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I Can Make You A Mentalist
Published on Monday, 29 April 2013

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The Warren (venue website)
24-25 May, 7:30pm-8:30pm

 Warning: Contains strong language.
 World Premiere.
 Warning: Contains flashing lights.
 Suitable for age 16+ only.

Over the last couple of years, mind-reader Doug Segal has certainly planted himself in the Fringe’s collective consciousness, winning a slew of five-star reviews and thoroughly bamboozling sell-out audiences both here and up in Edinburgh. His style of mental magic invites comparison to Derren Brown, but his personality couldn’t be more different: expect chipper patter, friendly joshing, and a warming dose of happy-go-lucky charm. And also, for this brand-new show, expect something quite remarkable. Because if all goes to plan, Segal will spend the whole hour on stage without actually doing any mind-reading at all.

Instead, mentalist duties will be delegated to an audience member, chosen at random by a cheat-proof lottery at the start of every show.  Assisted by Segal’s high-tech “Brainmaster 3000”, this untrained bystander will perform seven minor miracles – including mind-reading, telepathy, and implanting a suggestion in a stranger’s brain.  They’ll achieve all this, Segal claims, without any assistance from him, simply by following instructions put together from his years in the advertising trade.
It’s an intriguing new twist on Segal’s popular act, and there’s another innovation too – a series of videoed sketches, which connect with the live act on stage.  The comedy vignettes come from a strong stable, with members of lauded sketch groups Casual Violence and the Beta Males playing a part in their production.  All in all then, this sounds a risky, exciting show, which will call on every ounce of Segal’s suavity and charm.  But luckily – in an act that’s filled with chicanery – the infectious warmth of his personality is one thing that’s undoubtedly real.

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