BWW Interview: Thommy Ten and Amelie van Tass on Their Journey to THE CLAIRVOYANTS EXPERIENCE, Landing in La Mirada on 3/14
After performing in over 100 sold out casinos throughout the United States and touring worldwide, The Clairvoyants are kicking off 2020 with a brand new interactive live show in which audiences will be involved throughout the show and will experience the magic in their minds and hands. In addition to never before seen tricks, The Clairvoyants Experience will feature the duo's dog, Mr. Koni Hundini, as part of the show taking place on Saturday, March 14 at 8:00 pm at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, 14900 La Mirada Blvd. in La Mirada. with free onsite parking. Tickets can be purchased at lamiradatheatre.com or by calling the Box Office at (562) 944-9801 or (714) 994-6310. I hope many of you will be joining me in the audience for what promises to be a truly magical and mind-altering experience!
To prepare myself for The Clairvoyants Experience, I wanted to find out more about Thommy Ten and Amelie Van Tass, the two extraordinary clairvoyants who are taking the world by storm. And I hope after reading my interview with them, you will purchase tickets and join me in La Mirada on March 14.
Shari Barrett (SB) Where did the two of you first meet in October 2011?Thommy Ten (T): Both of us worked for a TV show in Vienna, Austria where Amélie worked there as a dancer and I was a magician. We realized soon that we really liked each other and that we had a lot of things in common. I remember the very first time I saw her in front of the studio. I was standing on the street, huddled up against the cold, damp air when she appeared, walking slowly out of the mist as though she was coming into our dimension from somewhere beyond.
Amelie Van Tass (A): I love hearing Thommy tell this story. I did not see the mist around me, so perhaps you only ever see the mist around other people. I really liked Thommy's presence and somehow, I knew that I found the missing piece.
SB: As clairvoyants, did you both realize your mental connection immediately at that time?
A: We figured out immediately that we have a special connection and that we wanted to create something new on stage and share it with the world. Since then, we've been working 24/7 together and created a unique show.
SB: How long after meeting did you began working on your "second sight" act and who decided to start developing it?T: We both wanted to show people what happens if two people are connected in a special way. We began working on our show 9 years ago, as fully equal partners. Our first important decision was that we wanted a show that creates a better connection to the audience. To do that, we had to focus more on our connection with each other to show it to our audiences, and that is the experience we strive to give them to show how magical a connection can be.
SB: Since you started touring in Europe, what or who led to your first contract in America in 2014?
T: In 2013, we watched The Illusionists in Germany and were invited to have dinner with them after the show. One of the performers, Jeff Hobson, was fascinated about our act and asked us if we were are interested performing in the United States. Of course, we said "Yes!" And a couple weeks later, we had our first 6 months contract in America!
SB: Do any performances during that first American tour stick in your memory as greatly influencing the future path of your shows?
A: After a couple of weeks, our production manager told us that a very important person is here tonight to watch us and our show. After that, almost every week another "very important person" was in the audience. After a while we thought, "OK, that's probably normal." But it was not! People from The Illusionists and America's Got Talent came to see us because both wanted us in their shows! And look what happened!SB. In 2016, the rest of the world found out about your amazing act when you appeared on America's Got Talent, winning second place after four months, six different performances and over 100,000 contestants. What experiences stick with you the most from that journey?
A: America's Got Talent was an incredible experience for us. It was an exciting, a challenging and wonderful time. We learned a lot about ourselves and how to work under pressure. A very special moment was the final performance. It was very emotional.
T: It was so great to experience all the support from our fans in the US. We got fan mail from all over the world and people are recognizing us on the streets. We are so thankful for all of that! Now we have the chance to say thank you to our fans and to tour through the United States to show people our live show.
