|Photo by Gary Moyes|
Famous and infamous now for his hugely popular television shows, from Mind Control to the notorious Russian Roulette, Seance and the more recent The Experiments, the Derren Brown live mess-with-your-mind experience proved a tantalising prospect, and Nottingham's Theatre Royal provided the perfect atmospheric stage for his Svengali Tour's Frankenstein's-monster/Victoriana freak-show/sideshow set complete with clockwork whirings and ominous background music.
Enigmatic and engaging, Derren Brown is magician, mind-acrobat and astonishingly talented artist to boot. He is the modern/old-fashioned showman extraordinaire, geekily-handsome and mesmeric, small and slight but with magnificent stage presence and to witness the phenomenal hold he has on people live on stage and all around you is an exceptional theatrical experience, with full-on audience participation (easy to opt out of, phew) engaging the entire theatre, right up to the balcony.
Even if you're not particularly a fan, or not especially into magic, you can't help but be drawn in to his giddying powers of fast-talking persuasion and manipulation, his genuinely adroit and intelligent talent and his ability to transform illusion and suggestion into a thrilling and fascinating spectacle, with both tremendous ease and great flourish and aplomb.
Confidentially, we're bursting to regale you with all the impossible tricks and treats but along with the whole Derren Brown tour audience we've taken a vow of, well, confidentiality. Charisimatic, with energy, wit and panache, it's entertainment like they don't make any more and it'll blow your mind and socks off. In Nottingham for the whole week, the show is as good as sold out, lucky you if you have a ticket, you're in for one helluva ride.
Derren Brown Svengali is at Nottingham Theatre Royal until May 26, full details of available tickets and prices can be found here