Childhood & Early Life
Liang-Shun Lim was born on September 25, 1991, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. His parents were born in Singapore. He has one elder brother, Yi, and a younger sibling. He was 2 when his family moved to Singapore, where he initially attended a ‘PAP’ kindergarten at Bukit Panjang and then the 'Naval Base Primary School.'
Considering the stressful educational system in Singapore, Lim's mother chose to homeschool her children.
Lim was 11 when the family moved to the U.S. and settled in Acton, Massachusetts, where he attended the 'Acton-Boxborough Regional High School.' He then attended the 'School of Music' of 'Lee University' in Tennessee and graduated with a double major in piano and telecommunications. He was also a member of the 'Choral Union' ensemble.
Lim developed an interest in music when he was 9. He began pursuing his interest by playing the violin that his grandmother had gifted him. However, he soon became frustrated and smashed the instrument. Lim then switched over to the piano.
He gradually gained a keen interest in playing the piano and decided to make it a career. He would practice for hours and eventually earned a university degree in piano.
Along with music, Lim developed an interest in magic, too. Yi introduced him to card tricks and recommended that he watch 'YouTube' videos to learn the tricks.
Following his elder brother's suggestion, Lim began following 'YouTube' videos on card magic tricks and learned them. Eventually, he became a skilled magician and even created some of his own tricks and techniques.
Lim believes American illusionist, endurance artist, and extreme performer David Blaine and his early TV specials inspired him a lot. He was enthused by Blaine's stage presence and closely observed his body language, which helped him become an overall performer.
Unfortunately, Lim was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome in 2011. The condition eventually stalled his music career, as doctors stated that he needed to let his wrist rest for a while. Since his university curriculum required him to play the piano for 20 hours a week and he had to practice card tricks simultaneously, Lim chose the latter. He took a year-long sabbatical from the school and then began his career as a magician.
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Lim began his career by launching his self-titled ‘YouTube’ channel on August 25, 2011. The channel hosts various magic tricks and has accumulated over 890 thousand subscribers to date.
The same year, he won the 'Adult Card Magic I.B.M.' and the 'North American Adult Card Magic' (Joint S.A.M. and I.B.M.).
While on his sabbatical, Lim represented North America in the 2012 'Fédération Internationale des Sociétés Magiques (International Federation of Magic Societies) World Championship’ and earned the sixth spot.
Back then, even though Lim had earned prominence as a magician, he was still considering music as a probable career. He eventually decided to become a full-fledged magician when a talent agent scouted him in 2013, while he was performing at the world championship.
The agent offered him an opportunity to tour China. With this, Lim made his debut as an itinerary magician. He also made some changes to his routine, such as reducing the length of narrations in his acts and limiting them to only 20 minutes. He did this because he did not speak Chinese, and this routine later became a highlight of his shows.
In 2014, Lim won the 'North American Joint S.A.M. and I.B.M’ “People’s Choice” honor. He also won the 'Fédération Internationale des Sociétés Magiques World Championship' for “Close-Up Card Magic,” the following year.
The world championship earned Lim a contract from the producers of the magic reality show 'Penn & Teller: Fool Us.' The makers were thoroughly impressed by his 'YouTube' videos and offered him a spot on the show. His 'Fool Us' video was later uploaded on 'YouTube' and received over 50 million ''views.''
Lim's success on 'Fool Us' brought him several invitations to perform at various venues, such as the 'House of Magic' in Macau, China, where he delivered the best gig of his career until that point. He performed his trademark "52 Shades of Red" in one of his 'YouTube' videos, titled 'Pray for Paris,' as a tribute to the victims of the November 2015 Paris attacks.
In 2015, Lim received an offer to appear on 'America's Got Talent,' which he turned down. In March 2016, Lim's left thumb was severely injured while practicing a new card trick. He had to undergo surgery to repair two of his damaged tendons.
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After resting for about a month, Lim made a comeback a month later, with a 30-minute show, performing ''52 Shades of Red.'' The following year, he made a special appearance on ‘Fool Us.’
Lim thought it was the right time for him to make an appearance on 'America's Got Talent.’ He was also motivated by his fiancée to do so. He thus joined the 13th season of the show. On the show, Lim focused on stage presence rather than just exhibiting his tricks. Hence, his routines included lengthy dialogues to engage the audience. He also used his piano skills to contribute to the background music for his final show.
On September 19, 2018, Lim was announced as the 'America's Got Talent’ winner. Along with the prize money of $1 million, he received an offer to perform a special act at the 'Paris Theater' at 'Paris Las Vegas.'
Lim was invited to participate in the first season of 'America's Got Talent: The Champions' and won it. That year, he also received the 'Best Close-Up Magician Merlin Award.'
His two back-to-back 'America's Got Talent’ victories earned him appearances on several talk shows, such as 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,' 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show,' and 'The Today Show.' In October 2019, Lim bagged a long–term contract to perform at the 'Terry Fator Theatre,' at the 'Mirage Casino Hotel,' Las Vegas.
In 2020, Lim toured with 'The Illusionists,' a theatrical magician troupe, and also performed a solo show throughout the U.S. He also made two guest appearances in the second season of the 'America's Got Talent: The Champions,' first as part of an act performed by 'Britain's Got Talent' contestant "Magician X" (Marc Spelman) and then as part of 'Britain's Got Talent' contestant Colin Cloud's routine.
Family & Personal Life
Lim is married to professional dancer Casey Thomas. The two had met in 2015, at 'Studio City,' a hotel and casino resort in Macau, while he was on his China tour. Back then, she was an assistant to another magician. They performed at the 'House of Magic' show together.
They got married at the 'Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa,’ on August 19, 2019.
Both Lim and Casey are 'Star Wars' fans.
The two now live in Boston, Massachusetts. Lim holds both Canadian and American citizenships.
Lim is a supporter of 'Charity Water,' which provides clean water to Africans. He once appeared in a video for the charity, as a gesture of his appreciation for the organization. He also bought their signature deck of cards, which he sometimes uses for his routines.
He also supports 'Product Red,' a non-profit organization working against AIDS.