SB: How about during the AGT The Champions, as I imagine you met several acts you had never seen before? Did any of them really impress you or influence the way in which you present your act?A: We were so happy to be part of America's Got Talent The Champions! Our first performance aired last year, and it was the biggest prediction we've ever done because it was spray painted in huge letters on the rooftop of the Pasadena Auditorium before the show was taped. In fact, the prediction was so big that everyone flying over Los Angeles was able to see it from the airplane. And even though we had already performed 12 times on America's Got Talent, each time it always feels like coming home and we are very happy to be part of the AGT family. Of course, we saw a lot of friends and made new ones as well on The Champions. The beautiful thing about it is that every act is so different, special and totally unique.
SB: How about Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas when you appeared together with AGT winner Grace VanderWaal? Any great memories to share from that time?
T: Las Vegas is always great and we already performed our full-length show a couple of times there. Last year we performed the Christmas version of our show at the Paris Hotel, which was great because on the next day, Howie Mandel performed his show in the same theatre!
A: Yes, it's really funny because now we are always performing in the same venues as Howie. So from time to time, we leave notes for each other or have lunch together.SB: As "The Clairvoyants" your one-night appearance in La Mirada on March 14 is billed as a new interactive live show, featuring new tricks and your dog, Mr. Koni Hundini. What breed of dog is he and can you understand his thoughts? That's a skill I wish I had to understand my dog better.
A: Yes, Koni is part of the show now and he is doing great! It's so much fun to work with him and he really likes to learn new tricks! He is a Maltipoo and he is with us all the time. So, most of the time we know what he is thinking and the other way around.
T: In The Clairvoyants Experience, Koni will show the audience that he is able to read the mind of a lady from the audience!
SB: How will you include the audience interactively to make the La Mirada show unique from any other? Will you walk among them or bring a few onstage? Will you perform in the round?
A: To make this show happen, we take the human being itself and everyday life events as an inspiration since there are so many phenomena out there to which people can relate. To accomplish this, we want to break the invisible wall between the audience and the stage so people will not only be in the audience and watch the show, they will be part of it. That makes it much more personal and stays in their memories for a longer time since the performance is an experience and not just a show about performing tricks. It's about how fascinating human beings are and what we are able to do if we really want to!
T: We will be in the audience a lot and we also bring people on stage! Right on top of the show, we will make an experiment and try to read the mind of everyone in the audience at the same time!SB: To what do you attribute the increase in your clairvoyance over the years?
T: For example: At some time, most people have had at least one experience where they seem to be able to sense things that go beyond our basic five senses. It's like thinking about a friend you haven't seen in years and 2 minutes later this exact friend is calling you! We take those phenomena, bring them to another level and show them on stage.
SB: Who first encouraged each of you to develop your mental skills?
T: There is no school for mentalism or for a magical connection like Amélie and I have. What we do requires two people, both working in real time to create the illusion. We really wanted the same thing from the beginning. So I guess we encouraged each other. Nothing we do is, or even can be done by an individual. We literally have to work things out in real time, together. Each of us has to know what the other is thinking, or nothing will work. This is the real secret of what we do-the methods we use depend on an incredibly strong mental connection. It takes both of us working very hard to make it look so easy. We take our connection and we try to come up with unique ideas.
SB: Would you ever consider teaching classes or writing a book for those wanting to learn to increase their own clairvoyance?
A: Many people ask us how it is possible to establish such a magical connection. That's why we are working on our very first book together called "Magical Connection" right now. In this book we are going to teach people how to make strong connections with all sorts of people. People they know and they are close to, and people you meet from day to day. And we will teach them how to do it using the same natural senses we all share, by developing them in ways that most people never even think of.
SB: What do you want audience members in La Mirada to remember most about your show?
A: We want to give our audience a magical night and bring them into our world.
T: If they can forget their everyday problems for one night - we have reached our goal!
SB: Congratulations on your just-started North American tour, with several SOLD OUT shows already. And you are touring in Austria until March 7 prior to beginning your American tour on March 13. Do you ever take time off to just relax and not work?
A: We just recorded our new show in Vienna in front of 10.000 people. That was a really great way to finish our European tour!
T: Now our full attention is on the US tour! We always tour around 6 months of the year. The rest we use for some holidays, working on new ideas and TV projects.
SB: Thank you both and I look forward to being in The Clairvoyants Experience audience on March 14 in La Mirada.