Mario The Maker Magician Returns For Mini Maker Faire

Mario Marchese, better known as Mario “the Maker Magician,” will perform at the Fredonia Mini Maker Faire held at the State University of New York at Fredonia on Saturday. Photo by Rebecca Handler

“We can do no great things — only small things with great love.”

Mario Marchese’s humble approach to entertaining thousands of children is best summed up by his favorite quote. It’s a mindset he’s lived by since he first decided to become a full-time magician 12 years ago.

“I believe that we all have a very specific purpose in this life and that we discover it by chasing our passions with child-like excitement,” Mario said. “As we master these passions, they can lead us to help people… help them be less afraid, or not to take life so seriously, to bring happiness wherever we go.”

Mario, better known as Mario “the Maker Magician,” spends several months a year traveling for performances. He has graced the set of “Sesame Street” and most recently opened for magician David Blaine for his 2018 live tour. Finding his purpose was never a question, but developing into the performer he is today was a craft all its own.

“For the first several years of my career, we stayed in the New York City area, honing my performance and building our brand,” Mario said. “It wasn’t until our children were born that we made the decision to expand into touring, three or four years ago.”

Mario will be making a return to the Fredonia Mini Maker Faire held at the State University of New York at Fredonia on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Accompanying him will be old favorites like Marcel the Mechanical Monkey and Mr. Lamp the Robotic Lamp. Also with Mario, standing in his corner, will be his family: his wife, Katie; daughter, Gigi, 7, and son, Bear, 4. For the past four years he and his family have traveled together for all of his performances.

“We wouldn’t have it any other way. It may not be the easiest, or most economical, way to do things, but traveling together is an experience that bonds us,” Mario said.

“We want our kids to have this education, to see all parts of our country and the world, to meet people of all different backgrounds, and to experience what our work means to us. For us, there is no separation between work and family. We are all in it together. We love what we do. It’s a lifestyle.”

An extension of his lifestyle can be found in the way he travels from show to show. Three years ago, Mario and his family purchased a 1971 VW bus to use when the weather permits.

As a magician who prides himself on making and fixing his own materials, a bus that may or may not arrive to its destination in one piece seemed fitting.

“It is our tour vehicle of choice,” he said. “No A/C, super slow, but there’s something about traveling through the country with the windows down, in a not-always-reliable vehicle, that makes the experience that much richer. You meet more people, you get outside more, you take more breaks and you breathe in your atmosphere.”

Mario will perform two free shows inside the SUNY Fredonia Science Center at 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday.