We Remember The Magic Café We Remember
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » The Purist vs. The Entertainer (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
Hill
View Profile
Inner circle
1164 Posts

Profile of Hill
Just wanted to relate a short story. Was meeting some friends in a bar last night, and overheard some people say that there was a hypnotist appearing in the venue next door. I quickly persuaded my group that it would be fun to attend.

When we arrived, it became clear that it was not a hypnosis show, it was a mind reading show. And so the excitement began to build. I was listening carefully - the audience assembled and some were saying that the guy had been trained by Derren Brown etc - clearly either marketing propoganda, or just audience chattering nonsense. Nonetheless, it set the scene well for a guy that I have never heard of. Incidentally, our friends stateside should know that you can count the number of PERFORMING mentalists/magicians in Ireland on two hands, so I was doubly surprised to see the performer was a local guy I had never heard of.

The lights went down, a hush and chorus of ooooooooooooh's and aaaaaaaaaaaaah's ensured. Then, the song 'you can read my mind' (a recent pop hit by the killers I think) began to play over the sound system. Then one of 'those' voices came over the pa - you know the type - like someone who has never used a microphone before trying to speak like a wwf announcer "ladies and gentlemen please welcome on stage one of the five foremost mind readers in the world Mr >>>>>>> >>>>>>"

Then the mind reader came out dressed in a shiny silver cabaret suit, diamante encrusted shoes, singing the words to the killers song playing in the background.
Then he moved into that new york new york song, but with his own words "start spreading the news - I'm mind reading toooo- day - and you're gonna be a part of it - my show, my show!"

I was awe struck. I have never, and I mean never witnessed anything like it. He had a raft of audience put downs (name calling, bald and fat jokes, ugly jokes), even though he as not being attacked. His 2 hour set consisted of a mix of songs, touching on hoy, name place routine (but in stead of name and place - he divined the names of former sex partners), mental epic, MOAB, reminisence (but he divined a steamy night of passion and all that happened), and other classics of the field. Every effect was followed by a song that was tenuously linked to the theme of the previous effect.

For those of you from the UK, it was like a cross between an episode of 'phoenix nights' and 'the office'. So cheesy and cringeworthy.

But, for him, it worked. It really worked. The audience (mainly 20's to 30's, with some older ones) lapped the whole thing up. For me it was amazing - but for all the wrong reasons - but for the audience, it was fun and entertianing.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not gonna run out and get myself a boom box to try and offer cabaret sing song mind reading. But it really worked for him. I was honestly aghast for most. Pieces that I perform done in a way that I never thought should or could be.

So what's my point?

Well I don't want to be a critic, since this really works for this guy. He is obviously putting food on the table. It was seriously different, and not my type of show either as a performer or an audience member.

Well I guess I wanted to get your views on it. Have you ever seen this type of act before?

How did it work a) for you and b) for the lay audience?

Let the wit commence.
IAIN
View Profile
Eternal Order
england
18816 Posts

Profile of IAIN
Never heard anything like it in my life! I'm singing that as I type...

so, he was kinda like a danny la rue/shirley ghostman type entertainer...im surprised he didn't strip halfway through by the sounds of it...

hmmm...dunno...if the audience were entertained, fair do's...but did they see what he did as "tricks" or some kind of reality bending display?

go on...name him!
I've asked to be banned
LauraCalder
View Profile
New user
79 Posts

Profile of LauraCalder
Was it meant to be ironic?
Hill
View Profile
Inner circle
1164 Posts

Profile of Hill
I can say with absolute certainty, that there was no intended irony. I looked for it, I looked very closely. But as I say, it was this guy's style, and it really worked for him.
coupcoupdaddy
View Profile
Inner circle
2466 Posts

Profile of coupcoupdaddy
Was an audience volunteer a tall gentleman wearing a camouflage dashiki?
foreign correspondent, z and lt



inner being worker
LauraCalder
View Profile
New user
79 Posts

Profile of LauraCalder
Quote:
On 2007-08-26 11:39, write2david wrote:
I can say with absolute certainty, that there was no intended irony. I looked for it, I looked very closely. But as I say, it was this guy's style, and it really worked for him.


I'll take your word for it, but from your description he sounds like Neil Hamburger or Andy Kaufman's alter-ego - you know, one of those parodies of nightclub comics.

How old was he?
Hill
View Profile
Inner circle
1164 Posts

Profile of Hill
In his thirties.
eSamuels
View Profile
Inner circle
3097 Posts

Profile of eSamuels
While I can understand your state of perplexity, and would probably have had the same reaction....if the seats were full and the audience had a good time, this is a performer who has found both a 'unique' approach, and clearly, a constituency for his shtick. Yes, the 'brow' level may have been brought down, but it's inevitable, isn't it? I would be curious to know if the performer has another performing persona that he's either tried and failed with, or perhaps, even has two approaches for two kinds of audiences - kind of a Mentalist Jekyl & Hyde!

For different reasons, I'm reminded of the "different camera angle" taken by the R-Rated 'disappearing silk' stripping act form the Montreal Just For Laughs Comedy Festival (Not sure who the (female) performer is, someone sent me a video file of it a few moths ago) Certainly not your grandpa's silk in TT routine!
Jerome Finley
View Profile
V.I.P.
SLC
3419 Posts

Profile of Jerome Finley
Hmmmm,

First off, The Killers song is a great one. I use it in my own work.

