Greg Ladret

Coffee with … Greg Ladret

Magician, skating coach and actor - an eclectic triple threat

Pick a career, any career.

That variation on a magician’s introduction to a card trick certainly applies to Greg Ladret, who has worn many hats in many countries as a figure skater and magician.

Ladret, who along with wife Dawn coaches the Comox Valley Skating Club, is also a promoter (he brought three-time world champion Elvis Stojko to Courtenay to star in the skating club’s recent ice show), a clown (Twiggly Wiggly), and has had background roles in several Hollywood films.

He is good friends with world champion magician Shawn Farquhar and has worked with Martin Nash, “The Charming Cheat” from Parksville who was once considered the top card man in the world.

Ladret spent 10 years working for Feld Entertainment performing in shows such as Walt Disney’s World On Ice, Ice Follies and Holiday On Ice.

Ladret’s magic talents are no family secret.

“My dad (Al) did parlour tricks. When we’d go to Vancouver I’d watch a white-haired Harry Blackstone Sr. doing magic on TV. I thought ‘Oh my God, I’ve got to learn how to do that stuff.”

One of a magician’s staples is the linking rings, and those rings linked Ladret’s skating and magician skills.

“I was auditioning for a skating show in Los Angeles when I was 27. I went to Hollywood Magic and bought a set of linking rings. It didn’t come with any instructions, but I learned them playing around with them.”

Ladret then honed his skills on skating tours in Europe.

“I used to do a magic show for every opening night at a press party to promote the skating show,” he recalls.

He has also lent his legerdemain prowess to Nanaimo and Port Alberni, and says he would enjoy doing the same in the Comox Valley through local rec centres if there is enough interest.

Keeping with the “now you see it, now you don’t” theme, you might have to pay attention to his background roles in major movies. But his special skills (such as cowboy rope tricks) and acting lessons have had him rubbing shoulders with film legends such as Jack Lemmon, Meg Ryan, Olympia Dukakis, Hal Holbrook and Leslie Neilsen.

It’s all good fun for Ladret, who as a clown, magician or coach can make a smile appear on a face as easily as he can make a coin disappear.

 

Just Posted

Some Cumberland businesses closing for climate strike rally Friday

A Climate Strike Cumberland Solidarity Rally is set for outside the Cumberland municipal office

Comox contestant competes on Great Canadian Baking Show

Andrea Nauta auditioned for the show before but was lucky second time around

Comox hires former Nanaimo city manager as interim CAO

The position will be for an estimated six months

Cumberland doing more geotech work on dam

Allen Lake assessment shows small area of ‘unsuitable’ material needing more study

Cumberland joins other communities in plastic ban response

Village collaborates with Squamish, Tofino following court’s quash of single-use regulation

VIDEO: Trudeau asks Canada to look to current, not past, actions on race

Liberal leader says he never spoke about the racist photo because he was embarrassed

Horvat paces Canucks to 6-1 pre-season win over Oilers

Vancouver improves to 3-1 in NHL exhibition action

Legislature gifts, clothing, travel need better control, B.C. auditor says

Audit follows suspensions of managers by Speaker Darryl Plecas

‘Really disturbing:’ Trudeau’s racist photos worry B.C. First Nation chief

Wet’suwet’en Chief concerned the photos will sow fear in Indigenous communities

‘Unacceptable’: What politicians have to say about Trudeau in blackface

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi: ‘When I saw that picture last night, certainly it was a sucker-punch’

‘He’s trying to kill me’: Victoria police commandeer boats to reach screaming woman

No charges laid and civilians to be awarded honours after incident on Gorge Waterway

VIDEO: B.C. man accused of assaulting sex worker loses temper in interrogation

Defence lawyer says statements made by accused Curtis Sagmoen should be deemed inadmissible

John Horgan promises action after fatal mid-Island bus crash

Premier cites students, local Indigneous community as reason to repair the road

Teens charged in stabbing death of B.C. man in strip mall parking lot

Two youths, aged 15 and 16, charged in Aug. 16 killing of South Surrey’s Paul Prestbakmo

Most Read