The Portuguese illusionist who left the judges of “America's Got Talent” in ecstasy

Television Solange Kardinaly has been an illusionist “forever”. A Guinness World Record earned her an invitation to the famous talent show.

With a successful performance.

Solange Kardinaly was born in Leiria and belongs to the third generation of illusionists in her family. She is the cousin of the famous circus artist Victor Hugo Cardinali and began learning tricks when she was a child. Although she had the support of her family in the early years of her career, when she decided to dedicate herself to circus arts full time, she lost the support of her parents. However, the obstacles did not keep her from her calling. Now 33 years old, she surprised all the judges on one of the most famous and competitive talent shows in the world, America’s Got Talent.

“My evolution was not well received within the family. Unfortunately, I receive constant attacks from my parents because they never accepted my passion. When I started to fly higher, they started to see me as a rival”, she begins by revealing to NiT.

Solange’s talent was evident at an early age. She was already performing at the age of four, and at the age of nine she ventured into solo magic acts — and she never stopped. She won her first trophy a year later, and at the age of ten she won the revelation award in the international competition “Magic Valongo”. At just 15 years old, she worked as a magic instructor on the reality show “Circo das Celebridades”, on TVI, in 2006.

The theaters, cabarets and circuses where he presents his art, illusionism, have become his habitat.”I have always lived in the midst of the spectacle, for which I feel a huge passion. For me it is the art of making people dream”, highlights Solange.

Born in Vila Nova da Barquinha, she left Ribatejo at the age of 22. She went to France to do a circus tour and ended up being invited to perform in the “Le Plus Grand Cabaret du Monde”, the iconic circus programme on the France 2 channel.

In 2018, she won first place at the Almussafes International Magic Festival in Spain, becoming the first woman to achieve this feat in 26 years. In Portugal, also in 2018, she was distinguished as magician of the year by the Portuguese Association of Illusionism, having been the first woman to receive such recognition.

Year after year, the circus artist dedicates herself daily to improving her performances, in search of excellence and perfection. As a result of this effort, she entered the Guinness World Record with a record of 25 costume changes in just one minute. “Without a doubt, the greatest challenge of my life,” she emphasizes. After achieving this feat, she was surprised with an invitation to perform on this year’s edition of “America’s Got Talent.”

The artist took to the stage wearing a blue denim dress and cap. Within seconds, to the sound of Madonna’s “Material Girl,” her look changed to red. Over the course of two minutes, she made five outfit changes, each with new details. The video of the performance, shared on YouTube, has already surpassed 1.5 million views.

Solange, who dedicates herself to illusionism full-time, also designs and creates clothes for other artists. Her interest in fashion has been combined with her magic act, which she describes as being “innovative”, “current” and full of “rhythm and energy”.

“It’s very difficult to get into ‘America’s Got Talent’ and I managed to be the only illusionist from the Iberian Peninsula to take part in all the sessions”, she highlights, happy with the achievement.

The highlight of her performance came at the end, when she surprised the judges by changing from a short pink dress, throwing white confetti that turned into a dress of the same color, but longer, with lace on the chest.

The judges’ reaction was unanimous and Solange was immediately qualified for the semi-final. Considered “the best quick-change artist” on the show, Simon Cowell was full of praise. “Normally, in performances of this kind, the woman who does the changes is always accompanied by a man who does absolutely nothing. The fact that you did everything alone made the performance infinitely better”, highlighted the British judge. After going straight through to the next phase, the Portuguese illusionist will soon begin the qualifying rounds.

Solange sees magic as a dream that she is part of, always facing the constant challenge of innovating to captivate the audience. Although she is known for her costume changes, she always tries to present other acts in her shows, such as great illusions and close-up tricks.

Currently, although she has several ideas in mind, she does not have any shows scheduled in Portugal. However, the artist hopes that the opportunity will arise soon. “I really want the Portuguese public to be able to feel my magic up close,” she confessed.

Click through the gallery to see some of the illusionist’s looks.