1. The force
Mentalist use forcing technique to perform prediction effects. Mentalist force the spectator to make a particular choice but to a spectator it looks like a free choice.
2. The peek
Mentalist use this technique to perform mind reading effects. Mentalist secretly or using some mechanism take a quick look at what spectator has written, drawn etc.
3. Cold reading
With cold reading, without prior knowledge, a mentalist can quickly obtain a great deal of information by analyzing the person’s body language, age, clothing or fashion, hairstyle, gender, sexual orientation, religion, race or ethnicity, level of education, the manner of speech, place of origin, etc. Cold readings commonly employ high-probability guesses, quickly picking up on signals as to whether their guesses are in the right direction or not, then emphasizing and reinforcing chance connections and quickly moving on from missed guesses.
4. Memory and mental calculation
Mentalist uses fast mathematics methods to perform quick mental calculations and to remember a long list of objects. Mentalist tries to show the power of his mind using these effects.
5. Dual reality
Dual Reality is a ploy in which spectators assume that everybody witnessing the same performance effect, but in actuality, different people are finding different meanings of certain deceptive words in the conversation. Generally, in dual reality effects, either spectator gets more amazed than the rest of the audience or the audience gets more amazed than the spectator.
Use of standard magical methods like misdirection with the use of magic props or sleights to accomplish a mentalism effect, it is also called mental magic. Any magic effect can be presented as a mentalism effect with the right script.
A suggestion is a psychological process by which one person guides the thoughts, feelings, or behavior of another person. Mentalist who also performs hypnosis use these techniques for entertainment.
Equivocation (or the magician’s choice) is a verbal technique by which a magician gives an audience member an apparently free choice, but frames the next stage of the trick in such a way that each choice has the same end result. For example, the performer may deal two cards to the table and ask a spectator to select one: if the spectator chooses the card on the left, the performer will say something like “you keep this card, I’ll take the remaining card”. If the spectator chooses the card on the right, the performer will take that card. Thus, the choice of which card to use is really made by the magician.
9. Secret Accomplice
Some mentalists employ their assistant backstage to accomplish some mind-blowing mind reading and prediction effects. Some mentalist uses secret accomplice called stooge who sits with rest of the audience behaving like a stranger. During the performance, mentalist select the stooge as a spectator who looks like a randomly chosen volunteer.
10. Pre-show work
Few mentalist before the show will approach and talk to some of the members of the audience starting with the casual conversation, but in the process knowing some clues and information about their life. During the show, mentalist will select those people as volunteers and with the use of some clever presentation mentalist will use those clues to perform some super mentalism effects.
– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)