In the beginning, I was a hypnosis skeptic. But to my astonishment, that quickly changed with the drop of a few heads.

I love offbeat stuff, so I was particularly interested when William Lilly of Mori-Dog Movies asked me to run a second camera for a stage hypnosis show. I quickly accepted, and without hesitation, asked the million-dollar question: “Am I about to see a bunch of paid stage actors acting hypnotized, or is this the real thing?” William laughed, and told me that I would have my answer as soon as the volunteers filled the stage.

We arrived at the college theatre, and I got the chance to meet Michael C. Anthony before the show. I’ve had the privilege to meet many celebrities, but I think Michael is the first that I didn’t hold solid eye contact with (could he read my mind?). Eye contact aside, my first impression of Michael was that he was a pretty cool guy, very down to earth.

Showtime arrived quickly. Michael’s introduction was nothing short of spectacular, and you could immediately feel that the crowd was pumped. Before I knew it, people were strewn all over the stage, piled on top of each other, running from snakes, forgetting their own name, and even competing in a dance contest for $1 million bucks. Everyone on stage was doing these wild and crazy things, and the audience just couldn’t get enough of it. It was insanely-crazy-awesome! I don’t know of any other way to put it. This is the kind of show that people will talk about for years.

After the show, I made sure to let Michael know that I was blown away. I remember telling him that what I just witnessed seemed impossible, but I wanted to be able to do exactly what he just did on stage. Michael just smiled and said, “It’s so much easier than you think.”

I had the pleasure of videoing several more of Michael’s shows, giving me an incredible view of everything he did on stage. I also really dug into my own self-study of hypnosis. There is a ton of information out there; some of it good, a lot of it bad. I was learning a few things here and there, but nothing that could propel me forward in congruent fashion. Michael told me that he was planning Stage Hypnosis University 2.0 for sometime in the future, and that I should check it out if I was interested. Meanwhile I kept plugging away, never really feeling confident to try any of the hypnosis related techniques that I had learned on my own from the innerwebs.

Then one day, out of the blue, I received a message that completely changed my hypnosis trajectory — “SHU 2.0 is ready for a student. Know anyone?” Uh, yeah! I registered as quickly as I could and dove in head first, sans life saver, and began to explore all deep knowledge SHU has to offer.

Within days I was amazing people with suggestibility tests – locking their fingers together, watching their hands float up into the air, all kinds of wild stuff. I was amazing myself as much anyone else. With a few suggestibility testing successes under my belt, I decided to break out the big gun – The Elman Induction. This induction is covered so thoroughly in SHU that I felt I could nail it on my first attempt. Imagine my surprise when my subject’s head dropped just as I achieved eye catalepsy, and sent that wave of relaxation crashing down to her feet. It was at this very moment that I realized that I was a hypnotist. A HYPNOTIST! I didn’t even know for sure if hypnosis was real a few months earlier, and now I had achieved it. Total success.

I give all the credit to Michael C. Anthony and Stage Hypnosis University. This course is totally user friendly, has very high quality HD videos, and is actually pretty fun to interact with. Michael’s teaching style is very conversational, and the lessons are full of stories and examples from Michael’s own stage show. I was really surprised that the curriculum included so much information on stage safety, Milton Erickson, agents, contracts, overcoming fear,  insurance, and even conversations with professionals in all the different major markets. You’ll watch, and rewatch the videos. I know I did. SHU really is everything you need to launch your comedy hypnosis stage career.

So, I’ve finished my run through of Stage Hypnosis University…what’s next? Glad you asked. I am currently writing my very own hypnosis show, and have a few very strong prospects that I am developing in the high school market. I have found that people in the school system get very excited to discuss the possibility of a hypnosis show at their school.

I expect to have several shows booked by the beginning of the next school year. In the meantime, I’m following all of the tips that I picked up in SHU, sharpening my marketing tools, and practicing as much as I can.
If you want to be a Stage Hypnotist – take this course! Learn from the best. Oh, and let me share these words of wisdom with you in the event that you ever doubt your abilities to become an educated, entertaining stage hypnotist: “It’s so much easier than you think.”

Join the discussion 3 Comments

  • Michael C Anthony says:

    Thanks for writing this Darrell. I can’t wait to hear about your first show! Remember, it’s easier than you think! 🙂

  • Travis Wichman says:

    Darrell, thank you for sharing! It seems a little silly now, but I just realized I should be looking for people to hypnotize! It’s really encouraging for me to read about how someone else is so amp’d for this program! Any tips on getting subjects?

    • Darrell Parker says:

      The amazing thing is that the subjects come to you. I’ve been to several of Michael’s shows, and people are usually begging him to let them get hypnotized. He tells them that he doesn’t choose, and they should just come up to the stage when he asks for volunteers. I have personally found that some high school students will ask you non- stop to hypnotize them as soon as they find out you are a hypnotist. I’m getting ready to put up a blog post about an experience I had at the end of this last school year. Talk about a confidence builder for a new hypnotizer…