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Chris High reviews Theatre

Derren Brown – Mind Reader: An Evening Of Wonders

Liverpool Empire Theatre
Monday May 14, 2007

Image: Derren Brown promotional image 2007

There’s something quite spooky abut Derren Brown, the man made famous for encouraging people to rob security trucks, for predicting the bullet that might take his life and for placing unwitting students in to Zombie Flesh Eater video games under hypnosis. For those of you who don’t know his work, if you’ve seen the movie The Prestige, think Christian Bale and times it by a factor of fifty.

Derren Brown certainly knows how to work an audience and 2,300 devotees attending this his second sell out show in the city, were treated to a master-class in suggestion, illusion and, frankly, mind-boggling audacity guaranteed to have them asking “how the hell did he do that”, all the way home.

One of Derren Brown’s great attributes is his energy. From the moment he appears on stage – some ten minutes into the show – to the moment he runs off, the man gives it his all, zinging Frisbees into the audience to select the “lucky” few participants, or just simply taking the Mickey out of some poor sod sat in row XX, foolish enough to challenge his authenticity.

Yes, there are some slower moments, but the fact that he makes you think these are unrehearsed mishaps merely adds to the thrill of seeing the “trick” succeed in the end.
Mixing psychological befuddlement with conjuring prowess, Derren Brown is a mixture of David Copperfield and Paul McKenna rolled into one, but an amalgam with personality. Often humorous but more so terrifying, he’s a one off who deserves more credit than he is often given by his detractors and can be said to be a performance genius who will never shirk from pushing back the boundaries of his – or our – minds. A night of superb entertainment, brilliantly delivered.

15th: Stoke, Victoria Hall (01782 213800)
16th: Cardiff, St Davids Hall (02920 878444)
17th: Cardiff, St Davids Hall (02920 878444)
18th: Southend, Cliffs Pavilion (01702 351135)
19th: Plymouth, Pavilions (0845 146 1460)
20th: Portsmouth, Guildhall (02392 824355)
22nd: Ipswich, Regent (01473 433100)
23rd: Salisbury, City Hall (01722 434434)
24th: Dorking, Halls (01306 881717)
25th: Dorking, Halls (01306 881717)
31st: Glasgow, Royal Concert Hall (0141 353 8000)

June 2007
1st: Edinburgh, Festival Theatre (0131 529 6000)
2nd: Aberdeen, Music Hall (01224 641122)
3rd: Carlisle, Sands Centre (01228 625222)
4th: Bradford, St Georges Hall (01274 432000)
5th: Sheffield, City Hall (0114 278 9789)
8th: Oxford, New Theatre (0870 606 3500)
9th: Eastbourne, Congress Theatre (01323 412000)
10th: Southampton, Mayflower (02380 711811)
11th: Woking, New Victoria Theatre (01483 545900)
12th: Northampton, Derngate (01604 624811)
13th: Northampton, Derngate (01604 624811)
17th: Bristol, Hippodrome (0870 607 7500)


Click here to view details and book for the Liverpool Empire Theatre



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“Writing gets me away for a while' from this world and into one where I, alone, can make or
break the rules as I see fit.” - Chris High 2003.
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