Nothing is less magical than health and safety laws, but they’ve been an overbearing presence in the magic industry for decades. Whenever you involve a member of the audience without having them sign a waiver, you’re opening yourself up to potential legal trouble.
Like the trouble currently facing David Copperfield. The endlessly popular illusionist is currently fighting a civil suit brought by one Gavin Cox, who claims he received life-altering injuries while taking part in a trick during a performance in Las Vegas.
Cox claims he was “hurried with no guidance or introduction through a dark area under construction with cement dust and debris, causing him to slip and fall.” Copperfield had to reveal the methodology behind the trick as part of the court proceedings.
Magician Murray Sawchuck believes that saying Cox was injured “during” one of Copperfield’s tricks is a bit of a stretch, and that revealing the secret behind the trick was a waste of time because Cox’s injury “could have happened anywhere.”
What do you think? Should Copperfield be held liable for Mr. Cox’s injuries? And if he is, do you think this will have a chilling effect on audience participation? Sound off in the comments section.