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David Copperfield's Hocus Pocus

The magician’s tricks heal at L.A.’s Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

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If David Copperfield can make the Statue of Liberty disappear, can he do the same for your ulcer? Well, no. But that didn’t stop L.A.’s Cedars-Sinai Medical Center from creating a Copperfield channel on its in-house TV system last summer. The magician donated four hours of tricks to the hospital. ”There are two kinds of audiences,” says Copperfield. ”One audience treats magic as a puzzle and they try to figure it out, so it is therapeutic in that way. The other half likes to dream a little bit.” This fall, Cedars folded the magic works into its two-year-old Comedy and Magic channel, which includes vintage bits from Carol Burnett and Milton Berle. Meanwhile, Copperfield says he’s getting a positive response: ”They just keep showing it, so I guess people aren’t throwing tomatoes at the TV.”