There are multiple theories about how mentalists achieve their results. The performers might be particularly gifted at guessing. More often, it involves cheating of some sort – hidden microphones, earpieces, plants in the audience. The Amazing Kreskin once famously offered a million dollars to anyone who could prove he was cheating. Nobody ever collected.
The recent success of the Clairvoyants on “America’s Got Talent” has brought the theorists to the forefront again. This time, the favorite solution is something never dreamed of in the Kreskin age – a “thumper” – a device hidden in a shoe that sends signals out in Morse code when tapped, the vibrations felt by the partner. Or then again, there could be that old standby, an earphone hidden in a blindfold.
But as with magic illusions, do most in the audience even care how it is done if it’s entertaining?
That’s not to say the Clairvoyants are bogus. Amélie van Tass and Thommy Ten have built quite an act since meeting in Austria in 2011. They performed in editions of the recurrent Broadway series “The Illusionists,” including one that ended in January at the Palace Theater. And they came to national attention in “America’s Got Talent,” coming in second to Grace VanderWaal.
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Also on tap is Conjunto Primavera on Friday, March 31, out of Ojinaga, Chihuahua, Mexico, since the 1990s, with hits like “Necesito Decirte” and the Latin Grammy Norteno winner “Amor Amor.” (9 p.m.; $39-$65)
Sunday, April 2, finds the Flamenco Kings featuring Los Vivancos. The dynamics of the seven brothers, and certainly of their looks, are based in dance, tradition and martial arts. Think of Michael Flatley’s “Feet of Flames” but from Barcelona (4 p.m.; free)
Promises of upgrades are being kept in downtown Reno where all three major casinos (Eldorado, Silver Legacy, Circus Circus) are under the same ownership. Among them: a new Sips Coffee & Tea at Circus, a Hidden Pizza in the Eldorado, and a food court at Circus featuring Habit Burger Grill, Panda Express and Piezzetta.