On February 12, master magician and mentalist Lawrence Larouche and his Majinx team are presenting a fun and dynamic virtual show to raise funds for Arbor Gallery.

A seasoned magician, Larouche and partner Cynthia Martin have performed hundreds of shows a year through Ontario, Quebec and Eastern Canada, right up until the pandemic hit in 2020. Up to the challenge, they developed and perfected live presentations online, innovating with their show ‘Virtually Impossible’ – an interactive show that has been enchanting young and old with magic and mind-reading.

As friends of the gallery, Majinx offered to use the show as a fundraiser.

“We wanted to help Arbor Gallery which has been a staple of the community for years,” Larouche explains, “Art has always played a monumental part in my life and I believe that it is an integral part of society. Without arts, the world would be dark and dull.”

‘Virtually Impossible’ is fully interactive, using the Zoom online platform, allowing the magician to interact with everyone in his audience. Perhaps best of all, only one ticket per household is needed to attend the show.

“This is a totally live and interactive virtual event,” continues Larouche, “You are not just watching the show – you are in the show!”

Information about this fun fundraiser can be found on the Arbor Gallery Facebook page. Tickets are sold on Eventbrite and Larouche is donating 50 per cent of proceeds to the gallery.

“We are so grateful to Lawrence and Cynthia for doing this,” says Sylvie Bouchard, Arbor Gallery’s Chair of the Board. “As a community-oriented arts organization, many of our activities are deliberately affordable, or free. However, with COVID, our revenues have plummeted and we need the community’s help to keep us alive and thriving.”

Young local artists excited to show their artwork

The doors reopen on February 10 at the gallery, with a very special exhibition titled ‘On Your Mark’ – A show of creative arts from the students of Art and Dream Studio.

Organized by well-known local art teacher Stephanie Pete, the show will feature artwork by her young students – ranging from portraiture and painting to illustration. This will give enthusiastic young artists a first chance to exhibit their artwork in a formal gallery setting.

“We are quite excited to present this exhibition,” Bouchard says. “We are offering the space to help budding artists to feed the inner flame and continue developing their art.”

Bouchard said Arbor Gallery is looking at ways to branch out more into helping upcoming generations to appreciate and pursue arts.

“We would like to be a catalyst to help young artists to explore the joy of creating and displaying their artwork,” Bouchard said. “We can achieve this with the help of philanthropy and charitable donations.”

Collected funds will allow the gallery to continue to present artwork and performances by a variety of artists, local and from out-of-town, as well as programming that makes art in all its forms available to the entire community, Bouchard said.

Arbor Gallery Cultural Centre is located at the heart of Vankleek Hill, 36 Home Avenue and can be reached at [email protected] Information about the virtual magic show and ‘On Your Mark’ exhibition can be found on the gallery’s Facebook page. Gallery hours for February are Friday to Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Public health measures are in place.

Master Magician and mentalist Lawrence Larouche at work in his magical workshop. Submitted photo

‘On Your Mark’ – A show of creative arts from the students of Art and Dream Studio’ will be presented at the Arbor Gallery beginning February 10. Submitted photo