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Mentalism Experiments: Kinesics and the Art of the Lie
by Renzo Grosso

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Mentalism Experiments: Kinesics and the Art of the Lie by Renzo Grosso

The content of this publication collects the notes of a conference held some time ago to friends and colleagues, dedicated to the problem of "truth / lie". The book, published in Italy, has had a flattering success in bookstores: I think it is right to share the content also in the English language.

A good mentalist must necessarily acquire a good knowledge of the messages of the body and interpret the moods of the viewer to best conduct the effect. An excellent mentalist is always able to understand if the viewer is sincere or if he is lying, often leaving him the possibility to choose (and not reveal) what type of behavior to follow. In many effects, the performer leaves the spectator free to answer his questions truthfully or not, without knowing the choice made.

The concept of "lie or truth" makes the effect stronger and the idea that the interpreter guesses anyway leave the memory of an effect as an exceptional event, almost a miracle.

I had the opportunity to see at work, live and on video, some master magicians: after careful studies, I made different types of presentations, for my mentalism performances, according to the "ability" that I need to show: thought-reading, or the ability to predict the future, or the possibility of inducing behaviors, or better still feel figures, drawings, shapes, colors, sensations or knowing how to analyze body language and feel different moods.

The most important concept, however, is the script, the screenplay, which makes the most of the performance and makes it "magic". Presentation is essential for the success of an effect. I want to share with you my presentation for "lie or truth": I use it as a basis and modify it according to the effect I want to propose and to the audience present.

You will find a general presentation track (which I often use in my mentalism shows) dedicated to kinesics and the interpretation of body messages; from this, everyone can draw a suggestion to produce their own version: kinesics is the science that studies the language of the body, non-verbal communication and, above all, that which takes place through movements, gestures, positions, mimicry of the body, voluntarily or involuntarily.

Kinesics experts are often used in interrogations or in courtrooms to contribute, with scientific methods, to the search for truth. Furthermore, each of the eight effects presented has its own original setting, studied and tested by countless public performances, in particular:

LIE or TRUTH n ° 1: This is the classic routine for 2 people, who can choose whether to lie or tell the truth; it seems that the birth of this effect is lost in the mists of time.

IN SEARCH OF THE LOST TREASURE: My free interpretation of The Lie-And-Truth Treasure Hunt, by Peter Wilker.

LIE or TRUTH n ° 2: routine for one spectator only; like all the others presented in this publication, it can be performed with the spectator present or at a distance, on the phone or in another room, away from the spectator.

LIE or TRUTH n ° 3: routine for 3 spectators who, as in other cases, can lie or tell the truth, according to the instructions of the performer; I don't know the brilliant creator; I was taught Mister Saint Patrick, an Italian-Irish street artist, who presented it as an introduction to his show, which ended with an amazing performance of Cups and Balls.

LIE or TRUTH n ° 4 and LIE or TRUTH n ° 5: These are two routines of my conception, respectively for 4 and for 5 people, created after being illuminated, on the road to Damascus, by the great Karl Fulves.

LIE or TRUTH n ° 6: routine for 6 people, by Karl Fulves, a master.

BONUS TRACKS: LIE or TRUTH n ° 7 and LIE or TRUTH n ° 8: routines that can be proposed over the phone (n ° 7) to one person, or carried out on a stage, with four people; unlike the others, in this version the viewer can decide a behavior at the first response, and change it (or not) at the next response: a possibility that greatly strengthens the final climax.

"I learned about Renzo's work when he was finished. It didn't surprise me, as I know his love for mentalism and for being always active. The pandemic period gave everyone a "suspension" from the environment, but Renzo made a virtue of necessity. In his book he concentrates an incredibly detailed development of a classic of mentalism: Truth or Lies.

The introduction is interesting with hints that immediately transport you to the topic. The eight effects presented have a common thread that accompanies them, as they require objects such as particular stones, which immediately bring the thought to the mystical and this reinforces the performance. Each effect (which some did not know about) is explained in detail, both in the presentation and in the explanation. You can see the study behind this interesting publication. I am very happy for Renzo Grosso who on other occasions amused me a lot, even on stage with the historic group Apprendisti Stregoni! Good luck." - Valerio Bovolenta

1st edition 2022, PDF 41 pages.
word count: 8686 which is equivalent to 34 standard pages of text