Ian D Montfort: Touching the Dead

That Tom Binns' now revered earlier creation, Ivan Brackenbury, has polarised opinion over the last few Fringes is undoubted. For the thousands who have delighted in Brackenbury's Hospital radio show, there have been hundreds for whom such an easy and repetitive format hasn't worked. This new creation, a psychic medium from Sunderland, may help to win many of the doubters over.The intimacy of the Pleasance Hut, coupled with the traditional psychic music and Montford's easygoing manner, helps the experience come to life, as it were. Through his 'powers' - both of comedy and memory - Binns uses his character in a variety of different ways to speak to dead comedians, Ernie Wise, William Shakespeare and Norris McWhirter to name but a few. He evokes Derren Brown style memory tricks to correctly demonstrate what Guiness World Record fact an audience member is focusing on (praising the spirit of McWhirter for the act), and also eerily and accurately suggests other audience members are thinking of the late Rod Hull and Ena Sharples. The show cleverly intertwines comedy and magic, with Montford's startling accuracy leaving audience members if he has brought plants in with him - only a second viewing would confirm this not to be the case - and Binns' quick-wittedness helps create the aura and intimacy that such a show craves. While the performance perhaps ultimately merely shows several variations on the same trick (a style frequently used by Ivan Brackenbury), it is highly-pleasing, highly-watchable, and another Fringe classic to add to Binns' ever-growing repertoire.

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The Blurb

From the creator of Ivan Brackenbury, Ian D. Montfort, The Sunderland Psychic who channels dead famous people. Appearing celebrities: Ernie Wise, Charles Darwin, Tony Hart, Jeremy Beadle, and William Shakespeare. D. stands for Dean.

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