Impossible, Mayflower Theatre

ATTEMPTING a bold escape from a straitjacket while on fire and suspended upside down above the stage.

Performing a back flipping card trick, reading the minds of audience members and firing a crossbow across stage while blindfolded.

It’s fair to say, this is not your everyday theatre experience.

Taking their inspiration from the magicians of the past, the likes of Harry Houdini and David Copperfield, a new generation of illusionists show us that the Impossible is entirely possible if you have the right tricks up your sleeve.

Producers have gathered an impressive array of performers for a show which takes us on a magical journey through history.

The tempo remains high throughout the two and a half hour production as each takes a turn at showing off their skills.

The star of the show for me was daredevil and escapologist Jonathan Goodwin, he of the straitjacket trick. The jaw-dropping stunt was only a small part of a repertoire which drew gasps from a delighted audience.

Chris Cox’s mind reading was a joy; the charismatic and witty performer involving everyone in his silly games. I’m assured not a single one was planted in the audience, not even the lady who asked to see him dance in a My Little Pony leotard – and got her wish.

Winchester’s own Ben Hart has several slots in which to show off his remarkable dexterity with everything from cards to ping pong balls.

The curtain comes down on an enjoyable night with hip hop street magician Magic Bones and his Michael Jackson dance moves and brilliant card tricks to the tracks of DJ Yoda.

Various Debbie McGee style glamorous assistants come out unscathed despite being made to vanish and reappear, sawn in half and holding a balloon which is shot at by an expert marksman.

A huge success on the West End stage, and now opening its UK tour in Southampton, the show has a Vegas feel to it.

These are essentially magic classics, cleverly reimagined for a new generation.

Big screens allow you to feel part of the action even if you’re not in the front row. And, if you don’t want to have your mind read, your wallet stolen or your wedding ring bent out of shape, I wouldn’t go too close.

Old school variety with great new twists, Impossible certainly worked its magic on me.

Impossible runs until Saturday.

Tickets: 023 8071 1811 or visit the theatre's website.