From today until the end of August, thousands of performers will make their way up to Edinburgh to take part in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the largest arts festival in the world. Joining them will be our resident psychologist, Rob Bailey, who is performing a run of his illusion show as the ‘Psychic’ Psychologist. As a fellow performer and a trained Psychologist, we decided to send Rob to meet Rhys and Rob, creators of Morgan and West, a duo of time-travelling Victorian magicians and firm favourites at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Read on to see what Rob discovered about their personalities and find out whether they are as similar as they think.
RB: So, how did you meet?
At Oxford University in a 2006 student drama production. After collaborating on several different productions, we launched Morgan and West at Edinburgh 2009 and have returned to sell-out shows there every year since.
RB: What is your relationship like? Has it become just a working relationship, or do you still socialise?
Rob, laughing, says, “I think we are each other’s best friends through sheer dint of not having that many friends.”
Rhys laughs: “We don’t have many other options.”
RB: In what area of personality would you say that you are most similar?
Rob: “We are both fairly laid back.”
Rhys: “I used to be very highly-strung. And these days I’m not because I know that I just couldn’t survive in the job that we do.”
Rob: “Coming from a background of doing science degrees [Rob studied chemistry and Rhys studied physics], we are both very analytical. We think like scientists.”
RB: And in what area of personality would you say that you clashed?
Rob: “If anything, the only times that we do get vexed with one another, it is because of things that are similar about us, for example, we are both quite proud and consider ourselves quite intelligent, the occasional times when there is that little moment of vexation is when you get things such as: ‘I think it is best done this way’ and ‘I think it is best done this way.’”
RB: How would you say that you are different from each other?
Rob: “I am more obsessive and more intense as a person. I am more focused on the little things.”
Rhys: “I will look more at the overview. It’s a really good thing. It gives you both things and it meets in the middle.”
RB: How similar would you say that your personalities are in percentage terms?
Rob: “I would say around 75%.”
Rhys: “I was going to say 75% as well.”
Rob: “Our personalities have literally developed to be compatible, and the people that we have become, we have become in order to be compatible. God! That makes it sound like we were grown in a vat!”
Personality results & feedback
RB: After they complete the personality questionnaire, PersonaBubble calculates a 57% similarity between the two magicians. Generally they are very similar, but the difference in how much they worry is the reason that they don’t have a higher similarity score.
Rhys: “It’s fair that the introversion/extraversion results are roughly average, because although on stage we are very extraverted, afterwards it’s quite nice to have a sit down and a quiet drink or a cup of tea when you’re not surrounded by people. Three years ago we both carried decks of cards around with us… and it was a bit of a social crutch. But now we are just happy to be ourselves.”
Rob and Rhys are most similar in the way that they that both balance tough-mindedness with sensitivity, and cooperating with wanting to have their own way. Rhys says, “I would suggest those are the two most used in the working process.”
They differ more on the way that they structure their lives. Rhys likes to have things agreed much further in advance, whereas Rob is more likely to be flexible with his planning.
But they differ the most in terms of how anxious they are; Rob is less apprehensive than Rhys, who says, “I have become calmer and more relaxed as a result of knowing Rob.”
RB: Are you surprised that you said 75% similar, but the results say 57%?
They think about this and Rob says, “We are very similar and complement each other without copying each other.”
Morgan and West are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe from 3rd to 27th August, with two shows: Morgan & West: Clockwork Miracles, Morgan & West: Lying, Cheating Scoundrels
For more information and videos visit: http://www.morganandwest.co.uk/