18/02/2011 - 19/02/2011
21/03/2012 - 24/03/2012
New Zealand’s very own Mentalist is bringing an extended version of his show to the Fringe Festival in Wellington next February and looks set to wow audiences with his mysterious ‘mind reading’ methods.
Robert Haley, who hails from Wellington, doesn’t profess to be actually psychic but does use sophisticated observation and suggestion techniques make him appear to read minds.
“I use the term ‘mind reader’ in a very tongue-in-cheek way but the result I achieve is very similar. People do get very taken aback by how much I can deduce,’ says Robert.
In the early 1900’s the term ‘mentalist’ was very familiar, especially amongst those in high society. It was considered great theatre to see a mentalist perform.
Those performances used to be framed as ‘psychic’ demonstrations but Robert believes this is unnecessary nowadays as the modern audience will be more impressed with the level of skill that is involved.
Over the last few years, Robert has charmed audiences throughout New Zealand, Australia and London with his mentalist act.
“I have been fortunate with the help of television shows like Lie to Me and The Mentalist in refreshing this sort of theatre and bringing into the 21st century”.
What: Robert Haley – Mind Reader, part of Fringe Festival 2011
Where: The Garden Club, 13 Dixon St, Wellington.
When: 18th & 19th February 2011, doors open 7.30pm
Tickets from: www.eventfinder.co.nz or door sales on the night
Adults $18, Students & Unwaged $14.
Mentalist comes to Dunedin Fringe 2012
See what wowed audiences at the 2011 Melbourne and New Zealand Fringe Festivals:
“I left Haley’s show amazed – baffled in awe … Highly recommended” – BEAT (Melbourne)
“You’d be mentalist as anything to miss this show” – MX Newspaper (Melbourne)
“Refreshing, exciting and … maybe actually magic” – Theatreview (Wellington)
Mentalist Robert Haley is bringing his successful show MIND READER to the 2012 Dunedin Fringe Festival. Once again, he is set amaze audiences with his mysterious mind reading methods.
What: MIND READER, part of Dunedin Fringe Festival 2012
Where: The Globe Theatre,104 London St,Dunedin
When: 21-24th March 2012, 9pm (1 hour)
Tickets: DASH Tickets www.dashtickets.co.nz – 0800 327 484
Facebook: www.facebook.com/mentalist.nz Phone: (+64) 021 0678 379
A fascinating array of memory and energy tricks
Review by Kimberley Buchan 22nd Mar 2012
Robert Haley does not claim to be a mind reader apparently, in spite of the title. His techniques descend from those that the Delphic Oracle used instead. Haley’s performance moves through acts involving a deck of cards, words, memory, energy and questions from the audience with a startling degree of accuracy. It turns out that he is very helpful in the location of lost wallets.
Don’t think that by sitting in the middle of the audience you are safe from interaction, as in this demonstration the audience is the show. Wednesday night’s audience are quite receptive to this and are even diving out of their seats in a bid to be involved.
The mentalist is very eager to impress upon the audience that he is here to entertain, not humiliate and indeed you are more in danger of being smacked in the face by a paper plate than you are of having your sexual proclivities revealed.
In the beginning it seems that Haley’s performance is more to do with reading faces, and minute reactions, than minds but as the hour progresses he shows a fascinating array of memory and energy tricks.
Haley seems slightly apprehensive at times, and the transitions between the acts are not the smoothest. However this makes him seem more genuine than the polished car salesman type of presentation would have done.
Involvement from the lighting box adds an extra layer of innuendo to the show but I am unsure if this will be a feature of every performance.
The mentalist must have used his mind reading powers to discover which member of the audience was the reviewer in order to them butter up. Based on the vibes I place on a piece of cardboard he decides I am a sophisticated person who moves through social circles easily. I’ll leave it to others to decide on the accuracy of this statement.
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Refreshing, exciting … and possibly magic
Review by Fiona McNamara 19th Feb 2011
Robert Haley is not psychic, nor does he pretend to be. He can’t actually ‘read your mind’. He is a mentalist. He can figure out what you are thinking or picturing from all those little smirks, and twitches you don’t even realise you are making.
Something about the publicity material for this show made me, and many people I’ve spoken to, think that Haley is a comedian or an actor, pretending to be a mind reader; but that actually the joke is that we know he’s not; that we just suspend our disbelief in the name of comedy. That is not what it is at all. Robert Haley is not a comedian (though he will get you laughing). He is a young man who is incredibly good at skills that a lot of us would like to claim: picking up on non-verbal human responses and reactions.
Haley doesn’t hide his tricks behind flashy lights, sequins and velvet curtains. His honesty about his memorising process and reading of people’s faces (though he doesn’t let on how he pulls off some of the seemingly more complex tricks) and his friendly un-showy manner made me trust and relate to him, which, in turn, left me more in wonder than I might have been, had the show, and Haley, not been so very real and genuine.
Mind Reader is well structured, building up from basic card tricks and memory games to leaving us completely bewildered right before the interval, followed by an astounding second act: Haley’s version of a mentalist act of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries that was then called a psychic demonstration.
In this part of the show, Haley picks sealed envelopes, which contain questions the audience has written earlier, out of a bowl, and with only the writer’s initials on the outside of the envelope as a clue, he tells us who has written the question and what it is was, or something very close.
The thing that impressed me here, most of all, was that Haley was up on the stage under lights, and although they lowered these and brought the audience lights up a bit, we were still mostly in the darkness and reasonably far away… so it really does seem as though he is able to sense from the envelope in his hand, rather than the person quite far away from him and in the dark. Who knows…
Although I think I could figure out how he did most of his tricks (not that I could reproduce them) there are some moments that left me completely stumped. Maybe Robert Haley is a mind reader after all.
If you want to be impressed this Fringe, and see something refreshing, exciting and … maybe actually magic, go along.
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