Jan 10, 2009
When Uri Geller bent spoons with his ‘mental power’, people were stunned and couldn’t believe their eyes. Of course, there were sceptics who disagreed with the Geller effect and the famous mystifier was embroiled in many controversies (as most famous people are).
Bangalore’s own Uri Geller, Nakul Shenoy doesn’t claim to bend cutlery or to have supernatural powers. But he is definitely inspired by Uri. This is evident when you glance at his visiting card – it carries a picture of a bent spoon!
You could probably call him a mind bender, even though he likes to call himself a psychic entertainer, and don’t be surprised…he claims to read the minds of his audience!
“At an event where many IT bigwigs had gathered and I had just finished a performance, one of the distinguished gentlemen came up to me and said that he would refer me to the Rationalist Society of India, as I was trying to do paranormal stuff,” says Nakul with a laugh. He adds, “I told him politely that I had friends in the society myself and that I don’t claim to have powers beyond the natural.”
FASCINATED BY MAGIC
What started as a fascination for all things magical, has now turned into a passion..the paranormal, telepathy, hypnosis and most of all, mind reading. Bangalore-based Nakul is now a corporate entertainer and has been holding sessions for various companies for the last six years. Most of these are sessions in mind reading and he has entertained audiences in various parts of the world. His clients include big names like Apple, Microsoft, Wipro, GE, HSBC Bank among others. “Since my childhood days, I have been a huge fan of Mandrake the magician. I used to read Mandrake comics and would picture myself doing fantastic things with just twisting my fingers. Once, when I was five years old, my parents took me for a magician’s performance. I think it was P C Sorcar Junior and I got totally hooked,” says Nakul.
After that, it was all about magic for Nakul. He learnt various tricks and started performing for family and friends. In 1993, at the age of 15, Nakul gave his first public performance in magic. “By the time I was in college, I had my own troupe and we conducted many shows. But over the years, I had done every trick in the book and started getting disillusioned. I would think how good it would be to perform without having to use all that equipment and props and just do magic with my hands like Mandrake.”
THE ‘REAL MAGIC’
That is when Nakul turned to psychic entertainment. “I read a lot of books on mind reading, the paranormal and psychic abilities and trained my mind. I also received professional training in hypnosis from experts in the field. Slowly, I began to shift to what I term as ‘real magic’ and in time moved over completely to the genre of psychic entertainment presenting phenomena like mind reading, thought transference, and telepathy. After that, there hasn’t been any looking back.
Nakul has a post-graduate degree in communication from the Manipal Institute of Communication and is currently pursuing his doctoral degree in the same field. Appropriately, his master’s research paper was on the potential of magic for social communication!
Now the mentalist is busy preparing for his first public performance – “Beyond Magic, a psychic entertainment show” on Jan 19 at the Chowdaiah Memorial Hall. “All my shows till now have been for corporate events and it was not to the general public. This will be the first of its kind show in the country, dedicated entirely to psychic phenomenon,” says Nakul.
GOING BEYOND MAGIC
So what would a typical session of psychic entertainment be like? “In my shows, mostly of 45 to 60 minute duration, I portray myself as a mind reader and present various acts of reading the audiences’ minds. I also give the audience tips and tricks on body language, suggestion, influence, and memory development, all in a highly interactive and entertaining way, as I continue to read minds and amaze the people.” And highly amazed they are. There have been many instances where people have come up at the end of the show to Nakul asking him to read their mind, predict the future or solve a problem. “The reaction is always surprise and awe. What is of utmost importance is that my audience is entertained, and is never humiliated. They are happy to have experienced some psychic phenomena,” he adds. Nakul wants to take magic beyond the mundane. “Magical entertainment is all about defying common sense and looking beyond the obvious. But I would like to believe that there is no supernatural phenomena that does not have a scientific explanation. There’s a lot that the power of the mind can do.” Nakul’s long-term plan is to organise a seance, where things will happen not because of ghostly appearances, but because of influence and persuasion through mental powers.
Reproduced from Meet The Mind Bender – Bangalore Mirror