Michael Carbonaro: The Gay Prankster We All Need

Michael CARBONARO

Michael Carbonaro is in a league all on his own. Although, that’s to be expected when you’re one-of-a-kind. A magician by trade, he’s now built a prosperous career out of being himself and putting his unique skills to the test—and doing what he does best, make us laugh (which, let's be real, we all need right now.) You can see this all unfold in his hit truTV show, The Carbonaro Effect, where he plays tricks on unsuspecting members of the public, all caught on a hidden camera.

Related | 10 Qs: Gay Magician Michael Carbonaro on Disguises, Pranking Shaq, and Getting the Guy

To commemorate the next season of the hilarious show, premiering on May 17, we caught up with Carbonaro to chat crazy pranks (including the one celeb he’d love to hoodwink), what we can look forward to in this new season, and whether or not his stunts lead to dates (despite the fact that he has a lovely husband). 

OUT: The new season is about to premiere, how is this one different from season’s past?

Michael Carbonaro: I'm in the midst of an existential crisis, so the material has gotten really warped... people turning to scarecrows and such. It's a hot mess, but it's still working. The crazier I allow myself to plunge into the madness of this ride, the better the show is. It’s a balance I have not really figured out. Ask my husband.

Favorite prank we have to look forward to this season?

MC: There's a lot of big scale effects this season, like people going back in time and bodies frozen into solid ice, but my favorites are still sometimes the little ones. I do a bit where I am mindlessly cloning rats with a laser in a reptile shop and this everyday dude just freaks out... He drops his jaw open for like a full minute. An all-time record for the show. It's rad.

I imagine you’re getting recognized more and more these days, what’s the craziest disguise you’ve had to wear?

MC: I went full on Kidman and rocked a silicone nose. I had it designed after this hot buddy of mine who has a great strong Grecian profile. Talk about got your nose! I totally stole his nose. I didn't look as solid and sexy as he, more like a muppet.

While you primarily focus on pranking regular people, is there a celebrity you’d love to prank?

MC: If I told you it would never happen!!! OK fine, Nick Jonas, watch your back.

Has anyone ever pulled a crazy prank on you? 

MC: I was shooting on my birthday, and the crew sent someone in, who I thought I was playing a prank on, but she was pranking me! She pretended to get really mad that she was on a hidden camera show and tore all her clothes off! I was terrified!

You’ve been married for a few years now, but do you ever pull pranks on your husband?

MC: Peter calls me out every time. He's quite a little tricketer himself. Were actually reworking an act we perform together to go out on the new tour.

You’re around people all the time, do any of the men you pull pranks on end up hitting on you?

MC: The magic pranking business has gotten me a couple phone numbers. But don't tell Peter.

The new season of The Carbonaro Effect premieres on May 17 at 10pm EST on truTV.

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