Welcome to the High Sierra, where a rare opportunity awaits a few aficionados of the art of magic.

The Thin Air Summit, the Ultimate VIP way to experience Spellbinders, the International Festival of Magic, returns to Reno, Nevada, November 14 - 17, 2019.

Tucked away inside the luxurious Renaissance Reno Downtown Hotel, far from the hubbub of the public shows, a select group of true believers will revel in the opportunity to witness private performances, under optimum viewing conditions, of some of the greatest Masters of Close-Up, Stage and Platform magic in the world. These few, these happy few, will enjoy a sumptuous buffet when they arrive Nov. 14th and then immerse themselves in special shows, lectures, Master Classes, preferential seating at the Gala Show in the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts, and perhaps most importantly, the chance to hang out with real icons of magic in a relaxed, no pressure, club-like environment. How could such a fantasy be possible? Simple. Attendance is limited to 40. First come, first served.

See the Masters perform under optimum viewing circumstances!

By limiting the Thin Air Summit to only 40 attendees (and then breaking that group down into even smaller groups) you are guaranteed to see Close-Up the way it’s supposed to be seen-- close up.

Hear the Masters dissect their practice in their own lectures!

You should pay attention when World Champions deconstruct their most famous routines into the most minute detail because an opportunity like this doesn’t come along every day.

Hang with the Masters, enjoy libations and hobnob with your brother wizards in the Sanctum Sanctorum!

Perhaps you relish the idea of sharing a glass with someone who inspired you and gleaning the process behind their signature routine. This would be impossible in a packed convention room, amidst the crush of a thousand dilettantes, hangers-on, and dealers hawking their wares. At the Thin Air Summit, among a select group of like-minded practitioners, you’ll find countless opportunities to sit and chat, or watch and learn, or share a meal with someone who has played a pivotal role in your development.

The Line-Up

Not just the usual suspects.

All acts may be subject to change without notice.

Stuart MacDonald Wizard of Theatrical Phantasmagoria
Anna DeGuzman Queen of Cardistry
Karl Koppertop Never Ending Magic

Stuart MacDonald

Like so many of the Gold Medal winners who appear at SPELLBINDERS, Stuart has won a lot of awards. He has won multiple Gold Medals from the International Brotherhood of Magicians as well as the Society of American Magicians. In fact, he holds the distinction of winning more awards in one international contest than any magician in history. The reason, no doubt, can be found in the foundation of his magic which is unabashedly hyper-theatrical. He weaves a story that is so compelling (and inexplicable) that the audience is sucked into his crazy, impossible, nonsensical, mysterious world before they know what’s happened to them. That’s what Penn & Teller said when Stuart appeared on the 4th Season of their hit show, “Penn & Teller: Fool Us,” and Stuart took the title of the show as a direct invitation. Penn & Teller both freely admitted they could not imagine how he accomplished the extraordinary feats he presented and they had to confess-- he fooled them! It is no surprise that Stuart MacDonald wins People’s Choice Awards wherever he appears because, above all else, he is determined to entertain the audience with things they’ve never seen before.

Anna DeGuzman

What Anna DeGuzman can do with a deck of fifty-two cards will make your head spin! Manipulating cards into impossible 3-D configurations, she cuts, flings, flips, rotates, juggles, and shuffles playing cards in the middle of the street, elite invitation-only cocktail parties, high-profile private events, and at the most prestigious venues in the world including the exclusive members-only club in Hollywood, the Magic Castle. There’s a name for her art: “cardistry” (card artistry), and Anna DeGuzman is not only one of the only female practitioners, she’s also one of the world’s best. Her hands are a blur! A YouTube and Instagram star, Anna is considered one of the most influential social media magicians in the country. Her hands have been seen showcasing incredible dexterity on Disney, ESPN, Buzzfeed, and a multitude of viral content produced for her social media. She has performed on the Steve Harvey Show, MTV’s Amazingness, and this past summer she was featured on CW’s Masters of Illusion, and Penn & Teller: Fool Us. Anna loves enchanting everyone with her magical charm and being able to pursue her passion as a career.

