Tricking to Maui

If David Copperfield could make a historic monument like the Statue of Liberty disappear, why couldn't he do the same to Cher? Surely the aging pop diva must be dying to get away. Her farewell concert tour just keeps dragging on. Even after her parting performance was aired on network television, it seems like we might be saying so long, Cher for a long, long time. Hey, Copperfield, do her (and all of us) a favor, will ya? Pull the old abracadabra on the old broad.

Well, we might get lucky. The smoky-eyed magician (once named among the world's sexiest people by People magazine) could pluck Cher from the audience during An Intimate Evening of Grand Illusion this week at the Jackie Gleason Theater of the Performing Arts. (As if that will happen.)

Among the illusions Copperfield does plan on executing is transporting a volunteer audience member from a spot above the orchestra seats to a sandy beach in Maui. Total travel time? Nine seconds. I nominate Cher. After all the touring, she deserves a free trip to Maui, and besides, she might get lost in transit once and for all. But the mighty man of magic promises that surely will not happen. "I haven't lost track of anyone yet," he reassures during a telephone interview from Manhattan. Still supermodel Claudia Schiffer's ex advises his fans to come prepared to take a trip.

"Bring a change of underwear," he suggestively suggests. Even if he doesn't pick you for the Maui trip, the undies might come in handy for another trick that he calls ShortsChange. According to a press release plugging his appearance, Copperfield "persuades two female volunteers from the audience to lend him a 'personal item of clothing' for a magical exchange David never tires of performing."

So it's kinda like a panty raid, right? "It's more of an event," notes Dave. "I'm not trying to trick anyone. I'm trying to involve them in an experience."

He goes on to humbly admit that he's just a regular schmo. He makes no claims to supernatural powers. He couldn't find Osama bin Laden even if he beamed himself and Donald Rumsfeld to West Pakistan. "My job is to surprise, fascinate, and create wonders everywhere," he says. "I think there's many ways of creating wonderful things that are miraculous. What could be more miraculous and amazing than creating a baby?" (Judging by recent news reports, Claudia Schiffer has proved to be the better magician on that front.)

He goes on to point out that everyday mundane things are just as magical as his levitating over the Grand Canyon. Some of his favorites? The Internet, microwave ovens, and "how a finger heals." Cher would definitely dig that last one. After all the tucks and pulls and lifts and procedures she's undergone, she's become the ultimate poster girl for the magic of the healing process.