Second, if what this guy is doing works, IT WORKS! It might not be to our personal tastes, but then again, it was not our show -

Third, I recently saw Gerry McCambridge do his thing in Vegas. I found a lot of it quite risque (swearing, and "adult only" remarks and comments, jokes directed at audience members, etc.) but it works for Gerry and the audience seemed to enjoy themselves.

Audience bashing has not ever had a place in my performances.

What else can I say?

-J.
"Join my update list here!" http://eepurl.com/uE3Jf
Nash
View Profile
Inner circle
Hong Kong ~ USA
1090 Posts

Profile of Nash
Isn't Mentalism heavy on presentation after all?
Well... instead of watching another mentalist doing the exact same presentation/style, I think this is refreshing.
Who said a Mentalist can't sing?
I actually kinda wanna see his show now that you mention it.

hhhhhhhhheeeeeeeemmmmmmmmmm
Don't give up, don't EVER give up.

Corporate event magician
Glossolalia
View Profile
New user
61 Posts

Profile of Glossolalia
Don't pull any punches, what was this guy's name?
Hill
View Profile
Inner circle
1164 Posts

Profile of Hill
I hope my post hasn't been misinterpreted, It was meant to be positive, basically saying that although it was not my style at all, it really worked for him and for that I applaud him. It would not be right for me to mention the gentleman's name, but perhaps he is a member here.
Glossolalia
View Profile
New user
61 Posts

Profile of Glossolalia
No it wasn't misinterpreted.

Not sure why it wouldn't be right, he can obviously pull a crowd, get people to pay to see him, and entertain.

Surely that is to be applauded and his name should be put out there, especially when so many are so full of their arrogance (I won't say ego because all performers need a large ego) and perform only to their pet goldfish.
phillsmiff
View Profile
Inner circle
UK
1703 Posts

Profile of phillsmiff
I agree with Glossolalia: if I were this performer, reading this, I doubt I would be offended! I'm sure he is totally aware of the impact his show has, and would chuckle at seeing a fellow performer says "I didn't like it... but the whole of the rest of the audience ate it up!"

JMO of course!

Phill
Check out the incredible Neural Miracle playing cards on Kickstarter:
-+: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/phillsmith/incredible-magic-with-the-neural-miracle-playing-cards :+-
Jon_Thompson
View Profile
Inner circle
Darkest Cheshire
2404 Posts

Profile of Jon_Thompson
If it's not ironic then it could be that he's a singer and likes to do some patter between songs and the mentalism just sort of developed into part of the act. If it works for an audience, BEG to manage him! Smile
Dario
View Profile
Veteran user
332 Posts

Profile of Dario
He has the correct material for the correct place. I suppose in a formal situation he will do different. The problem is get stuck with this comedy club style only (at least if you want to work in other places...)

Is the same with comedy and magic, you can do it classy, elegant, white or just the opposite. It's a question of taste and performer personality.

At least he has prove that comedy mentalism works...
rinpoche
View Profile
New user
Garden of Earthly Delights
56 Posts

Profile of rinpoche
I once went out to a local (Boston) comedy club on amateur night. A guy came out dressed as a vampire and did a very funny act. He was clearly a professional. THis was in the early 90s when many big time comedians were coming out of Boston, Dennis Leary, Stephen Wright, Kevin Meany, (yes even) Jay Leno.

I have never seen the vampire act since. My guess is that he was pro who was trying material out. The good thing was that he stayed in cheesy character the whole time (bad vampire puns included) and killed.

If it seemed like ther person was in disguise and an unknown - could be a similar situation. If it was entertaining - great!
LauraCalder
View Profile
New user
79 Posts

Profile of LauraCalder
Write2david, did you feel, even though there was comedy in his act, that the mentalism was taken seriously and presented with respect?

Personally, I love variety acts - jokes and music work very well together, and if this guy managed to make the mentalism believable and real alongside all that then more credit to him!

I remember seeing Jerry Sadowitz at the Soho Theatre a while ago. He basically did a sort of cross-breed of ranting Glasweigan abuse and card magic. It was pretty good. You could tell that he loved the cards.
Hill
View Profile
Inner circle
1164 Posts

Profile of Hill
To be honest, and this is one of the reasons I don't want to name the performer - I think the effect of some of the mentalism was heavily diluted. For instance, with touching on hoy, instead of the traditional 'key' piece of information, he asked the specs to think of a sexual position, a former partner, and an sexual disease, and the key piece of info was m********* - a very common 'position'. Everyone did sit down when prompted, but the effect of this was very absent with the audience. humour was played so heavily, and the subject matter so distracting that the strength of it was missed by the audience.

AS for the rest of the effects, the impact of each was evident, but perhaps less than I would have expected from effects that I use to great effect regularly.

It was wonderfully cheesy, but the resounding feeling after the show by the restof the audience was that they had been entertained, but not amazed.

Jerry Sadowitz is a master, I love his work.
Experimentalist
View Profile
Veteran user
355 Posts

Profile of Experimentalist
I suspect that this was Andy Kauffman in disguise. (Not really)
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » The Purist vs. The Entertainer (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.21 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL