Reviewer: Matt Forrest
If Sherlock Holmes were alive today what would he look like? I’m sure the first thing that comes into most people’s head would be the image of Benedict Cumberbatch. However if you were thinking a well suited spike-haired Scotsman, you would be nearer the truth.
Colin Cloud makes no bones of his love for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous creation: he wears it like a badge of pride, this, mixed with his qualification as a forensic scientist, has given Cloud the apparent ability to read minds and know things he couldn’t possibly know in advance. This is the set-up for a intriguing and fascinating show: Colin Cloud: Forensic Mind Reader.
As you enter the theatre, Cloud is found sat on a stool, blinded-folded, motionless, at the back of him a drape, conjuring images of Holmes’s study: the show hadn’t even started but the fun had begun. With AC/DC’s Back In Black, blasting from the speakers, Cloud opened the show, attempting to gage the type of audience he has – are they believers or sceptics? Those expecting a serious evening have chosen the wrong show, as instantly Cloud’s charming demeanour and humorous opening perfectly sets the tone for the fun filled evening that is about to follow. Of course a show of this nature requires audience participation and will only be as good as those in attendance. There is a good mix of those willing to participate and those who are nervous. Cloud’s humour and affable approach to those lucky/unlucky to be selected instantly put them at ease, reassuring them that they would not be the ‘butt’ of any jokes.
It would be unfair of me to divulge some of the shows set pieces and would spoil the show for anyone reading this. However the way in which Cloud manages to delve into the mind of the crowd is simply incredible, regularly drawing huge cheers and gasps of amazement from the audience. If there were any sceptics at the start of the show about Cloud’s unique talent then by the end they’ll be no doubt at all. This is simply a fascinating, mind blowing show. However the main appeal of Cloud is not his ability, more that he is a charismatic and likeable entertainer. He brings the famed showmen of the Victorian era kicking and screaming into the 21st century. Cloud manages to draw you in, so you feel part of the show.
With a development deal signed with NBC Universal, Cloud’s star is in the ascendency and I would advise catching him in a town near you before it’s too late… just be prepared to be blown away!
Reviewed on 23 October 2015