Over 700 happy New Yorkers joined President Pascal Couchepin, New York City Deputy Mayor Daniel L. Doctoroff, and cyber-illusionist Marco Tempest to celebrate the first hours of the swisspeaks FESTVIAL at the American Folk Art Museum, recently. Tempest set the tone for the evening’s celebration with a specially prepared video countdown loop highlighting the festival logo, followed by a custom version of his popular “Magic Touch,” performed with a special monitor set up as a “window” into the lectern for the event. Tempest produced a magical ribbon cutting illusion for the event, in which the Swiss Peaks logo on the LCD monitor magically transformed itself into a real ribbon, spanning the stage and threaded through the monitor. A pair of ceremonial scissors was delivered and “dropped into” the monitor, where the assembled crowd was treated to the sight of the ribbon being magically cut on screen…and simultaneously cutting itself in real life! Swiss Peaks aims to present to New York an unexpected, surprising side to Switzerland, a Switzerland of Adolf Wölflis, of jazz, a Switzerland of modern design,” President Couchepin announced to the festive crowd. The event literally brought Swiss and Americans close together, as they stood cheek-to-cheek in the filled-up museum. Everyone from the cultural, political, business and academic world of the city as well as the Swiss community seemed to have followed the call from the Swiss peaks, “Don’t Miss the Swiss!” The Empire State Building was illuminated in red and white in honor of the swisspeaksFESTVIAL.