8 August 2009

Phillip Escoffey - Six More Impossible Things Before Dinner

Phillip went down a storm last year and I booked these tickets based on word of mouth.  He starts the show as a thinner Martin Clunes double, who just makes sure nobody believes he is a psychic and also finds out that literally nobody in believes in psychics.  In short his hour long performance stretches your beliefs and makes you question everything, not least of all “could he be psychic?”.

He starts with a simple card test using two helpers from the audiences and having them standing behind him.  He confidently declares who has every card in a suit by looking at the men and then reading their faces if they are lying.  Topping that he repeats the stunt without either of the men looking at the cards and not looking at either man; quite impressive.  Pushing things further we explore luck and random chance by means of a bingo game increasing the entropy yet helping one lady predict incredibly random events without knowing it.  His penultimate piece is an incredible piece of tarot card reading which rapidly evolves into simple premonition and in a sealed letter reveals a wide range of details about the lady and the audience as a whole.  The downside was with the venue running late we had to skip his finale where is was going to reveal a selection of a 1 in 120 envelope which we scribbled down two connected words whilst waiting in the queue.  I really which we had been able to stay... 

Phillip's show is smooth but without gimmicks or any sleazy magician's patter.  He doesn't push you in any direction or make you think along any predetermined lines.  Think of him as a softer Derren Brown.  Abnormal, Baffling and Impossible – 8 out of 10 or four stars, but of course Phillip already knew that.