Renowned as a Magician, Musician, Producer, Composer, Singer and Showman, Berry has headlined Premiere Venues & Festivals in over 40 countries. He has starred in Showrooms & Ballrooms from Las Vegas to Monte Carlo; Theatres & Performing Arts Centres from New York to Paris; Private Clubs from Hollywood's Magic Castle to London's Magic Circle; Exclusive Parties in Beverly Hills' Mansions, Scottish Castles & French Chateaus.
"The most elegant show I've ever seen! The magic was absolutely spellbinding, his music fit perfectly with the magic, and the script was insightful, intelligent and meaningful. A truly memorable evening!" - Tim Pendergast, Producer
Forty years of Professional Experience include Magic Galas and TV Specials, #1 Radio Hits, Composing for Ballet and Playing with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Performing at the 800th Venice Carnival and Singing in Europe's largest Opera House.
"An extraordinary magician, showman and singer, Berry lit up the stage, holding a record crowd of 3500 completely spellbound!" - Derek Lever, Producer, Winter Gardens Opera House
To understand the man behind the mystery, we need to go back to Jay's childhood. Growing up in the casino showtown of Reno, he was immersed in music, theatre and neon lights. Naturally drawn to the stage, he was singing and dancing from the age of 4. A magic kit soon followed and, by 8, he was playing cello in a youth orchestra and singing in the Sierra Boys’ Choir. As he landed lead roles in local shows and musicals, a destiny in the limelight seemed certain. Fresh from High School, he moved to Hollywood and soon became the youngest magician ever to perform at The Magic Castle.
Hailed as one of Magic's brightest young stars, it wasn't long before he was travelling the globe, performing in Cabarets and Gala shows, from Ballrooms in Beverly Hills to the historic Theatre-an-der-Wien in Vienna, from the Variety Arts Theatre in LA to the Folies Bergère in Paris. Along the way, he was featured on national and international TV Shows, seen by millions of viewers.
“In my entire career, I have never seen anything as convincing. It was real magic, delivered with precision timing and consummate skill.” – Mark Wilson, Grand Master Magician
Often copied but never equalled, Jay's legendary stage act, premiered at The Magic Castle in 1979. This surrealistic fusion of classic magic, evocative music and mystical effects quickly established him as one of the Art's brightest young stars. It became a sensation across the US and Europe and was broadcast on TV around the world. This was the act that took a top prize at the FISM World Magic Congress in 1982 and had its last performance in 1985, headlining the FISM Congress in Madrid.
Here is one of the few surviving tapes of the act, opening the "It's Magic Show" at the Variety Arts Theatre on Los Angeles in 1982.
“What a perfect act!” – Milt Larsen, Founder of The Magic Castle
As a visionary creator and performer, Jay was helping to shape the State-of-the-Art. Even the haunting, fog-filled scenes in the Musical, "Phantom", were influenced by Berry, who was consulted by the show's theatrical effects team. In 1985, he produced his first full show, writing the story, creating the effects and composing original music. Jay also co-produced a Dreamtheater in Germany, which was a forerunner to the many modern "Cirque" shows.
“His performance can only be described as PURE MAGIC! A true one of a kind magician, Jay is The Virtuoso of Magic!” - Gerry Griffin, The CalMagic Theatre
Jay's magical music was rapidly becoming a highlight of his shows. In 1990, he composed, performed and produced Symphony of Light, the first of 3 acclaimed instrumental CDs. Receiving international airplay, these recordings established Berry as a musician and composer. One of his songs was used for years in an Italian Soap Opera and he was comissioned to compose the score for an original Ballet. For this project, he was flown to Austria to perform with The Vienna Symphony Orchestra.
“The moment I heard Jay's heavenly music, I knew he was the perfect composer for my new ballet." - Luc de Lairesse, International Ballet Master
As his international music reputation grew, Berry was also a highly sought after speaker for Magic Clubs, Conventions and Universities. His inspirational talks on the Art of Magic and Theatrical Special Effects drew packed houses and received standing ovations from San Francisco to Stockholm, from Boston to Barcelona, from USC to Cambridge.
“A true visionary. A man who has gone beyond the boundaries. There are only a handful of magicians who are masters of the art. This man is one of them. Do whatever you have to do to get to one of his lectures or shows." - Anthony Brook, International Deputy SAM
As the millenium drew to a close, Jay was at the top of his game, performing for royal families and heads of state at an exclusive NYE Party in a secret chateau, secluded high in the French Alps. Taking it all in stride, Jay recalls, “Prince or pauper, it matters not, my job is the same. That 'Once upon a time' place of childhood innocence exists within all of us. We all crave the timeless experience of pure wonder. It's my responsibility to create that.”
“Jay Scott Berry is Awesome! His skill and technique are flawless and his timing and execution are incredible." - Joe Pon, Misdirections Magic, SF
A master sleight-of-hand Artist, equally adept at Close-up and Stage, Berry was being compared to the all-time greats of Magic. Reaching ever higher, he applied his lifelong experience in theatre to produce a series of Magic Festivals in Scotland. Held on the grounds of The Royal Palace of Falkland, Delgatie Castle and Stirling Castle, these family friendly celebrations of wonder showcased many of the world's top magicians, who performed for tens of thousands of avid magic fans. Expanding to England and across the USA, these Festivals also gave Jay an invaluable opportunity to hone his skills as a Showman and Emcee.
“The King of all Magicians!" - David Adamovich, President SAM #1
Never one to rest on his laurels, Berry continued touring, headlining at Magic Venues and Conventions the world over. His conference for a packed house at London's famed Magic Circle received a full standing ovation, something very rarely seen in this exclusive club. He was also performing at Trade Shows and working as a creative consultant for many top corporations, including Disney, BASF, Apple, Bank of America, Nissan and AMD.
“The most Magical Act I've ever seen!" - Dean Dill, Master Magician
While maintaining peak performance in Magic, Jay continued his relentless pursuit of musical excellence. In 2010, he sought out legendary producer, Charlie Chalmers, who had worked with the best in the biz. Pulling together an all-star team of musicians and vocalists, Berry flew to Branson, Missouri. Feeling right at home in this Ozark mountain showtown, he gave concerts at The Americana Theatre, while working with Chalmers on a new album: "Keepsake".
“A world-class showman and a fantastic concert!” - Michael Wilcox, The Americana Theater
Berry's heartfelt renditions of timeless songs were a success, producing three #1 radio hits including what many consider to be the best recording of "Hallelujah" ever. Even Chalmers declared it "A Masterpiece!" That year, Jay was nominated for a string of music awards, taking home the New Music Weekly Award for "Best New Artist". This led to headline shows on music festivals around the globe from Canberra and Tamworth in Australia to The Earl's Court Festival in London and the 800th Carnival in Venice.
“One of the big success stories of 2011 and one of the hottest new acts on the national and international music scene.” - New Music Weekly, Hollywood
Berry was now a one man tour-de-force. In 2012, he headlined the prestigious 4F Close-up Convention, the FISM World Magic Congress and the Blackpool Magic Convention. At the largest gathering of magicians in history, Jay was, as one might guess, centre stage, emceeing the International Gala. What was unexpected was his show-stopping performance of "Hallelujah", which brought down the house. As the dust settled, it was generally agreed that his performance was "One of the best ever!"
"Wow! Absolute class. I left with a big smile on my face. Really stunning magic!" - Kevin McMahon, Festival Director
From the Palace Theatre in Zagreb to The Nouméa Casino in New Caledonia, Berry circled the globe, fine-tuning his Synergy of Magic and Music. A 50 city European Tour included shows and concerts in Castles and Cathedrals. He played to sold-out crowds at the world's top Magic Venues, from Wizardz in Orlando to Smoke & Mirrors in Bristol, earning rave reviews and standing ovations. Jetting back to Hollywood, he achieved a career milestone, becoming one of the very few to have performed 1000 shows at The Magic Castle.
“A WONDERFUL Show!!!” - Erika Larsen, President, The Magic Castle
And so we arrive at present day where Jay is living happily ever now in an idylic rural town in Australia. Together with partner, Jenn, he is enjoying life with their children while setting up a state-of-the-art, multimedia studio. It is here that our master wizard is actively conjuring his most ambitious production ever.
"If I've learned anything it's that theatre itself is Magic. The lights go down and we are transported into a mystical world of fantasy and dreams. It's the Art of the Magician to guide the audience through this realm of wonders. It's the Art of the Musician to create an enchanting, evocative soundscape for the voyage.”
With all the passion and enthusiasm of youth coupled with the experience and wisdom of age, something wonderful is bound to happen. In fact, this "Theatrical Fusion of Wondrous Magic and Live Music" has all the ingredients of a Magnum Opus. So, when many would be winding down, Jay is, as one might expect, still cranking it up, preparing for the world premiere of Incantations on Sept 21.
“One can no more reveal the Real Secrets of Magic than one can take apart a piano to find the music inside. The magic isn't in the tricks any more than the music is in the piano. They can only exist in that timeless moment of the performer and the performance. There and then, anything is possible!”