Illusionist Derren Brown Escorted from Tables at UK Casino
Derren Brown, a celebrated English master of thaumaturgy, self-proclaimed spiritualist and illusionist extraordinaire, has met his match. According to his mind-blowing acts, he can do everything from pulling tarantulas form hats to reading minds and hypnotizing innocent members of the audience. The one thing he cannot do, apparently, is play blackjack at the Broadway Plaza Casino in Birmingham.
Just after finalizing a more than two hour performance of his latest “Infamous” tour at the New Alexandra Theatre in Birmingham, Derren Brown decided to unwind with a session of 21 at the nearby Broadway Plaza Casino’s card tables. Management, however, did not like that idea one bit. Brown was treated quite well in all other respects, given food and fine service, but he was staunchly forbidden to place any bets at the blackjack table.
Being a magician by trade, it is certainly understandable that a casino would refuse to permit Derren from participating at the tables. He himself admitted that this wasn’t the first time he had been refused. “Over the years I’ve been banned from playing at most of the UK’s casinos, so I wasn’t unduly surprise,” Brown coolly commented in an interview with the Mirror.
He isn’t exactly one of the most trustworthy entertainers in Europe. Brown makes a living by tricking the public into believing his illusions to be reality. In one of his former shows, entitled “Apocalypse”, he convinced one Steven Brosnan that a catastrophic meteorite shower had collided with the planet, ending life as we know it and that Brosnan was among just a few sole survivors on Earth. This particular performance was strongly criticized by viewers who believed the target was merely a very good actor, but Brown maintains that it was merely his superior powers of hypnosis.
An anonymous source within the casino confirmed Brown’s ejection from the Broadway Plaza on Saturday. “He definitely wasn’t allowed to bet,” the insider verified. “Derren was politely told that under no circumstance was he allowed to stake any money and was later escorted from the casino.” Although the source was candid about the end results, any comments regarding why the illusionist was banned and accompanied by security to the exit were not forthcoming. Thus it is unknown whether Brown was caught counting cards, or if it was a simple matter of probable cause and distrust that led to his permanent ejection.
By counting the cards, a player is able to determine the probability of being dealt a blackjack, or at least a more advantageous hand. When the deck is ‘hot’, they will place a larger wager, while reserving smaller bets for a cold deck. The act of counting cards is not illegal by any means, but it is resolutely frowned upon by casinos and, if caught, a player can and will be removed from the premises via escort.
According to Derren’s personal account of the events of that night, “I went in after the show and sat down to play blackjack. They were very nice, served me food, but they wouldn’t let me play.” The notorious thaumaturgist went on to tell The Mirror, “So I watched the others for a bit and then left. I was escorted out by a member of staff and the manager.”
Derren Brown’s “Infamous” tour, which has received some colorfully mixed reviews thus far, began in March and will continue until 2014 with confirmed dates through August, including stops at The Alhambra in Bradford, De Montfort Hall in Leicester, BIC in Bournemouth, Theatre Royal in Norwich, The New in Hull, and The Palace Theatre in London. Nearby casinos that haven’t bothered to proscribe the notorious illusionist will surely be on the lookout. With that said, perhaps it’s time for Brown to discover the wonders of the online gambling community?