Reveen continues the legacy in Prince George
Audiences could never forget Reveen but try being a Reveen. Imagine yourself behind the curtains of mystery that made for one of the most popular and enduring stage shows in Canadian history.
The man they call Reveen was an Australian immigrant who settled in New Brunswick where the family business is still seated. Peter Reveen was an illusionist and a hypnotist of the highest order. He was one of the founders of Magic Castle in Los Angeles, wrote the book The Superconscious World, won a Dragon Award for his contributions to the industry of performance magic, was the toast of Las Vegas where performance is king, but perhaps his greatest accomplishment was passing his legacy down to his children. He went behind the mortal curtain in 2013.
One of his sons, Peter Jr., became a member of the popular rock band Salty Dog.
Another of his four kids, Tyrone, joined show-biz in a different way at first, as head of Streamer Effects International. He patented the confetti cannon, for one thing, and so many more wild special effects for live shows. For all his childhood he was around the people, many of them famous and many of them unseen movers of the industry, and with the special effects company he was once again surrounded by the show-biz community.
But Tyrone Reveen had another urge. Behind the scenes was a successful spot for him but he knew the showmanship like his own bloodlfow. His dad didn’t so much prepare him for being a stage illusionist and hypnotist as he did just live it out with his family as a matter of normal life. Tyrone is one of those people who can fall asleep during a root canal because he knows how to talk himself into deep mental states as easily as changing his socks.
Designing and fabricating the machines of entertainment was fulfilling, but being the entertainer was like a full moon to a werewolf.
The Reveen show is now on the road again, and this time, it is the son under the familiar banner etched by the father. To stand in that spotlight though, having been one of the crew members his whole upbringing, always very close to the storm but never the lightning rod, required him to take to heart the words of his father. Remember, illusion and magic acts are tricks – hypnosis is not. He had to use it on himself in order to walk out into the centre of attention and profess to know what he was doing.
“As I was rehearsing the show I would get a picture in my mind of the audience staring at me, and I would tell myself ‘they are all staring at you,’ and it’s not going to bother you. It’s part of the conditioning – the fact that I embraced it. And that is what the superconscious state is. It takes people into a deep state of relaxation through a series of positive suggestions, and then it convinces then that their negative selfconcious fears are a useless, destructive form of energy. You want to eliminate it from the way you think. Once you do that, you can be convinced, once you are alleviated from your negative fear, your sense of confidence can reach heights most people basically only dream of.”
The demonstration of that power is simple and comical. Reveen brings willing audience members on stage and together as a group, they are taken to their highly suggestible state. Then, the people on stage do things that are baffling, and far outside their normal inclinations, or even their previous capabilities. It’s proof of the untapped power of the human brain and it’s also a lot of fun. Reveen makes sure the behaviours in the spotlight are funny, never ill-tempered or in poor taste.
It’s made for a legacy. Many stage hypnotists have come after Reveen (the senior) but none have caught the international consciousness like he did. It was a show that promised adventure, wonder, and fun. It was also the perfect thing to use as a first date.
“I heard that story hundreds of times, as I grew up,” Reveen said. “It makes you feel that its all worth it, when you make people laugh and have a positive effect on people, and you’re part of the start of a relationship.”
There are relationships with places as well. When you tour enough to meet six million fans, the map gets a workout.
“This is the beauty of it,” said Reveen, looking at his Prince George calendar date. “My parents used to put us in boarding schools when they were doing heavy touring. One of them was in Vernon. I met some friends there from Prince George, the Swankys. I would spend my summers with the Swankys. I have the fondest memories of Prince George, as well as the dozens of times I was there with my father on tours. I just love Prince George, I can’t wait to get back there.”
The man they call Reveen will be at Vanier Hall on Saturday night.
The legend of Reveen continues as son performs at Vanier Hall
Pushing the mental buttons of Canada is now a best-selling tradition for one Canadian family.
Like his father before him, the name Reveen is now being worn by a hypno-entertainer who is touring the nation, wowing audiences from coast to coast with a combination of comedy and feats of the human mind.
Organizers call the Reveen experience “the most popular show in the history of Canadian theatre,” for its longevity and public appeal over the two generations it’s gone on. An estimated audience of more than six million viewers have taken in the first generation of performances, and now those numbers are set to grow.
“The legend continues as Tyrone Reveen, son of the original Reveen, takes you to the inner and outer reaches of your imagination with The Superconscious Experience,” local organizers said during Monday’s announcement. “People from the audience become the stars in one of the wildest and funniest shows that has left millions of people crying with laughter all over the world. It’s the ultimate family experience.”
The act began with Peter Reveen. He was born Australian then moved to Canada in 1961 and remained a Canadian from then on, although he was also a resident of the United States in later years.
He began his performance hypnosis career in Chilliwack and also had a base of operations in Atlantic Canada. He took to the road as an international touring act for most of his professional life. He initially called himself Reveen the Impossibilist and later simply called his show The Man They Call Reveen.
While much of his work was for entertainment purposes, Reveen also established a career using hypnosis for personal relaxation techniques, stopping the smoking addiction, addressing overeating and more. He produced recordings and books on these subjects. He was also one of the steadfast early supporters of the famed Magic Castle academy and attraction in Los Angeles (Reveen was bestowed with their Performing Fellowship in 1997).
Reveen has been cited in popular culture references on shows like David Letterman (by comedian Norm MacDonald), the Trailer Park Boys, Saturday Night Live, The Holmes Show and more.
He passed away in 2013 but Tyrone, one of his four sons, had already taken up the cause and there is even a third generation performer assuming the family mantle. To see this mesmerizing live theatrical experience, come to Vanier Hall on April 1.
Tickets go on sale Friday at 10 a.m. at the CN Centre box office or via all Ticketmaster platforms.