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Adelaide Fringe 2015

Deception: More deceit


Genre: Magic and Mentalism

Venue: Gluttony - The Lotus Palace


Low Down

Matt and Vinh take the audience through a series of mind tricks that leave everyone scratching their heads going, "How did they do that"?


After an Adelaide summer’s day on the Saturday where the mercury had gone above 40 degrees, on Sunday the weather changed and became far more bearable. This seemed to give the fringe a very subdued feel in the early evening when I arrived to see Deception in Gluttony. A very relaxed, peaceful feeling.

The doors opened and the crowd filed inside. We sat down expectantly, waiting to see what was to unfold. I had a very open mind on this act, which I found an excellent way to approach the show. I had no idea what the show was about and had not read any reviews. I wanted the show to stand or fall on its’ own merits.

The show has been billed as a magic show. I think a better label is a mentalist show. Vinh and Matt are the performers, two young men from Adelaide.

The show comprised of a series of mental  tricks, beginning with the standard fare for mentalists, the card. Most people have seen the type of tricks, but it doesn’t matter. I’m still as in the dark now as to how they do the tricks as I always have been. It then progressed through several other intriguing  segments.

A highlight was a shell game like trick known as the spike trick. For the uninformed, the shell game is that street corner hustlers’ trick where there are three cups with a pea under one of them and you need to choose which cup the pea is under to win. In this variation there are four cardboard bags on a table with one of them containing a spike; the performer slamming his hand  down the on bags, with the audience waiting in nervous anticipation to see if his hand will be impaled.

Then came the finale. Vinh and Matt chose a few audience members, and told them things about themselves that you would expect only the audience member would know.

The show achieved the main aim of any show of this nature. Having the audience  leave the show asking, "how did they do that?"

The negative of the show from my perspective is that it seemed to lack the polish of some of the other shows. It is a good show, but I felt it didn’t seem to get out of second gear. As a show begins you wait in evaluation mode. "Hmmm, yeah not bad, what’s next?"

A great show really draws you in as it builds up to an great conclusion. I didn’t get that from this show. I have described the individual parts of the show, which on their own were interesting. It was the sum of the parts that I felt was lacking. Even quite ordinary content can seen extraordinary when presented by a consummate showman. This show needed that little extra pizzazz; the transitions between segments seemed a little bit awkward and some of the delivery a little bit stilted.

However, in fairness to the performers, the audience appeared to be quite engaged and entertained by the show.


Show Website