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David Kwong        

Cruciverbalist, Magician & Founder of Misdirectors Guild, Inc.

As a magician and New York Times crossword puzzle constructor, David Kwong mixes puzzles and prestidigitation. He's the founder of the Misdirectors Guild, an elite group of magicians that specialize in illusion for film, television and theater. Most recenlty, the Guild is working on "Deception," a pilot for ABC that Kwong is co-producing.

He is a frequent crossword writer for the NYT, LA Times, and WSJ, and his puzzles are marked by clever, outside-the-grid thinking. Kwong is the puzzle and secret code consultant for NBC's "Blindspot" and his TED Talk on illusion and puzzles has garnered over 1.5 million views.

Prior to founding Misdirectors Guild, Kwong was a member of the DreamWorks Animation story department, serving as Magic Consultant on a variety of films including "Now You See Me,"(2013), "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone,"(2013) and "The Immigrant"(2013).

Speech Topics

The Benefits of Cross-Pollination

David champions combining seemingly unrelated fields to yield a synthesis that is fresh and innovative. David demonstrates how he took his three fields of expertise — illusion, puzzles, and cinema — and created an exciting new genre of storytelling in Hollywood. With a glimpse behind the scenes of Now You See Me and a demonstration of some of his signature performance pieces, David discusses the value of fusing together one’s passions and areas of expertise.

The Illusion of Cinema

Both filmmakers and magicians use illusion to tell stories. David Kwong, the magician behind the hit caper Now You See Me speaks about his work as Hollywood’s premiere magic consultant. In addition, David and the Misdirectors Guild have designed illusions for The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, The Immigrant, and Paranormal Activity 4. David will discuss the synthesis of magic and storytelling by expounding on some of the fundamental principles of illusion.

Creating Order out of Chaos

In a world of Twitter and RSS feeds, how can one make sense out of all the scattered bits of information that we are inundated with each day?

Through a series of "mental gymnastics," David collects vast amounts of data and orders them in his brain. As a magician, puzzle creator, and Hollywood producer, David demonstrates how he synthesizes these seemingly disparate fields via a tour de force of sleight of hand and puzzles.

Think Inside The Box: Creativity and innovation within constraints and parameters

People are at their most creative when they innovate within a given set of boundaries. How does one tell a clever story while obeying the construction rules of a crossword puzzle (e.g. rotational symmetry, word count), the three-act structure of a screenplay, or the sensitive angles of a stage illusion? We are at our most creative when we design a new form for something familiar, and subsequently express it in a novel and compelling way. David will demonstrate some of his groundbreaking puzzles and illusions by way of inspiring a new method of problem solving.


Watch This Magician's Mind-Bending Illusion Very Closely.. It Makes ...
Magician and New York Times crossword puzzle wizard David Kwong says we're wired to solve puzzles and make order out of chaos -- and he's got a trick to ...

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