Hypnotist Jim Wand returned to campus as part of the Homecoming celebration, entertaining students this past Thursday.
Wand, an alum of Loras himself, has been involved in the field of hypnosis for over 30 years. Having worked with stars such as Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, George Strait, Rascal Flatts and Sylvester Stallone, as well performing in Las Vegas and schools all across the nation, Wand has quite a bit of experience under his belt.
He began his performance by informing the audience about the process of hypnotism. Wand described hypnosis as an altered state of consciousness, where access is gained to the subconscious mind.
Calming apprehensive audience members, Wand discounted various myths about hypnosis. He explained that a person under hypnosis is still in control of his or her own actions. Wand also revealed that being locked in a state of hypnosis — something that is feared by many — is an impossibility. He stated that anyone can be hypnotized if they are in the right state of mind, if appropriate techniques are used, if the person is willing and if they are not trying too hard to be hypnotized.
In addition to dispelling fallacies about hypnosis, Wand also voiced an extensive list of the benefits of hypnotism. Some of these benefits include weight loss, overcoming addictions and fatigue. It can also improve study habits, memory, self-confidence, concentration, etc.
After this explanation, Wand selected volunteers from the audience to come onstage to be hypnotized. Within minutes, a large group of students were under hypnosis, both onstage and in the audience. Students reacted to questions posed by Wand, responding with hilariously creative answers; acting as if they were contestants on “Dancing with the Stars,” performing comical dances; believing they were supermodels, strutting across the stage and pretending to be zombies, attempting to scare audience members.
“The only thing I can really remember, was everyone cheering for Taylor Swift. Then, I realized that I was Taylor Swift,” said junior Connor Collins, who preformed Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” for the audience.
At the end of the night, Wand thanked the attendees for a great night. He also informed the audience that he will be performing at Galena Hypnosis Live every Saturday for the rest of the month, free for Loras students who show up with their Loras student ID.