Sat., Jan. 20, 8 p.m., $15-$19, The Sanctuary of the Samuel S. Fleisher Art Memorial, 719 Catharine St., 215-922-3456, www.fleisher.org
Rather than give itself over to another pottery exhibition, the Fleisher Memorial will soon offer Matthew J. Cassiere, aka Matt the Knife, a sideshow everyman with a resume that reads like one of Jim Rose's freaks (sword swallowing, mighty man lifting, etc.).
We'd even go so far as to say that Cassiere -- a highly regarded Ripley's Believe It or Not participant and Guinness World Records award winner -- practices a brand of magic that'd impress Penn & Teller, what with its audience-participatory feats of mentalism and escapism.
But for my money, it's his lectures on artful dodging and conning and grifting that are the most worthwhile. Fans of Ricky Jay's funny-carnie one-man shows will recognize something in the Knife's lit-witty raconteur, as he uses a silver tongue as sharp as the blades he swallows to discuss the manipulation of cards and minds alike.