Karl Koppertop

Is he known as Koppertop because of his inexhaustible energy or his trademark hair? You be the judge. Karl Koppertop has logged thousands of performance hours on national television and traveling around the globe to over 20 countries. As a creator, performer and teacher, he has baffled, entertained and impressed first class magicians from all over the world who have honored him with multiple performance awards. Karl Koppertop is one of the emerging new young stars of magic who performs internationally and then lectures to magicians about the illusions he has created for himself and others. He has appeared on The Pete Holmes Show, and his ideas have been featured on America's Got Talent and Penn & Teller's "Fool Us." He has authored numerous instructional DVDs and done seminars for elite magic organizations including the world famous Magic Castle.

Rocco Two Time FISM Award Winner
Dan Birch The Lord of Illusion
Gregory Wilson An Honest Con Man


This Jersey Boy has done pretty good for the son of Italian immigrants who came to Paterson, New Jersey, in search of the American Dream. The legendary master magician, Slydini, took Rocco under his wing and tutored the young novice, and it definitely shows in the precision and deliberate pace Rocco establishes in every performance. The defining moment in his career came when he picked up a copy of Bobo’s Modern Coin Magic and discovered some of the lost arts of pure manipulation. Rocco developed this mastery into a style that has become his signature throughout the world. In 1986 Rocco won the coveted Golden Lion’s Award at the Las Vegas Desert Seminar, but that was just the beginning. Rocco became the first American to ever win gold medals twice at the prestigious Federation Internationale des Societes Magiques, competing in 1994 and then again in 2006. That launched the never-ending tour that has become Rocco’s life, taking him to every corner of the world, most recently to China where he captured the hearts of audiences in Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong. Once you’ve seen him you’ll understand why.

Dan Birch

This talented dove worker is known for his powerful live act, but, more than a few magicians know him as a creator of powerful effects intended for television. Good Day L.A. chose Dan out of all the Magic Castle magicians to feature on their show because they love what he does (and because nobody looks the part like Dan Birch looks the part.) Dan has worked behind the scenes for years on shows like Columbo and Quantum Leap, but, his biggest client of late is David Copperfield who went crazy for an original invention of Dan’s and hired Dan to personally train him to perform the effect on an upcoming television special. (You’ll see him performing it at the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts.) The mutual admiration society that emerged from their working relationship is a testament to two pros who share the same work ethic. Dan Birch epitomizes what we think of when we think “magician” and he sets the benchmark for other magicians in Classic Manipulation.

Gregory Wilson

This prolific creator of new and original magic will be touring all over Reno visiting local java joints with his Coffee House Conjuring, a unique kind of close-up magic for the caffeine lover in you. His attention to detail and insistence that routines develop organically from the props and surroundings are the hallmarks that won him a spot on SyFy Channel’s new hit show, Wizard Wars. His easy-going charm is actually one of the weapons he wields in his arsenal of misdirection. The miracles he creates seem all the more astounding because they originate from ordinary objects found in familiar surroundings. The caffeine just amps up the intensity of the experience. Take a break from your routine, enjoy a cup of joe and prepare to have your mind blown by Gregory Wilson.

Eric Jones The King of Cool
Bob Sheets Your Crazy Uncle (If Your Uncle Actually Had Mind-Blowing Skills)
Larry Wilson Master of Magical Madness

Eric Jones

This young man from Philly will be instantly recognizable to fans of “America’s Got Talent, where he wowed the judges and audiences alike with astonishing Close Up skills. lEric Jones is beginning to make a name for himself in the world of magic. Armed with sleight of hand, Eric dazzles his audiences with his digital dexterity. He uses these tools to politely deceive and entertain his audiences. Ordinary, everyday items become objects of fancy as Eric delicately handles them. Coins multiply, cards fly, and audiences cheer. An award winning performer, Eric’s magic has been showcased at Magic Castle in Hollywood, CA, and NYC’s Monday Night Magic, the longest running magic show in New York. Eric has appeared on television in 13 countries spanning 4 continents and has wowed dozens of A List celebrities. As an author, creator, performer and consultant, Eric's expertise is sought out by Fortune 500 companies such as Merrill Lynch, State Farm and Coca-Cola. Eric was a contestant on Season 2 of Penn & Teller: Fool Us where he successfully fooled the duo.

