Chris Jones hypnotizes UAF

Lakeidra Chavis/Sun Star Reporter
Feb. 7, 2012

Hypnotized to believe their finger will make them fall asleep if it touches their face, Marina Anderson, an Alaska Native Studies student, along with the other audience volunteers, try to stay awake during Chris Jones' show in the Hess Rec Center on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012. Kayla Hajdukovich/Sun Star

Most people have dreamed they were doing something crazy. Few have woken up to a room filled with people and a hypnotist telling them that their dream was reality.

Thanks to hypnotist Chris Jones, thirteen UAF students can now take their place among those few individuals. Approximately 80 students settled in to watch Jones perform on Saturday night, Feb. 5, in the Hess Recreation Center.

“It was funny. I think I laughed at this more than I did at the comedian [who was a guest at Hess Rec last month]”, 18-year-old computer science student Andrew Layton said.

The volunteers, under their state of hypnosis, did everything from being on a roller coaster ride, participating in a cow-milking competition, reliving their prom night to giving the audience sex tips. As the night went on, the men experienced giving birth to a twelve-pound baby while the women auditioned for an Axe commercial.

Saturday night was Jones’s first visit to Alaska.

“The audience was really good because [the show lasted] two-and-a-half hours,” Jones said. “So it was a great crowd, good energy.”

Jones, a Chicago native, became interested in hypnosis during college.

“I had a lot of free time. Everyone else was studying and I was like, I want to learn something else,”Jones said.

Jones attended Wisconsin Lacrosse and Southern Illinois University Carbondale and earned his master’s degree in recreation.

Although the event was great entertainment for the crowd, unless they were the participants, no one knew what being hypnotized actually felt like.

“You can’t really see the crowd well,” said Maka Monture, an 18-year-old Alaska Native studies student.

“I felt like I was kind of asleep, but like mobile, heavy like a sleep,” said Marina Anderson, 18, also an Alaska Native studies student. Both women volunteered to be hypnotized for the entire event and had never been hypnotized before.

During their hypnosis, some volunteers fell off the stage. Others were in such a deep sleep that they fell back in their chairs, all while remaining in their hypnotic state.

“If I could change anything about the show, I wouldn’t have had the speaker fall and I wouldn’t have people fall out of their chairs,” Jones said, adding that he likes “when people bring their own personalities in.”

The event was hosted by UAF’s Student Activities Office (SAO). SAO plans student events each semester including Starvation Gulch, Spring Fest and Winter Carnival.

[SAO] did a great job because they put my picture up everywhere and they advertised it,” Jones said. “The only way there can be bad shows is if the acoustics are bad and if no one shows up. So, the show was good because of them.”

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