Highly Recommended ***** The Apollo Theater Chicago has a new tenant. It is Marc Salem, the world’s foremost mentalist and purveyor of mind games. This is not a play, but is an evening of entertainment that you will want to partake of, and possibly participate in. It is called “Theater Art”, and this man, comes before an audience and with his mind, gets into our heads. Not knowing what to expect, we assumed that it would be an evening of typical “mind-reading”(as they refer to it on the circuit), but Mr. Salem is far from typical, in any way , shape or form.
Mr. Salem has the ability to work with the audience members and get into their heads. He began the show by taking a sheet of paper out of a small note pad and tossing it into the audience. The person who picked up that paper became his first “target” or perhaps assistant would be a better word to use. Salem referred to this portion as the “warm-up” and was able to play off the person and those to follow. He worked with late-comers, making them a part of the show from their entrance into the venue, so please arrive on time, unless it is your intention to be part of the show.
As the show progresses, he brought “volunteers” onstage to draw pictures, and as he worked with each, proved that he could determine which “volunteer” drew which picture. He had audience members come up and select envelopes. One of these contained a $100 bill. The other three, a coupon for a copy of his book. They were all given the option to exchange one envelope for another and our friend Susan, who was one of the participants, changed hers. What a surprise to find that she gave up the cash for the book. Oh, well, we will all get a chance to read this special book and will recall our night at The Apollo.
Volunteers were used to do the big finale, where he is blindfolded and with taped eyes, makes statements about items that were brought up to the stage from audience members. He also had people write something on a card, which he never laid eyes on, yet was able to talk about and call out their names and recent trips or adventures in their lives. Amazing! That has to be the best way to describe this cabaret type show that has no story, but is amazing theater for young and old. From the very start he tells us that his true talent is being able to observe and his mind is always working. There are no PLANTS. We saw for ourselves as one of our relatives was also in the audience and she filled out a card- he got it right! Our world has changed in many ways, with our youth no longer needing to use their minds as we did in our youth. Today, everybody has an I -something so why imagine when you can point and click?
The answer is simple! Life is better when you can use your mind and visualize what is not in front of you, isn’t it? The beauty of a show like this, is that each performance is made up of different components and different performers ( Salem likes to use his audience members that want to participate as much as he can) so every show is unique and new. This makes the show special for each audience and in the long run, for Salem, himself. One cannot be bored when one does not know what will happen next, right? But as far as I could see, it appears that Marc Salem DOES KNOW what will happen next. No surprises for him, yet scads of surprises, laughs and entertainment for each and every member of the audience.
“Marc Salem’s Mind Over Chicago” is scheduled to run through March 27th ( the last show that was scheduled for an 8 week run, “Million Dollar Quartet” lasted over 5 years. Can lighting strike again at the newly remodeled Apollo Theater Chicago located at 2540 N. Lincoln Avenue. The performance schedule is as follows:
Saturday, February 20th at 5 and 8 p.m.
Sunday, February 28th 3:30 and 7 p.m.,
Monday, February 29th 7:30 p.m.
Every Saturday at 5 and 8 p.m.
Every Sunday 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Hopefully, more will be announced and added later. Meanwhile, if you can , I suggest you re-arrange your schedule as this is an experience you will not want to miss.
Tickets are $50 and can be purchased by calling the box office at 773-935-6100 or visit www.apollochicago.com
You can also go to www.ticketmaster.com.
Parking in the area is tight, but the Apollo does have a lot next to the building for $15. Meters are on the street. The show is 90 minutes of pure, mind-blowing magic. No intermission!
To see what others are saying, visit www.theatreinchicago.com, go to Review Round-up and click at “Marc Salem’s Mind Over Chicago”.