Sally Morgan (psychic)
|Occupation||TV personality, medium, author|
Sally Morgan (also known by her stage name Psychic Sally) is a British television and stage artist and author who claims to have psychic abilities.
Morgan has described having a psychic experience at the age of nine months and said she saw her first ghost when she was aged 4 years. As an adult she turned what she saw as a psychic talent into a career as a professional medium.
Morgan has appeared on the ITV2 programme Sally Morgan: Star Psychic, Sky Bio channel programme The Psychic Life of Sally Morgan, as well as several series of the Sky Living programme Psychic Sally: On the Road. The series have also been released on DVD, along with Psychic Sally's Big Fat Operation, which was also broadcast on the Living Channel.
Morgan has written a number of books, including Life After Death (2011), Healing Spirits (2009) and the autobiographical My Psychic Life (2008).
Criticisms and libel suits
During a show in Dublin, Ireland, in September 2011, Sally Morgan was accused of receiving information about her audience members from an off-stage confederate, which she then repeated in her "psychic readings". Following a show at the Grand Canal Theatre, several callers to radio network RTÉ reported that they had overheard a male voice relaying information to Morgan from the control room at the rear of the theatre. A caller said, "The first half of the show went really well but when the second half started, we could clearly hear a man's voice coming from the window behind us. Everything he said, the psychic would say 10 seconds later. It was as if she was having the information relayed to her. On her website, Morgan responded to The Guardian's report by denying the involvement of all Grand Canal Theatre employees and stating that her head microphone was a one-way device. The Daily Mail was later forced to pay £125,000 in damages after accepting that the earpiece claim was "untrue".
The Merseyside Skeptics Society and Simon Singh promoted a test of Morgan's psychic abilities, set for 31 October 2011. Morgan declined to attend, with an email to Singh from Morgan's lawyers stating "You well know that we all have far more important things to do than take part in this or any other 'test' at this point. She will not attend at Liverpool or at any other time."
Magician Paul Zenon writing for the Mail Online states that stage psychics use cold reading and Internet tools like Google Maps to fool audiences into parting with their money. He writes "if ... performers like Sally Morgan aren't actually talking to the dead, then I think the public has a right to know". Citing "substantial damage to her reputation, as well as hurt, distress and embarrassment", Morgan sued Associated Newspapers for £150,000 over Zenon's 22 September 2011 article. JREF President, D.J. Grothe, writing for The Huffington Post questioned why Morgan would sue for £150,000 when she could prove her ability by winning JREF's "Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge". "It makes one wonder if even Sally Morgan believes that Sally Morgan's powers are real."
In a Guardian article, Simon Singh describes an incident in which Sally Morgan gave a reading to two members of the audience, Drew McAdam and his wife Elizabeth. The reading described a man called Toby who had died in an explosion. However, prior to the show, Drew and his wife say they fed Morgan this information by emailing her website and leaving notes in a box provided in the foyer for so-called "love-letters". McAdam's description of the death of "Toby" was taken from a fictional character who died in an explosion in the 1970s BBC drama, Doomwatch.
Morgan performed a psychic reading for Big Brother winner Brian Dowling on ITV2 in 2007. Asked on camera whether she knew him, she said "well, I know of him". She had actually given a similar reading for him in 2005. She later explained that her original response was made "because the director told me to".
In March 2014, Sally Morgan became embarrassed during a performance after contacting the spirit of a woman who was still alive in the audience. The woman had mistakenly given Morgan a photo of herself instead of a photo of a dead loved one. Morgan then proceeded to contact and communicate with the spirit of the woman, and when the truth became known, the audience erupted in laughter and Morgan was unable to recover the performance.
In October 2014, it was revealed that Morgan had used legal threats, and her husband and son-in-law had used homophobic slurs and verbal intimidation, in a confrontation with sceptical activist Mark Tilbrook. Tilbrook had been in the vicinity of many stage psychic shows handing out leaflets titled "Look After Yourself" advising audience members of clues that might distinguish between a person with genuine supernatural powers and someone who "just appears to have them". Morgan fired her husband and son-in-law from her management team a week later, after video footage of the incident had emerged.
- Medium at Large CICO Books (2006) ISBN 978-1904991366
- My Psychic Life Penguin (2009) ISBN 978-0141038490
- Healing Spirits: How the Other Side can help your grieving heart Penguin (2009) ISBN 978-0141043548
- Life After Death: Messages of Love from the Other Side Penguin (2011) ASIN B004S25O66
- "Sally Morgan: I've got a psychic gift - it's my duty to help you". Sunday Mirror / mirror.co.uk (MGN Limited). 4 May 2014. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
- "Sally Morgan: Star Psychic". Tiscali.co.uk. Archived from the original on 1 April 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
- Sally Morgan (2011). "About Sally". Retrieved 26 December 2011.
- Woods, Judith (28 September 2011). "Is 'Psychic Sally' a fraud -- or the victim of a witchhunt? - Independent.ie". Irish Independent. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "RTÉ 'Liveline' Podcast – September 12th, 2011". Raidió Teilifís Éireann. 12 September 2011. Retrieved 13 September 2011.
- French, Chris (20 September 2011). "Psychic Sally Morgan hears voices from the other side (via a hidden earpiece)". The Guardian (UK). Retrieved 23 September 2011.
- "She should have seen this coming: Psychic Sally caught on her OWN video removing 'hidden earpiece' as she leaves stage | Mail Online". Daily Mail (UK). 2011. Retrieved 10 October 2011.[dead link]
- Ilain Hollingstead (22 October 2011). "Psychic Sally Morgan, once a confidante to Diana, Princess of Wales, is accused of foul play. Are we surprised? Is there anybody out there? (apart from the man whispering clues from the back).". The Daily Telegraph (UK). Retrieved 21 October 2011.
- "Official statement in regards to The Guardian". Sally Morgan. 11 September 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
- Josh Halliday (20 June 2013). "Daily Mail to pay £125,000 libel damages over TV psychic 'scam' claim | Media". London: theguardian.com. Retrieved 4 April 2014.
- Cox, Laura. "TV psychic Sally Morgan’s powers to be tested in Liverpool". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 29 October 2011.
- "Psychic challenged to prove her powers". The Daily Telegraph (UK). 28 October 2011. Retrieved 31 October 2011.
- Ian Sample. "Sally Morgan rejects Halloween challenge to prove her psychic powers". the Guardian. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
- Zenon, Paul (22 September 2011). "What a load of crystal balls! As Diana's former psychic is accused of cheating on stage, a TV illusionist exposes how trickery can fool any audience". London: Mail Online. Retrieved 3 February 2012.
- Limbrick, Sarah (4 February 2012). "TV Psychic Sally Morgan Sues Daily Mail for Defamation". Press Gazette. Retrieved 3 February 2012.
- Grothe, D.J. (3 February 2012). ""Psychic" Sally Morgan Sues Critics for £150,000 After Refusing $1 Million to Prove Her Powers". Huff Post. Retrieved 3 February 2012.
- Singh, Simon (6 March 2012). "Has Sally Morgan – Britain's best-loved psychic – ever read for you?". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 8 March 2012.
- "Brian Dowling appearance Sally Morgan Star Psychic". ITV2. 8 August 2007. Retrieved 20 November 2008.
- "Welcome to Psychic Sally's February 2005 E-newsletter". Sally Morgan. February 2005. Archived from the original on 11 February 2005. Retrieved 20 November 2008.
- Robert Chalmers (28 September 2008). "Sally Morgan: I am not mad, I am not unhinged... I talk to dead people". The Independent (UK). Retrieved 20 November 2008.
- Jeremy Armstrong. "Celeb psychic Sally Morgan embarrassed after 'contacting' spirit of woman sitting ALIVE in audience". The Mirror. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
- Mark Tilbrook. "Our campaign goes on, despite threats from psychic Sally Morgan's team". the Guardian. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
- "Celebrity psychic Sally Morgan fires husband for threatening sceptic". the Guardian. Retrieved 22 October 2014.