ARTS + ENTERTAINMENT
David Blaine to livestream flight with balloons near Lake Powell today
In his first live stunt in nearly a decade, magician David Blaine is hoping to attach himself to a number of helium-filled balloons and float miles into the sky just south of Lake Powell.
Blaine’s stunt Wednesday morning will see him sail 18,000 feet (3.4 miles) into the morning sky attached to a cluster of 52 helium-filled balloons. The whole time, Blaine will be narrating the flight on a YouTube stream.
“Ever since I was a kid I dreamed of flying,” Blaine said in a promotional video.
“When I was five years old my mom took me to see a movie about a boy that floats away on a bunch of balloons… I’ve never forgotten that image and now I’m going to make that image a reality.”
The original plan was to have the endurance performer take flight above his hometown of New York City on Monday, but weather and safety concerns scrapped the launch. So the team moved the event to Page Arizona.
“Arizona is one of the best locations for ballooning,” Blaine told Variety. “It allows for pretty optimal conditions.”
#DavidBlaineAscension is beyond anything that I could’ve imagined. It’s also really complex so it will now take place in Arizona. I’m hoping to ascend in a few days, so set a reminder to get notified when I take off. https://t.co/bVy2WU5kvM pic.twitter.com/JY3p2iQZeZ
— David Blaine (@davidblaine) August 30, 2020
Blaine said he needed a professional skydiver rating in order to get approval for the stunt. That involved performing more than 500 jumps and obtaining a commercial ballooning certification.
The FAA told The Arizona Republic that they are working closely with Blaine and his team. They issued approval for the flight after classifying the rig of balloons David Blaine will use as an experimental aircraft.
The YouTube stream on Blaine’s channel is expected to go live at 6:55 am where there will be an hour and a half of setup followed by an hour of flight.
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