Magic, mys­tery and new moves

Il­lu­sion­ist is hop­ing to trick the dance judges, writes

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - FRONT PAGE -

OSENTINO may be a mas­ter of sleight of hand magic, but he doubts it’s go­ing to help him as a con­tes­tant on the Chan­nel 7 hit Danc­ing with the Stars. ‘‘Per­haps I can hyp­no­tise the judges and make them say good things,’’ he laughs. Joke.

The truth is the ma­gi­cian and il­lu­sion­ist, who dons danc­ing shoes to raise funds for the Aus­tralian Lit­er­acy and Nu­mer­acy Foun­da­tion, may not have to. Af­ter this week’s de­but, Cosentino sits at the top of the DWTS score board. Judge He­len Richey awarded him the show’s first per­fect 10 and the au­di­ence gave him a stand­ing ova­tion.

Cosentino didn’t sound so con­fi­dent when he phoned in early this week.

‘‘Peo­ple say you’re good at per­form­ing you’ll be re­ally good,’’ he says.

‘‘I do per­form a lot on stage, but the au­di­ence is sit­ting down and I can’t see them – I’m up on the stage un­der the lights and when I look out ev­ery­thing just looks black.

‘‘This though, is a re­al­ity check. You’re out on a dance­floor, the au­di­ence is all around you; you per­form on pol­ished floor­boards.

‘‘I re­ally do feel like a fish out of wa­ter. This is dif­fer­ent to any­thing I’ve done be­fore.’’

His dance part­ner Jes­sica Raffa men­tored show favourites Ger­ard Gossens, Blair McDonough and Bren­dan Fevola.

‘‘She’s lovely, Jess; nice and pa­tient. She learns how you work and then finds a way to bring out the best in you,’’ he says.

Cosentino con­cedes his stage shows re­quire an un­der­stand­ing of tim­ing to get things right. But the moves and flour­ishes he chore­ographs for live shows are more hin­der­ance than help when it comes to ball­room danc­ing.

‘‘I do a few moves in­spired by Michael Jack­son, Usher, Justin Timberlake, all self-taught,’’ he laughs. ‘‘Jess says my weight’s all wrong. I lean into my right hip and Jess says no, I can’t do that. She try­ing to break bad habits.’’

Cer­tainly, Cosentino wants to do well. He and Raffa have been prac­tis­ing for six hours a day.

The per­former then drives an hour in traf­fic to re­hearse for a new na­tional tour which opens this weekend in Mel­bourne be­fore it hits the road for stops in big cities in­clud­ing the Gold Coast on Novem­ber 1 and 2.

‘‘I’m so pumped,’’ says Cosentino of his The Magic, The Mys­tery and The Mad­ness tour which gives fans the chance to see the death de­fy­ing tricks, grand il­lu­sions and sleight-of­hand magic which fea­ture on his TV show.

‘‘I’ve dreamed of hav­ing my own tour­ing magic show since I Danc­ing with the Stars was lit­tle boy. ‘‘ The Magic, The Mys­tery and The Mad­ness is big­ger and bet­ter than any­thing I’ve done be­fore. I’m trav­el­ling with two semi-trail­ers of equip­ment. It’s mas­sive.’’

Danc­ing with the Stars: Tues­days, 7.30pm, Seven, Prime7.

Cosentino: The Magic, The Mys­tery, The Mad­ness: Wed­nes­day, 7.30pm, Seven, Prime7; live show at Jupiters The­atre on Novem­ber 1 and 2. New con­tes­tants take to the dance­floor ahead of the first round of judg­ing. Ju­lia Zemiro’s Home De­liv­ery Wed­nes­day, 9.05pm, ABC1 Ju­lia Zemiro vis­its the childhood home of Aus­tralian ac­tor and comic Noe­line Brown.

Cosentino snapped for

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