Hypnotist mesmerizes JSC students

C.J. Johnson


C.J. Johnson

“Toxic,” an old Brittney Spears song, thumped from speakers as we gathered in Dibden Center for the Arts.
Out of the shadows appeared a man wearing a black and purple suit, with hair spiked like Guy Ferrari. He later introduced himself as C.J. Johnson.

On Nov. 13, Johnson State College welcomed back this comedy hypnotist, who after introducing himself and describing the requirements for hypnosis called up a dozen people.

“The only way you cannot be hypnotized is if you are an idiot, if you are drunk, or just arrogant,” said Johnson during the introduction.

Volunteers, who were all women, were instructed not to sit next to people they knew. The crowd was then instructed not to call out to their friends so as to not distract them, unless they were motivationally clapping.

The show started with all participants looking at the ceiling at a 45-degree angle, and falling into a deep “sleep” coaxed by imagining their bodies were being surrounded by warmth. Member of the audience Anna Foster drifted off and was asked to join those sitting on stage.

With one tap on the shoulder Johnson made Chelsea Austin forget her name. Approaching her he said: “What is your name?”

“I..uh…ch…I don’t know…,” said Austin.

After his chanting of “three…two…one…sleep,” all members on stage slouched across each other, seemingly in a deep sleep. They awaited his voice to tell them what to do next.

“At the count of three you will count to ten and forget the number eight,” Johnson prompted, as he also instructed another girl to forget the English language. All at once, it was a cluster of confused hypnotees being prompted to talk by Johnson.
“THREE…TWO…ONE…AND SLEEP,” he yelled and the whole row of women collapsed into a sleep awaiting further instruction.

Prepared with blow-up pool animals, Johnson “awoke” a hypnotee and transformed her into Steve Irwin. Walking over to her, he tapped her shoulder and said: “When you wake up you will be Steve Irwin the crocodile hunter.”

“He won’t eat any of you, but he’s gonna want to attack you,” she drawled in a Australian accent pointing at the blow-up.
“I don’t like that idea at all,” said Johnson in mock horror. “How do you catch it?”

“You…uh…grab it by the tail.” “Steve” wrestled the gator to the floor, grabbing it by the tail and “pushing it away.”
The dozen were then transformed into “So You Think You Can Dance” members, all busting out their favorite moves. Twirls, hip-thrusts, booty-wiggles, and hand movements filled the stage.

Anna Foster was tapped on the shoulder. “On the count of three I want you to act like Miley Cyrus at the 2013 VMA’s,” said Johnson. Reminiscent of the infamous 2013 performance, Miley twerked on Robin Thicke, danced with Teddy Bears and stuck out her tongue…many times.

Slowly, she rose from her seat and moved her hips to the beat of a hip hop song; her red hair covering her entire face leaving the audience to speculate what was going on under there. She waved her hands and stuck out her tongue before approaching a fellow peer sitting down. Foster started provacatively dancing over her as did Miley with Robin Thicke.

Johnson commanded another student to be a torero, fighting a big rubber duck that was most definitely not a bull. Taking off her sweat shirt, she approached the duck timidly. Johnson kicked the duck back and forth across the stage to “charge” her, making the girl jump around and around. Surprisingly quick on her feet, her screaming and jumping made the crowd laugh hysterically.

After, the rest of the participants were asked to make duck call noises for the popular t.v show “Duck Dynasty.” The outcome was high-intensity yodeling. Pressing the microphone close to each participant’s lips Johnson taunted: “That’s all you’ve got? That’s your duck call?” The shrieks rose higher and higher in pitch and got more creative.

Johnson took a poll from the crowd to see what he could make the hypnotees do that was new. He quickly thought of some pop-culture ideas: turning them into members of a boy band (One Direction comes to mind). Three girls were selected and started performing songs by slapping their…butts. Filler music played as the girls danced around and started slapping out their own tunes.

A member sitting down fanned herself and screamed: “OH MY GOD HE LOOKED AT ME.” But the person slapping their butt was not a member of a band, or a boy, at all.

To wrap up the evening, Johnson informed the audience and the participants that we were all naked-thus, hypnotees started shrieking and going up to audience members and whispering, “What are you doing, you do know you’re naked right?” Coats were used as body shields. Audience members quivered and hoped they would not get called out, for sake of embarrassment.

Audience members who had seen C.J. Johnson perform, as well as new members, thoroughly enjoyed the night. Hypnotising and slightly embarrassing yourself is a good way to take a load off during the school week.