The Time I Went to a Derren Brown Show

Derren Brown (1)

Earlier this month I went to see Derren Brown’s newest stage show, Miracle.

I watched it during its run at The Grand in Wolverhampton (which is a lovely, old fashioned theatre). Seeing Derren Brown perform live is a totally brilliant experience. If you’re looking for a chance to be amazed and want to give your mind a few puzzles to chew over, don’t miss this show.

For those who don’t know who Derren Brown is, he’s a British mentalist, illusionist and artist (and I’m sure he is also a great many other things as well).  He has created many TV programmes on a range of topics (most of which through Channel 4), such as whether you can convince someone to commit murder and an experiment to find out how someone would behave in a zombie apocalypse situation. He has also written books and performed in many a stage show. He’s a really interesting and clever man.

My personal experience with Derren Brown, leading up to watching Miracle, was solely through TV shows and following his Twitter feed. I’ve read a few newspaper articles about him as well. Before last week I associated Derren Brown with the passing enjoyment I experienced while watching his shows, but now I have a much deeper respect and admiration for his work. I can officially say he is one of my favourite performers of all time.

Whilst Miracle is full of an array of clever manipulations, tricks and seemingly impossible feats, it nevertheless feels very honest and human. When you go to a Derren Brown show you’re not just ‘attending a show’, or ‘watching a show’. You’re part of a show. Derren is a hugely charismatic performer who fully includes and interacts with his audience.

In Miracle, as with many of his TV programmes, Derren delivers deep messages in really thought provoking and impactful ways. I went to his live show to be shocked and amazed and I was far from disappointed. In fact, I left with more than I bargained for. Whilst walking back to the train station after the show ended, I felt unexpectedly positive about myself and utterly revitalised.

I have to admit I was a bit frightened beforehand in case I got picked out of the audience. In hindsight I wish I had gone with the flow more and not resisted the things the show was trying to work on me. Nevertheless my personal resistance to being affected by the show was quickly broken down by the onslaught of Derren’s kinetic energy, witty one liners and effortless control of the show.  I felt bewitched.

If you go to see Derren Brown live and want the full experience it’s probably best to go in with the mind set of being open to joining in and letting him lead you through his carefully plotted narrative. But even if you go in fighting it in anyway, I think it’s extremely unlikely you’ll leave with the same attitude.

Every facet of Miracle’s production was wonderful. The stage design was great. The lighting and projections,too, were masterfully done and added significantly to the whole experience of watching this smooth, smart show.

I’m so glad I got to see Derren Brown perform live and experience his talents first hand.

I haven’t really touched on the content of the show at all, and that’s because I a) promised not to (everyone who attends makes this promise)and b) don’t want to. Part of the magic of attending this show is going into it blind and letting it hit you without any preconceived notion of what’s going to happen and how things are going to go. If you want to know what happens, well, you’ll have to find out for yourself.

Ren x

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