Mark Toland wins Best of Coffeehouse prize
By Bob Evans
Patrons at the KC Fringe Festival found a superior performance when they chose and attended Mark Toland Mind Reader’s show at the Westport Coffee House and soon learned that only advance ticketing guaranteed them the chance to see the marvels of Toland’s skills.
Toland won the Best of Venue award which granted him a bonus performance at the Coffee House performance space that holds 90 persons. A Coffee House employee said that they set up 90 chairs because that’s all they have–and they were packed throughout his run. Rightfully so. Toland presents the most incredible hour act of reading the minds of random persons in the audience.
No set ups or phony audience plants here. Toland throws a stuffed miniature likeness of himself into the audience and asks for the doll to be tossed two additional times to insure random selection of audience members. Those selected audience members become the target of his mind-reading skills.
He asks them to select a number on a die (singluar of dice) and announces the number. He selects five and unveils their occupations (as written by them on cards). He asks subjects to open a book and randomly select a page and then a word on the page. That and more are just a sampling of his skills.
Toland’s biggest revelation comes at the end of the show with the aid of a telephone keypad, a calculator, and an audience member randomly selecting and multiplying numbers on a cell phone to reveal an astounding power to both read a mind and project information into someone else’s mind.
No one who sees his show comes away with anything but smiles and the overwhelming notion that he can and does read minds. His skills produce gasps, awes, thunderous applause, standing ovations, and head-shaking disbelief that someone can perform as solidly as Toland. He makes believers of his audience.
Do not miss any opportunity to see Mark Toland perform. He has many followers and has performed on many TV networks. He could sell out bigger venues if he chooses to enter the KC Fringe. My fingers are crossed that he does just that–annually.
According to info provided by the KC Fringe: “A TRULY MAGICAL EXPERIENCE” – Theatre Is Easy. Six-time festival award winner presents a mysterious, MIND BLOWING show. The audience is the cast; the audience’s thoughts are his props; and your mind is his stage. “This show will BLOW YOUR MIND” – Orlando News Now. “Audience Choice” – FRIGID NYC. “Pick of Fringe” – Orlando
Fringe. “Top Selling Show” – Chicago Fringe. “Toland brilliantly combines comedy, magic and even a splash of philosophy into this MUST-SEE PERFORMANCE.” – Theme Park University.”
On a side note, Mark Toland graduated from Iola High School in Iola, Kansas, about 100 miles southwest of the KC Metro area.
Tags: Mark Toland, KC Fringe Festival, Westport Coffee House, KC Theater, KC Performing Arts, KC Arts & Entertainment