Men•tal•ism: the theory that physical and psychological phenomena are ultimately explicable only in terms of a creative and interpretative mind.
“When it comes to mentalism, one of the biggest misconceptions is how real people think it is. There are three theories as to what mentalism is. You could think it is trickery, you could think it is psychology, or you could think it is real physic ability, however it is mostly trickery,” said Spidey.
On Feb 15, NAITSA brought in world renowned mentalist and hypnotist Spidey to perform and amaze students at the Nest. He has been featured on America’s Got Talent, Entertainment Tonight Discovery Channel and the list goes on.
Born and raised in Montreal, he originally went to school to get a social psychology degree. “More than the material I do on stage it has helped me understand people, how we connect, understand how the mind works, so it’s not so much applied to my work, as to why some of the things I do work,” said Spidey when asked how it influenced his current career.
Having done magic growing up, it wasn’t what he thought his career would be, however, he started doing it professionally 12 years ago and has been performing in diverse venues since.
Amanda Thorn from the Med Lab Tech program headed to the Nest specifically to watch Spidey perform. “His ability to know people’s names and his almost physic ability,” said Amanda when asked what amazed her the most. “Oh, and the phantom chalk too, holy fuck!”
Throughout the hour long program the audience experienced chalk moving without anyone touching it to draw wine glasses, in a game of what seemed like ghost pictionary, with Spidey guessing random people’s names and birth dates while making balloon animals. Finally a twisted game of avoid stabbing a nail through your hand while crushing paper bags capped off the evening.
“Adding the mentalism aspect to the show was really cool. It was less I am making someone float, it’s being able to get in someone’s head, which seems harder to rig that, showing off his talent and the amount he has practised,” said Thorn.
However, Spidey admits that a part of putting on a great show is lying, something he doesn’t like to do in his everyday life.
“In my real life you won’t catch me lying. In fact I feel like I am lying if I omit information and don’t give full truths in my real life. On stage I feel like it is understood that I am allowed to lie to you. You came to the show to be lied to, so as long as the paradigm is there people understand that, I feel comfortable lying because I have to lie. If I didn’t lie the show would be shit, because it would lack entertainment, so I have your permission to lie and therefore I lie, but the struggle is so real.”
In the future he hopes to get more television opportunities to share the entertainment of mentalism .
Catch more events like this at the Nest put on by NAITSA on Thursdays.
– Nicole Murphy