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Illusionist Darcy Oake to honour late brother with four Winnipeg shows

The Winnipeg-born performer lost his brother, Bruce Oake, to a drug overdose in 2011.

Illusionist Darcy Oake is performing in Winnipeg June 6-9. All proceeds will go towards an addiction treatment centre in the city.

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Illusionist Darcy Oake is performing in Winnipeg June 6-9. All proceeds will go towards an addiction treatment centre in the city.

For illusionist Darcy Oake, no amount of magic could make his older brother Bruce reappear after he died from a heroin overdose at the age of 25.

Almost six years later, Oake and his parents – well-known Hockey Night in Canada sportscaster Scott and mother Anne – are doing what they can to ensure their troubled loved one, a former athlete who struggled with drug addiction, didn’t die in vain.

Beginning Tuesday, June 6, the Winnipeg native who captured worldwide attention as a finalist on Britain’s Got Talent a few years ago with his jaw-dropping performance, will begin four nights of benefit shows at the Burton Cummings Theatre.

All proceeds are going towards the Bruce Oake Recovery Centre, a state-of-the-art, not-for-profit long-term treatment facility being established in the city for people who, like Bruce, fall victim to drugs and alcohol addiction.

“My heart and soul is really in this show which we have been working on for the past few months,” Oake said, referring to him and his crew. “It’s the one I am most proud of because it’s so personal.”

Oake said initially, there were going to be two performances, However, the outpouring of support from Winnipeggers when tickets went on sale was “so incredible,” he added two more.

“It really means so much to my family that the community is coming out to pay not just money to see the show, but to do it to support this cause.”

“I’m also very grateful to the people at the Burt,” the 29-year-old said. “They have been great and are even donating the venue to use for the shows.”

The goal for the Bruce Oake Foundation is to raise approximately $1.6 million for the centre that will provide treatment, resources and skills necessary for residents to successfully re-enter society.

Oake said with the addition of the two extra shows, tickets are still available at ticketmaster.ca.

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