Friday , 29 January 2016
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Surprising the skeptical with the supernatural

Mentalist Ehud Segev, an Israeli spiritualist and psychic entertainer, can bend a spoon by staring at it, guess which pop song is in your head, and predict which of 52 cards is in your hand… But in his new off-Broadway show “Anomal”, Segev also shares the high and low points of his life in a series of monologues. We spoke with “The Mentalizer” about the show’s effects, challenges and messages.

Q: Why is “Anomal” the title?
A: It’s a European word that means a lot of different things, mainly about being abnormal or out of the ordinary.

Q: What makes you different?
A: I combine my magic effects, psychology and a lot of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming). I’m connecting to myself and through myself I can connect to the people in front of me. I’m getting it right cause I do it on a daily basis and I feel people everyday.

Q: But do the monologues detract from your tricks?
A: Beautiful question! It’s a very original concept of combining showmanship with a play. That’s something many people were afraid to do before. And I said, “No, I want to have everything together. I want to start with an ending and end with a beginning. So everything’s messy.”

Q: When did you become “The Mentalizer”?
A: I grew up in Safed, a very spiritual city in Israel. That’s where I got all these connections. Very soon I realized it doesn’t matter if it’s Kabbalah or Buddhism. It all has to do with being connected to yourself. That’s when I started my own philosophy.

Q: What philosophy is that?
A: Connecting people. The more I reach out to people, the more I’ll bring people closer to my message. I just recently signed a contract to write a book about it. I hope to call it “The Mentalizer Way.”

Q: How have the mentalist show’s reviews been?
A: I’ve been getting a lot of great reactions. Someone else wrote a review and I felt bad for him cause he couldn’t relate to the artistic points. He was killing it in an aggresive way.

Q: What led you to perform it off-Broadway?
A: It’s a step to bring my musical “Legend” to Broadway. I wrote the book, music and lyrics, and it has all my messages in it.

Q: How will that differ from your one-man show?
A: It’s a full production with singers and dancers. It’s the story of a boy who goes on a journey to find happiness, but then realizes it’s not something outside, and happiness lies in you.

Through Jan. 29. American Theater of Actors. 314 West 54th Street. 212-352-3101. $45-$55. Mon-Fri 8pm, Sat 2pm, Sun 2 & 7pm.

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