How Neil Patrick Harris Became a Magician and Came to Run 1 of the Most Exclusive Magic Clubs in the World

Neil Patrick Harris is a celebrity of many talents. He began acting at a young age, and also became a talented singer. However, you may not have known that Neil Patrick Harris is also a great magician. Not only that, but he used to run one of the most exclusive magic clubs in the world, the Magic Castle. 

Neil Patrick Harris is a versatile talent who has been working for over 30 years

Part-time magician Neil Patrick Harris attends the premiere of Netflix's Uncoupled
Neil Patrick Harris | Monica Schipper/Getty Images for Netflix

Harris got his big break in 1989 when he starred in Doogie Howser, M.D., where he played a teenage doctor who tried to balance being a practicing doctor and a normal teen. Most will know him from his role in How I Met Your Mother, where he played Barney Stinson for nine seasons. The CBS sitcom was a huge success, with many citing Harris as their favorite character.

He has also had roles in several movies including Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, Starship Troopers, The Smurfs, Gone Girl, and The Matrix Resurrections. He has won an Emmy award for his guest role in Glee and a Tony award for his role in Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Neil Patrick Harris became a magician to get into the Magic Castle

In an interview with WIRED, Harris answers many of the internet’s most searched questions. One of the questions is “Is Neil Patrick Harris really a magician?” The actor explains that he had a love for magic from a young age, growing up in a small town in New Mexico, where he used to go to the local magic shop and learn basic tricks. When he heard about an exclusive club called the Magic Castle in Los Angeles, Harris became a magician so he could become a member. 

“I heard about this thing called the Magic Castle, which was a private club in Los Angeles, but you couldn’t go unless you were a magician, and you couldn’t get in unless you knew the secret password,” Harris said. “My father, who was an attorney, his secretary got to go to the Magic Castle and she refused to tell me. So, I became a junior member. I auditioned when I was in Los Angeles playing a doctor person, and I know the secret password now.”

Harris then climbed the ladders of the Magic Castle hierarchy where he eventually started to run the show. 

“Then I became a regular member and then I was on the board of directors and then I became the president of the place,” Harris shared. “Changed stuff around, new valet, new food. And it’s doing better than ever. So, if you can get a way into the Magic Castle, you too can have that same experience.”

The Magic Castle is still an exclusive club

The Magic Castle is still an elite magic club in Los Angeles. However, people can go to the Magic Castle to learn how to become a magician. The website has a program called The Academy of Magical Arts where you can take in-person or virtual classes to become a better magician. Also, not every event is members-only, so there are times when you can see amazing magicians without knowing the secret password from Neil Patrick Harris.  

You can learn more about the Magic Castle by visiting

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