Rodzilla a thrilla on return visit to old stomping grounds

Callie Hermanson
Lakeside Leader

On July 18, Rodney Fortin and his wife Tracy Fortin of Rodzilla performed for children in the Slave Lake town office building.

Fortin says he has been doing magic officially full time since 2014 but has been doing magic tricks and entertaining for almost 20 years. He mentions Rodzilla was actually created in Slave Lake in 2014.

Fortin says he received the name Rodzilla after kids started calling him Godzilla due to his size, but then the kids thought up Rodzilla because of his name Rodney.

Rodzilla has performed across the world at various places and for different events such as festivals, churches, libraries, schools and birthday parties.

Before Rodzilla moved away from Slave Lake in 2014, they performed at approximately 60 birthday parties in the Slave Lake region.

This coming up week Rodzilla will be performing in New York.

Rodzilla has performed across the globe in Asia (the Philippines) and Europe.

Fortin says everytime him and his wife perform they receive a 98 per cent return rate.

“Places always get us to come back three or four times.”

Fortin says he actually got into magic from a pastor he was working with when he was living out in Smithers British Columbia.

The pastor wanted him to do children’s works alongside the youth work they had already been doing.

Fortin ended up buying a ventriloquist dummy and some magic stuff online to entertain the kids, and within a few months, people were asking him to do performances and parties.

After that, Fortin says, he realized he had something there and within a year he was putting on full-on shows.

“Everything is self-taught,” he says. Adding he had to invest a lot of resources to get to where he is at.

Fortin states some of the most basic tricks he does might cost up to or more than $2,000 and so he really had to invest a lot.

Some of the most popular tricks include the magic wand routine. He says he does it at every show.

The trick consists of a series of wands that he uses and a straight jacket he calls the impossible jacket; he has to get out of it in a minute or less or something ‘bad’ happens.

The shows are gauged at children from kindergarten to Grade 6, but Rodzilla also does adult shows with more of a mentalist type of feel to them.

“All our shows are clean, we advertise clean shows,” says Fortin.

If kids want to know magic, Fortin says he will teach them. He has held magic camps or after school clubs and had kids out.

The Fortins also wrote a book together that they read at the show for kids to enjoy. It is about a little boy magician and his sidekick and pet rabbit who is afraid of the dark.

The book is called Cedrick and His Fearful Rabbit.

Rodzilla doing a magic trick with a child from the audience during his performance July 18 in the town office building.

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