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GCT Extra

The Sixth Sense

Behind the scenes with award-winning mentalist and illusionist, Wayne Hoffman

By: Yohana de la Torre, Chief Editor

Mentalist and Illusionist, Wayne Hoffman

Mentalist and Illusionist, Wayne Hoffman

Award-winning mentalist and illusionist, Wayne Hoffman will bring his supernatural show to Seminole Casino Immokalee on January 22.

Originally from Reading, Pennsylvania, Hoffman says his career started by visiting the Mingus Magic Shop as a child.  His passion for the mysterious was sparked at a young age and led him to study the art of magic.  Later, through extensive self studies in sociology, psychology, and human behavior, Hoffman was able to develop the foundation of his skills today. 

Recognized as one of the top mentalists in the world, Hoffman tours with his stage show “Mind Candy” and motivational speech “The Power and Potential of The Human Mind.”  He is also the author of the best-selling book Mind Candy.

“Mind Candy” is a high-energy, interactive presentation that involves a combination of magic and psychology.  Hoffman does the impossible as he moves objects with his mind, reveals the thoughts of his audience members and even travels through time.

He has been featured on NBC’s hit show Phenomenon, Glenn Beck, The Howard Stern Show, the Ellen DeGeneres Show, Beverly Hills Pawn, National Geographic’s The Numbers Game, CNNMoney, TLC, Animal Planet, TV Asahi, Fuji Television, TBS in Japan, Yahoo! Finance and more.

GCT chatted with Hoffman about his beginnings as a mentalist, his creative process, and the things that affect reality.  Here’s what he had to say:  

YD: How did you get into professional illusionist work?

WH: “It started as a hobby and eventually people offered to pay me for it.  When I realized I could get paid to do something that I love, it turned into my career.”

YD: Can you explain what mentalism is?

WH: “Mentalism is using psychology for entertainment.  I use the five senses I already have to create the illusion of a sixth sense.  Mentalism is the majority of what I do.  During my show, you will see me read people’s thoughts, predict the future, move objects with my mind, and other seemingly psychic stunts.”

YD: Your work encompasses a little magic, mind reading and psychic stunts.  How do you prepare?  

WH: “Magic is a physical skill that I’ve developed over 23 years of practice.  I now get what I like to call “working practice.”  I tour eight months out of the year, so every time I hit the stage I’m refreshing my skills.  If I want to create something new, I usually ask people what they think would be cool to see.  The answers I get are typically outrageous impossibilities that actually end up in my show.

“The mentalism is a little different in the fact that I can’t practice mentalism alone.  It’s boring to read my own mind, so I need a person in front of me to participate.  Every time I perform a show I’m learning something new.  If I have a new idea, I just put it in the show and try it.”

YD: Can you share with us a little about your mentor/mentors, and what you’ve learned from them?

WH: “A lot of people have performed mentalism and magic before me and I learned a lot from them.  A gentleman by the name of Wayne Shifflett was the first person to teach me magic.  He is the owner of the Mingus Magic Shop where I got my start.  After him, I learned from a myriad of performers.  I learned public speaking skills, physical sleight of hand, psychological techniques, the business side of being a performer, etc.”

YD: Your show often breaks the laws of reality.  Do you feel reality is different for everyone?

WH: “My show attacks the basic laws of physics and science as we all know it.  However, my audience is always divided in their belief system.  Some of my audience members believe in psychic powers and the “world of the unknown,” while others are skeptics who take a critical thinking approach.  The best part about my show is that it causes controversy and gets people talking.  I like stretching people’s imaginations and making them question what is possible.”

YD: Do you still get butterflies before going on stage?  What about when you get it wrong?

WH: “After so many years of performing, I don’t get nervous anymore, but I still get excited before every show.  The proverbial “butterflies” still exist. I think that if I ever stop getting excited that would be the moment I should retire or create a completely new show.  Due to the fact that every show is different, I always have to stay on my toes.  You never know what audience members will think.

“I can never be 100% sure when I try to figure out what someone is thinking.  If I am ever wrong, which will happen occasionally, I use it as a learning experience and analyze that particular moment.  It keeps things exciting for sure.”

YD: Tell us a little about what people can expect from your show.

WH: “Many people walk into my show expecting something completely different than what they see and leave pleasantly surprised.  During my show you will laugh, be scared, be shocked, question what is possible, and eventually be inspired.  The show is highly interactive and relies on audience participation.  In simple terms, you will see someone reading people’s minds and presenting what seems to be true psychic powers.”

- Mind Candy will hit the Seminole Casino Immokalee stage on January 22 at 8 pm.  Tickets cost $20 and may be purchased at the casino or charge by phone at 800-218-0007.  For more information, visit www.seminoleimmokaleecasino.com! 

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Road Trip!

RV show hits Lee Civic Center

The Fort Myers Recreation Vehicle Show motors into the new year at the Lee Civic Center on January 22 – 25.

The Fort Myers Recreation Vehicle Show motors into the new year at the Lee Civic Center on January 22 – 25.

Promising outdoor traveling adventure and family fun, the Fort Myers Recreation Vehicle Show motors into the new year at the Lee Civic Center this January 22 – 25.

This year’s RV extravaganza provides attendees the opportunity to see the latest and best camping products available to RVers and lovers of the great outdoors offered by 14 RV dealers, says Chris Morse, president of Florida RV Trade Association-Region One.

“Attendees can view hundreds of recreation vehicles of all different types, sizes and prices.  It also features about 100 outdoor and camping supply vendors,” he says. “This event focuses on the fun, flexibility and affordability RVing provides.” 

Besides RVs, the show allows attendees the chance to browse outdoor and camping vendors displaying equipment and accessories to help outfit RVers or provide information on camping throughout the nation.  Items include new towing systems, RV insurance, specialized camping equipment and high-tech makeovers for older RVs. 

“For the majority of RV buyers, the interest on their purchase is tax deductible since it qualifies as a second home,” Chris continues.  “Now is the time to buy since RV prices have never been lower, making the RV lifestyle surprisingly affordable.” 

- The 30th Annual Fort Myers RV Show will take place at the Lee Civic Center from 10 am – 5 pm on January 22 – 25.  Admission is $8 with children under 16 free.  Parking is free courtesy of the RV Trade Association.  For more information, visit www.events.frvta.org