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Hypnotized Wildcats on campus

Students showing off their muscles as they are being hypnotised during the show.

Weber State University students had the opportunity to become hypnotized by famous hypnotist Tom DeLuca on Sept. 13 courtesy of the WSUSA activities team.

The activities team wanted to host more small events this year and had the idea of hiring a magician or hypnotist. Their search began in the summer and they soon stumbled upon DeLuca.

“We try to throw in a ton of just small events in between our big events like Late Night, Foam Bash that have already happened,” Evan Gale, the entertainment activities co-chair, said.

DeLuca began the show by collecting a group of volunteers who were willing to be hypnotized. The show had a run time of about 82 minutes and throughout his time on stage, DeLuca performed many different bits.

The bits ranged from convincing a volunteer that a sponge was too heavy to lift, to turning another volunteer into “spongezilla” who could lift heavy sponges, to even making the participants pose for the “ultimate mind and body beautiful contest.”

At one point DeLuca hypnotized a woman into believing she was from another planet and didn’t speak English but felt the need to talk to the audience. While another volunteer said that he could speak the alien language and translated.

At the end of the alien and translator bit, DeLuca asked the translator what the alien word for sleep was. When the translator said the word, the “alien” fell asleep. This surprised DeLuca because normally he has to say it for them to sleep.

In the first 30 minutes, one of the volunteers started to slide off of her chair and had to be guided fully onto the floor of the stage so she wouldn’t be injured.

She later stood up reacting to the hypnosis and could be guided back to sitting in the chair safely.

Jacob Demordaunt, RA and volunteer, was hypnotized and convinced he was against fruit because they have feelings.

Later on in DeLuca’s set, Demordaunt was hypnotized to be very hungry which resulted in Demordaunt eating an apple he had previously taken from DeLuca. After realizing he had eaten a piece of fruit, Demordaunt attempted to resuscitate the apple.

“I only remember bits and pieces. I remember wanting to laugh at stuff but do not remember what,” Demordaunt said. “I remember the end really well too because at that point I was starting to wake up.”

DeLuca said that an important part of stage hypnotism is being able to figure out who of the volunteers is best suited for a specific bit.

“I think we lost six, seven, they weren’t into it enough, some of them were just sitting there like they were asleep, others just weren’t responding at all, and that happens,” DeLuca said.

DeLuca also noted that his routine changes every time he performs to best fit the audience that is seeing him live.

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Terra Bell
Terra Bell, Culture reporter

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