Magician, comedian come to Kenai Peninsula

Little did comedian Jamie Lissow know that when he came to Alaska for a gig 12 years ago, it would become such a permanent part of his life.

Lissow, who performs comedy nationally and recently starred in the television comedy series “Real Rob” with Rob Schneider, made the trip to perform at Kodiak Jack’s in Fairbanks over a decade ago. A year after that show, he married the owner’s daughter, Jessica.

Lissow will join magician Joseph Réohm for the next installment of the Kenai Peninsula College Showcase Series on Friday. Though he and his family bought a home in Fairbanks last year to be closer to his in-laws, this will be Lissow’s first time on the Kenai Peninsula.

“You can raise kids in LA, but I don’t hate my kids,” he joked. “I hope I’m going to live in Alaska as long as I possibly can, like until they force me to move to LA.”

The two men will perform back-to-back, beginning at 7 p.m. at the college.

KPC Showcase Coordinator Dave Atcheson said the college strives to bring in national acts when it can.

“I think having a magician is kind of neat,” he said. “In the past we had a guy that was a mentalist and then we had a hypnotist before, but we’ve never had a magician, at least not recently.”

Réohm, too, has ties to the Last Frontier. When he first visited three years ago to see an aunt who lives in Juneau, he said he was taken with his surroundings.

“We just hit it off and I was like, ‘Wow, I’d really like to start doing shows up here,” Réohm said.

In the years since, he has performed multiple times in Anchorage.

“I was born and raised in Seattle, Washington, so I love the Northwest,” Réohm said, adding that Alaska “was like Washington on steroids.”

Attracted to magic at an early age, Réohm currently lives in Hollywood, California and travels around the country and internationally to perform. Réohm and magician Naathan Phan won the finale episode of the first season of “Wizard Wars,” a magic competition show on the Syfy channel.

As a young boy, Réohm was introduced to magic by a family friend, describing the trade as a “bug” he got and never let go.

“I started when I was 5 years old, and that is when I realized that I wasted the first five years of my life,” he joked.

Both men said they alter or tweak their performances based on the types of venues in which they perform. For example, Réohm said he sometimes incorporates doves into his shows, but that becomes difficult when he travels great distances. In the absence of some of his aids, the audience becomes his largest prop, he said.

“I have a very particular show that just uses a lot of fun music and it’s just interactive,” Réohm said.

Lissow described himself as an observational comedian. He has been working to tailor some of his material to local audiences since making the state his home base.

“I’ve got some Alaska jokes I’m trying out that I’ve been developing over the last six months,” he said.

Lissow, too, felt the urge to perform at a young age, becoming interested in comedy when he was 9. He began going to law school while working on his standup comedy, only to get his first paid gig a week into the semester, after which he pursued comedy full-time.

“I literally wanted to be a comedian from such a young age,” Lissow said. “Literally, it was the only job that was real.”

Tickets will cost $5 for students and $15 for the general public. The show is open to those aged 17 and older.

Reach Megan Pacer at megan.pacer@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in Life

People gather in Ninilchik, Alaska, on Friday, Aug. 5, 2022, for Salmonfest, an annual event that raises awareness about salmon-related causes. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Unhinged Alaska: Bones

Just as we approached Ninilchik, we remembered that the Salmonfest would be in high gear

File
Minister’s Message: What a Friend we have in Jesus

Can Jesus really be your friend? Jesus said so Himself.

The procedure for this quick kimchi is much less labor-intensive than the traditional whole head method, and takes less time to ferment, making it ideal for first time kimchi-makers. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
Garden fail — but kitchen win nonetheless

This quick kimchi technique is less labor-intensive than the traditional method

Kate Lochridge stands by one of her paintings for a pop-up show of her work on Friday, Aug. 5, 2022, at the Homer Council on the Arts in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by MIchael Armstrong/Homer News)
Pop-up exhibit shows culmination of art-science residency

The exhibit by Kate Lochridge came about after her internship this summer as a National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration Ernest S. Hollings Scholar and Artist in Residence

File
Minister’s Message: The power of small beginnings

Tiny accomplishments lead to mighty successes in all areas of life

A copy of “Once Upon the Kenai: Stories from the People” rests against a desk inside the Peninsula Clarion’s offices on Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Off the Shelf: Hidden history

‘Once Upon the Kenai’ tells the story behind the peninsula’s landmarks and people

Artwork by Graham Dale hangs at the Kenai Art Center in Kenai, Alaska, on Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2022. These pieces are part of the “Sites Unseen” exhibition. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Apart and together

‘Sites Unseen’ combines the work of husband and wife pair Graham Dane and Linda Infante Lyons

Homemade garlic naan is served with a meal of palak tofu, butter chicken, basmati rice and cucumber salad. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
On the strawberry patch: Naan for a crowd

When it comes to feeding a group, planning is key

P.F. “Frenchy” Vian poses with a cigar and some reading material, probably circa 1920, in an unspecified location. (Photo courtesy of the Viani Family Collection)
Unraveling the story of Frenchy, Part 6

The many vital chapters in the story of Frenchy fell into place

File
Jesus, God of miracles, provides

When you are fishing or eating them, remember how Jesus of Nazareth used fish in some of his miracles

Sugar cookies are decorated with flowers of royal icing. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
Blooming sugar cookies

These sugar cookies are perfectly soft and delicious, easy to make, and the dough can be made long in advance