Stealing the show

A performance focusing on theft and swindles is given resonance in this post-Wikileaks world


Of Rogues and Knaves

The Whiskey Room, 37 Dawson Street


Outside, a man anxiously asks me: “Is this a magic show?” My vague “I think so” doesn’t reassure him, but then the Dublin Fringe Festival always keeps audiences guessing until they enter a boardroom/pub/toilet-as-venue. The lines between performance and concept are not so much blurred, as barely there. Enter Paul “Rua” Gleeson, who describes himself as the “world’s youngest escape artist”. Today, he’s also a conman, card shark, pickpocket teacher and mentalist, predicting our email passwords and pin numbers.

In a post-Wikileaks world, Gleeson – who makes our credit cards vanish when we willingly hand them over – is making a point. Be careful with your information, and your possessions, because tricksters are ubiquitous and stealing is easy. Or at least the way he filches a phone from a pocket is. The tricks are more successful and entertaining than the stories, but Gleeson clearly has Derren Brown in his sights.

Ends Sept 21st (not daily)