But 18-year-old Hamish Annan is using mind tricks to bring a magic show like no other.
Packed with magic, suggestion, psychology, misdirection and showmanship, it will blow your mind.
Annan is dubbed a psychological illusionist and said he uses psychology and human habits to read into people’s actions and essentially, read and control their minds.
He said his show Paradox is not like your average magic show.
“I don’t saw women in half and I don’t have huge fire cages and people swinging from ceilings and doing all of these sorts of grand things that Criss Angel or those sorts of people do. It’s more me and the other person and their thoughts. Because it’s psychology, people sort of fall into certain patterns so I can work out how people are going to respond to different things.
He also said he uses different methods to try to “frame the situation’’ and get his randomly picked guests to fall under his control.
Annan said his show was designed to make sure the audience is highly involved and everyone has a lot of fun.
He said they randomly involve 30-40 members of the audience in each show and this selection process involves chucking a ball out so that there is no chance of rigging the show.
“I’ve heard some pretty funny theories on how I do it,” he said.
The theories range from audience rigging to peeking through his thick blindfold or even having a secret peeker on stage for him.
“I try to blur the lines between ‘is that a trick or was that real?’,” he said.
He is so confident in his ability to read your mind to pick a number, he will be betting an audience member $500 that he can pick their number. A word of advice – he picked mine, three times.
“If I lose my $500 on the first night, we obviously won’t have that in the second show,” he quips.
He doesn’t believe that anyone is psychic though, just that people can read into psychological triggers.
“If someone walks up to me and says “what am I thinking of?”, there’s no way that I could possibly know. It’s more that when I frame the situation that let’s me pick up things and makes my job easier. So rather than being psychic or a mind reader, there’s some sort of psychological explanation it.”
‘So you’re giving me information without knowing you’re giving me information,” he explained.
There will be two showings of ‘Paradox’ on the 25th and 26th of September at 7.30pm at the Hamilton Boys High School Hall.
Tickets are $10 for students or $15 for adults and are available fromwww.hamiltonfringe.co.nz.
So if you feel like a mind boggling experience, head along and prepare to be tricked, puzzled and amazed. Just a quick piece of advice: if you meet him in the street, don’t take him on at a friendly game of Paper, Scissors, Rock. He will win.
– © Fairfax NZ News