How a courageous 8-year-old named Ryan learned the secrets of OHM

Ryan (8) with his brother Sean (5) doing magic with Colin Joliat. Ryan knew the trick so he helped show it to his brother!

Several of our Open Heart Magic magicians have had the pleasure of working with an incredible young boy named Ryan over the past few months. He isn’t just a patient at Lurie Children’s Hospital, though. Ryan is a magician, and he’s one of the finest we’ve seen. Here’s how he came to discover the secrets of OHM:

Every once and a while I have to stay at Lurie’s hospital. One lucky Tuesday night that I was in the hospital a very special magician came to my room. He showed me, my mom and dad a couple tricks and we were WOWed! I learned Eye of the Mummy and took the secret oath and then I was able to WOW people.

Then my mom found out that Alyson Stevens, a friend of hers, was a volunteer and willing to show me and my brother all sorts of tricks. I learned The Coloring Book, Japanese Coin Case, and Martian Rope Trick. I have enough tricks now put on a magic show.

Then one day I had to be admitted again and was so excited that it was a Tuesday that I made a special sign that said “magic people please enter, thank you” and put it up on the door of my room. I was so excited that another magician came to visit and taught me Ying Yang Master Card Trick and The Double Secret Deck. I just love learning new tricks!
Then last week Colin came to take pictures with me and my brother and taught me The Lie Detector.

I just love the Open Heart Magic people and I look forward to seeing them again soon. Who knows, maybe one day I will be good enough at my tricks to be an Open Heart Magician myself!

Love, Ryan – age 8


Ryan is a constant source of happiness and inspiration for every magician who’s come in contact with him as well as those who have heard stories told time and again. Not only is he always excited to see magic, he loves learning new tricks. What more could a any magician want?

From his very first Secret Lesson, the Eye of the Mummy, it was clear that Ryan had the magic touch. He picked up on the techniques, secret moves, and even the importance of the story very quickly. He can make a ball disappear and reappear at his will as if he’d been doing it for a lifetime. He’s even tackled tricks usually reserved for teenagers!

One of our magicians, Colin Joliat, recently surprised Ryan while getting family photos taken. When asked if he would do a few tricks, Ryan was absolutely up to the task. Colin had this to say. “Ryan is incredibly impressive, both in his love of magic and his confidence. When he performed for me, it was as if I was seeing the trick for the very first time. I’m the one who taught him some of these tricks, and he still managed to sneak a move by me! If he can fool the OHM magicians, he can fool anybody! The biggest challenge now is to come up with something new should out paths cross again.”

Ryan’s positive attitude and love of learning is truly amazing. At this point he has collected and can perform almost all of the Open Heart Magic Secret Lessons. Unfortunately that also means he’s spent more time at the hospital than anyone should. Ryan is brave and upbeat in the face of adversity though, and we’re honored to call him one of our own.

Ryan's hospital door sign to guarantee that Hospital Magicians came to see him.