Edinburgh Fringe 2017
Caspar Thomas has the standards down to a T. We get the 5 coins, the rings and some mentalism as a nod to current trends. The jokes are there to keep momentum going and much though I think I heard them many moons ago, Thomas has the ability to freshen them up a tad. If you are looking for death defying stunts then Thomas is not your guy but if you want to be thoroughly entertained by a guy who knows what he is doing, then he’s your man.
Thomas arrives onstage to begin his act with the type of music and introduction that suggests yesteryear. The act continues with that vein though it has to be said that the card trick was impressive, the bit with the book which came from the audience got the gasps and whilst the rings are hardly radical, they were greeted with applause and appreciation throughout a very healthy crowd.
You cannot argue sometimes with the punters and they loved Caspar Thomas. There was a lot to love and sometimes we get lost in the wish to create even more spectacle rather than give credit to those who can do close up magic to this level. With a quote for Jerry Sadowitz on his publicity it gives you a clue as to just how good Thomas is.
Perhaps the most impressive though was not the closing piece but the one before it. Managing to copy a signature whilst blindfolded kept us on our toes and there was very real jeopardy over whether or not he could misdirect us properly to achieve the outcome he was after. Again, the gasps were enough to tell us that actually, yes he could.
The image of magic and mentalism is now all over the likes of Britain’s Got Talent and other massively popular TV shows so calling your show more magic and mentalism is likely to prove popular. It did – the place was heaving. Thomas claims he has no stooges involved and is obviously not clairvoyant so the abilities on display have to be taken as very genuine. He gets a few things wrong but, as you might expect, this only serves to trust him even more.
Caspar Thomas may be slightly more Paul Daniels than Derren Brown but we suffered the less for that. It is a good way of spending some time catching one of the Free Fringe shows and if you are going, be prepared to chuck whatever you can in the bucket as this type of close up magic needs to thrive if the artform is to continue to keep us on the edge of our seats.