A Master of Illustration
Revealing The Truth…
Harris “The Third” has spent the majority of his young life dazzling audiences. His classically trained performances have been featured on thousands of stages throughout the United States, and his magic-with-a message has captured the spotlight in over 15 countries on 5 continents. With such a resume its little wonder that ‘Harris III’ is becoming one of America’s most sought-after performers and event speakers.
More than a magician, this master of misdirection knows how to attract an audience and hold its attention. From spot lit stages in Asia and the Middle East, to the exclusive, members-only club of Manhattan’s Soho House, Harris’ illusions have captivated spectators in an unusually wide variety of venues.
Though only in his twenties, Harris’ sleight of hand has wowed teenagers at BigStuf Camps, amazed the staff of Elvis Presley Enterprises and stumped the executives of Southwest Airlines Corporate Headquarters. His straightjacket escapes have thrilled both t’ween girls, on the cross country Revolve Tour and their mothers, in arena size venues of Women of Faith and The Catalyst Conferences. And when he ‘saws’ his assistant/wife, Kate, in half, it never fails to entertain the married couples at countess Lifeway Marriage Conferences & Retreats.
Having mastered the tricks of his trade, Harris III has become, by any definition, World Class. In fact he may be the only illusionist on the planet with a list of out-of-this-world testimonials from NASA.
Given these many accomplishments, it is ironic that Harris’ career of misdirection began with an unintended trick… played on him.
When he was just a nine-year old sports fan, the only thing the Tennessee boy dreamed of was a baseball glove. But on Christmas day, after tearing through a mound of colorful paper, he found nothing to catch his falling hopes. However, at his grandparents’ house, Harris’ prospects improved when his grandmother revealed a box resembling the very dimensions of his dream. But raising the lid, his expectations fell again; for the container did not hold a magic mitt for his hand, but rather a collection of magic tricks, for practicing sleight-of-hand.
It took some time but the disheartened boy eventually warmed up to ‘Grandmother’s Gift’, and by the age of 11 Harris had turned its contents into a sport of his own.
Rather than just fooling his friends with a few card tricks, the boy immersed himself in magic. Enlisting the help of, Mr. McMichael, (an illusionist he first saw perform in the unlikely venue of a small country church), Harris spent hours, every day, rehearsing. Like a diligent athlete he practiced the rudiments prestidigitation and explored the science of misdirection. He polished his presentation and shined up his showmanship until this once disillusioned boy mastered the Art of Illusion, itself.
“…We trust our senses, we live our lives by them.” Harris explains. “But the art of illusion has taught me that things are not always what they seem. Far too often our focus gets shifted to matters that ultimately don’t matter. We get misdirected…”
The instructions Harris received from the mentor he first saw perform “in church”, opened his eyes; but not to the magical or the mystical, but rather to matters that truly matter – the spiritual.
Combining McMichael’s example with the unintentional lessons of his ninth Christmas, Harris decided to use all he had learned to teach others intentional, positive lessons. And wielding that mandate like a magic wand, the Tennessee teen’s metamorphosis into ‘Harris III’ was complete.
“…Every moment of misdirection I create on stage has a purpose; every illusion is intentionally tied together to enlighten, to inspire others to see the deception around them, to learn the truth about lies…and discover their own purpose.”
This rare brand of magic-with-a-message has raised theatre curtains around the world and opened doors in the most unlikely of places.
Harris has performed in some of the largest churches and well known faith-based institutions around the world. From United States and the Middle East to Asia he has inspired countless congregations and conventions, and illuminated the staffs of organizations like North Point Community Church, the Southern Baptist Executive Committee and Focus on the Family.
For these efforts Harris III is not only recognized by his growing audience, but also by his peers. Though only in the second decade of his career, this small town boy has already been accepted into the International Brotherhood of Magicians. He’s been welcomed into the membership of Hollywood’s famed Magic Castle, and recognized by The Fellowship of Christian Magicians for his outstanding excellence and professionalism. And in an unprecedented show of respect for such a young performer, Harris is the only illusionist to be featured on the cover of the FCM’s international trade magazine twice within the same decade.
His personal endorsements are equally impressive. The long list includes leadership guru, John Maxwell, financial expert and radio host, Dave Ramsey, musical icons like, Leigh Nash, NewSong, Jimmy Needham, Sanctus Real, Mac Powell of Third Day, and even second generation of pop royalty, Julian Lennon.
Yet beyond Harris’ ability to amaze the curious with his sleight of hand, is his talent with words. His knack for communicating “the evidence of things unseen,” often opens the eyes of his audience more than his visual misdirection. And that art of story telling has opened new doors of opportunity for Harris ‘The Speaker’ to conjure up words of inspiration at concerts, in seminars, and in his latest book, Senseless.
“…Magic is capable of creating moments of wonder that inspire and move people into a place of transformation. It’s about using this world, where seemingly anything is possible, to offer a new perspective, to get people to see the possibilities around them and wonder out loud, ‘What if?’ ”
The ever-growing demand for this master communicator is no illusion. For Harris III fans, there is nothing that can take the place of the excitement generated by one of his live performances…that is, until now.
Through an innovative blend of narrative film and his “Live” show experience, Harris, and his team, have created a never-before-seen presentation that is unmatched and uniquely original. The highly anticipated DVD is simply titled, Harris III – Master Illusionist.
The production combines Live performances of illusions like ‘The Rope Trick’ and the body-switching ‘Metamorphosis’, with an artistic film short. The beautifully shot featurette centers around a1920’s boy who learns both magic and the lessons of life from a Master Illusionist. Loosely based on Harris’ own evolution, the boy – turned headstrong young man – determines to outdo the Great Houdini.
The story’s lessons raise the curtain on the perils of Pride, the dangers of Deception and the transforming magic of finding one’s true purpose. In the words of the boy’s teacher, Mr. McMichael, (based on Harris’ real life mentor) “…The chains of Deception have many locks. But for everything there is a key.”
Whether he is doing a card trick in his man-on-the-street videos, swallowing fire on stage, collaborating on screenplays, or diving into an 85-gallon tank wearing a straightjacket and cuffs, Harris III is fulfilling his purpose. Through his misdirection he is revealing the everyday deceptions that detour us from the Truth. And with a masterful sleight of hand he is opening eyes, ears and hearts to the wonders around us… to matters that truly matter.
~ Barton Green