by Dan Gibson
Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage of the Discovery Channel show Mythbusters are coming to Tucson as part of their Behind the Myths tour, performing at Centennial Hall this Saturday at 7:30 pm.
I talked to Hyneman on the phone, discussing how the show came about and what Tucson audiences can expect:
DG: How did the idea for a stage show come about?
JH: Well, due to the fact that there’s a fair amount of demand for us to show up at places and not just talk, but actually do things that are appropriate for what happens on the show. We’re known for all these spectacular stunts that we do — or experiments — that involve explosions and everything else. We’ve done quite a few of these talks around the country, we’ve probably done seventy or so since starting the show. They’ve been very well received, but the push has been for us to actual do something and obviously we can’t blow things up on stage, the more violent things that we do. We’ve thought about it and we’ve spent months designing something that’s fundamentally what we do on the show, which is talk about people’s perception of things and how that sometimes differs from reality. We came up with some things that involve the participation of the audience that illustrate that...we stretch them a little bit, play with what they perceive to be happening.
DG: Was the expansion of the brand this way something you were excited about?
JH: Yes and no. We enjoy interacting with the audience a great deal and our fanbase is quite enthusiastic. We’re not attached to the show format, we’re quite comfortable on stage, talking directly to people. If anything, we’re infectiously enthusiastic about what we do and this is a great opportunity to share with people. It’s been a bit of a challenge to find a format where we don’t just talk about things, but we’ve come up with something that works.
DG: I know you’re not likely to give too much away, but what should people expect from the show?
JH: I’m not going to give you a spoiler, but I can tell you that some of the audience interaction involve putting them in protective gear. It’s very controlled, they don’t have to worry about their safety, but they may get wet. We’ll also be pulling people up on stage and having our way with them.
DG: That sounds exciting/ominous, but that’s part of the Mythbusters experience, I guess.
JH: A lot of what we’re going to do is really going to defy description, so people will have to come out to the show and see for themselves.