Bob Sheets

Bob Sheets excels at so many kinds of magic that it is difficult, at first blush, to categorize him. But, watch him working a crowd at the bar and there is no doubt that he is in his element. From the time he established himself at Marco’s Roman Lounge in the shadow of the Hotel Del Coronado through his tenure at the famed Tower Bar in Aspen straight through to founding the Brooke Farm Inn of Magic, Bob is the guy who has dedicated himself to being the life of the party—any party, (even if he has to throw it himself.) He is an irresistible force of nature. In the course of all his adventures Bob developed a unique set of skills that allow him to work in very unorthodox situations that would stymie the average magician. His colleagues speak in reverent tones of Bob’s ability to take absolute control of any bar crowd-- effortlessly. His legendary Card Stab routine propelled him to First Place at the International Close-up Competition at London’s Palladium and he has never paused to look back. Who’s got that kind of time? In recent years he has gained notoriety for his astounding presentation of the classic street swindle, the Three Shell Game. Once you see him perform it (and explain it) you’ll never fall prey to a street swindler again (unless it’s Bob Sheets, in which case, you’ll be laughing so hard you’ll feel like you definitely got your money’s worth.)

Larry Wilson

For the past five years Larry Wilson has surrounded himself with such a star-studded array of talent that he hoped no one would question how he managed to squirm into this rarified atmosphere. Alas! He was quickly identified as the thorn amongst roses. Only his deft ability to disemble and distract has prevented his forcible eviction from the proceedings. Since founding the nonprofit Education Renaissance of Nevada Initiative seven years ago Larry’s relentless commitment to bringing arts and education to Northern Nevada has blossomed like a beautiful topiary to capture the imaginations of thousands of Northern Nevadans, from as far afield as Lovelock to the glittering shores of Lake Tahoe. SPELLBINDERS continues to be the flagship event of the nonprofit, and Larry has abandoned all pretense of upstaging all these young whipper-snappers, preferring instead to outwit them with guile rather than talent. Larry’s legendary assistants, The Flying Cavettis, with whom he has been nominated three times as Stage Magician of the Year by the Academy of Magical Arts, may, or may not, be appearing with him. Who can say really when dealing with elemental forces of nature such as the Flying Cavettis? We can guarantee that if you think you detect the Cavetti’s signature musk-like scent they are, no doubt, likely to be in close attendance. Consider yourselves warned.

The Rundown

A succinct play-by-play of exactly how and when your mind will be blown.


This year the Thin Air Summit takes place inside the newly revamped, remodeled, renovated Renaissance Reno Downtown Hotel and it is going to be better than ever! The Renaissance is diagonally across the street from the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts, and the Basement, making it the absolute in convenience. A truly upscale environment worthy of the world’s greatest magicians, the Renaissance is a breath of fresh air-- literally. It’s not a casino so the air is not encrusted with decades of cigarette smoke and you won’t have to have your clothes autoclaved when you return home. Offering a number of social spaces to relax with friends, and the Shore Room, a Greek/Mediterranean-inspired menu prepared using fresh, seasonal ingredients, is the casual fine dining experience that you've been searching for in Reno. And if it’s eclectic you seek then you’ll be delighted with Bundox Bocce, home to Northern Nevada’s only indoor/outdoor bocce ball courts at the Renaissance where you can petanque yourself silly while indulging in casual American fare!

You're also right next door to The Basement, home of 7 Troughs Distilling, a fine drinking and eating establishment, Global Coffee (when Starbucks won’t cut it,) Sugar Love, purveyor of handmade chocolates, and Beautiful Bearded Man (where Larry Wilson maintains his sartorial style.) Within one block you will find restaurants ranging from LaFamiglia, fine Italian dining, to Wild River Grille, voted Best Restaurant in Reno (but, not most expensive!)

The Renaissance has arranged a screaming deal for attendees of the Thin Air Summit. But, rooms are limited, so don't delay.
Use this link to book your room today!


Each registration includes the warm-feeling of a good deed done. Whether you like it or not.

Registration for the Thin Air Summit is possible only via a $400 donation to Spellbinders, the International Festival of Magic.

Click the registration button below to donate $400 dollars to Spellbinders and we'll register you for the Thin Air Summit immediately.

Have questions? Please contact us at info@thinairsummit.info


Frequently A'd Q's.

Support The Arts!

Spellbinders is brought to you by Education Renaissance of Nevada Initiative, a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation.

Feel free to make a donation knowing that you are helping their mission to bring the arts and sciences to Northern Nevada. (Your donation may be tax deductible. Please consult your tax adviser or accountant.)

Learn more at nevadashines.org

©2019 The Education Renaissance of Nevada Initiative