As reported in mid-August, Off-Broadway's most famous mental case — or at least its most controlled and entertaining one — will make a return to New York Nov. 21-Jan. 13, 2002 at the Duke on 42nd Street. Marc Salem, whose one-man show, MindGames, closed in May 1998 after a six month run at Off Broadway's Westside Theatre, now offers Mind Games, Too.
MindGames is neither a traditional magic show nor a hypnotism act, yet seems to have elements of both. A spokesperson for the original show termed it "a cross between Penn & Teller and Ricky Jay." Another former spokesperson put it this way: "Salem is the world's foremost mentalist. He plays lots of psychological games with the audience and plays with the world of the sixth sense. It's very magical and psychological."
Current spokesperson Lauren Daniluk promises that Mind Games, Too, which officially opens Dec. 3, will have "new material and classic favorites."
Salem's last New York stint was a summer run at Feinstein's at the Regency in 2000. That show was called Marc Salem's Mind Games and All That Jazz and featured the jazz trio, The Vibrations.
Salem, a former New York University professor, has degrees from NYU and the University of Pennsylvania. He was a director of research at Sesame Street for ten years. His "mind games" involve audience participation and the revelation of hidden answers that come to Salem — but who knows how? Salem's performance features the mentalist trying to divine personal information and the nature of randomly selected items from the audience.
For tickets ($45) and information on Mind Games, Too at the Duke on 42nd Street, 229 West 42nd St., call (212) 239-6200.