Magician performs Impossible Science show at OMSI in February

INCLUDES EXCLUSIVE VIDEO PERFORMANCE | Discover why magician – and physicist – Jason Latimer returned to the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and why lots of outer East Portland folks are going to see it …

For his Impossible Science LIVE show at OMSI, magician and physicist Jason Latimer sets up an illusion he calls “Laser Fiction” which gives the appearance that he can manipulate a beam of light like a solid object.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Although it’s likely the best live magic show you’ve seen, to be presented at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), you’ll likely guess that the magician, Jason Latimer, is more than a “World Champion of Magic” – he’s also a science educator.

Latimer, a Roseburg, Oregon native, has brought his show called Impossible Science LIVE for the month of February. Actually, it’s a return booking; read on to learn why.

Magician and scientist Jason Latimer makes no effort to hide the threads that makes his Tensegrity Table float.

“I am a scientist who happens to love magic,” Latimer told East Portland News as he was unpacking his show outside OMSI’s Empirical Theater.

“It’s a combination of magic and science to inspire kids to ask questions,” explained Latimer. I stopped performing in Las Vegas and decided to apply my background in science with my love magic; and, that’s how I created Impossible Science,” he continued.

Finds flaw in internet research
In 2013, Latimer was a speaker of the TEDxWallStreet conference where he presented his talk entitled, “Seeing Beyond the Illusion of Knowledge” about the necessity of questioning answers to queries researched on the internet.

“The talk was based on the realization that really struck me,” Latimer said. “The problem with internet research is that the ‘most popular answer’ is moved to the top of search results by its controlling algorithms. Thus, true-but-revolutionary ideas fall to the bottom of the search result.

“But, the person searching the question does not know that a ‘new’ and perhaps ‘better’ answer exists, so they grab onto the ‘already popular’ idea,” continued Latimer. “And, clicking on that top link makes it even more popular to the next person searching.”

Watch Jason Latimer perform a segment of his award-winning magic, just for you, backstage at OMSI:

Turns ‘TED’ talk into show
He presented his first version of the show in the Fleet Science Center in San Diego, CA where it ran every weekend for two years. Then, Latimer created what he called the Impossible Science Festival. “This created experiences with invisibility, levitation mind control, and levitation that looked like magic illusions, but was all accomplished with no magic tricks,” he recalled.

Illusionist and physicist Jason Latimer starts setting up his “Invisibility” screen.

Although OMSI contacted the science center in San Diego to bring it to Portland, Latimer said he delayed the decision  to do so, because the show had run on weekends, and he needed a way to occupy his time during the week.

“So, we applied the Impossible Science stage show and all the experiments of the Festival, into creating ‘Next Generation Science Centers’ for schools for students in public schools nationwide. Now, our show runs concurrently with the school-based programs, so kids could come here during school, and satisfy a science education requirement,” explained Latimer.

There’s physics, magician Jason Latimer insists, behind his “Cups and Balls” trick – done with clear glass cups!

OMSI shows cancelled by COVID in 2020, returns in 2023
He came to Portland in February 2020 and sold out 50 shows – the month that COVID regulations started locking things down – and the show closed, and Latimer went back to Los Angeles.

“This is my first stop with a tour of live shows, here at OMSI, since the COVID pandemic started,” Latimer said enthusiastically.

“If you want your kid to be more curious, this is the show to see because it takes magic in a totally direction than what people are expecting,” Latimer persuaded. Which you are going to see are 21st century things – illusions that did not exist a handful of years ago – and each illusion is a demonstration from different fields of science.

“I’m thrilled to be teaching young people to have questions about applied science,” Latimer concluded.

Impossible Science LIVE runs Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday through February 26. For more information, show times, and to purchase tickets, see the official OMSI webpage: CLICK HERE.

© 2023 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™



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