and tantalizing antics kept attendees guessing, Willman gave the show one clear and constant factor. Throughout his show, he would take every opportunity to insert the message, “Live in the moment.”

Willman later elaborates on his message, ” In college, I think the idea of ‘living in the moment’ is important,” he said. “You really do want to live in to the moment before shit gets real.”

After looking at the clean comedians history, it’s clear this type of entertainment is what people really want. An act that’s funny yet intriguing, creating a night of mystery for any guest.

To contact Lifestyles editor John Connor Coulston, email

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