Hope College’s Student Activities Committee (SAC) hosted hypnotist Chris Jones, a regular visitor to campus as a performer and entertainer for the students.
Jones was born and raised in Chicago. He has dedicated his life to hypnosis.
Jones had previously appeared on Season 10 of “America’s Got Talent.” He was able to show his abilities to the nation as he hypnotized NBC judge Howie Mandel to sleep within seconds. Mandel has suffered from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder his entire life, but Jones was able to hypnotize Mandel to shake his hand, leaving fellow judges stunned. Jones’ career has taken off since this event, giving him recognition nationwide.
Jones grew up at East 91 Street and Jeffery Avenue on the south side of the city and graduated from Mount Carmel High School. Jones shared that he had a speech impediment in his youth and started learning magic because it was cool and gave him confidence.
He was a college athlete and studied sociology and psychology, claiming himself to be a “social engineer with deviant motives.” Jones was a Resident Assistant in his hall and used magic as a way of connecting with fellow students. He contunied his passion in entertainment and went on to perform magic and stand-up comedy at weddings, bars and nightclubs before he discovered hypnosis.
Jones’ interest in hypnosis began when seeing the traveling comedy hypnotist Frederick Winters’ show. Winters hypnotized Jones to sleep and that is when Jones realized hypnotism was real. Jones chased Winters to his car after the show and demanded that he teach Jones the art of hypnosis. Today, Jones is a professional hypnotist and stays in touch with Winters on a regular basis.
Jones went on to obtain a masters in therapuetic recreation to develop his show.
He now focuses on visiting high schools and colleges to perform his hypnosis shows. It also involves him in nonprofit work, performing shows for Chicago public schools, to be a good role model for preteens.
Jones made his audience the stars, as he hypnotized Hope students in the Maas Auditorium last Friday night.
He made students fall alseep and perform acts like dancing and making noises with a snap of his fingers. Jones enjoyed interacting with his audience on all levels and making connections. If you missed Jones’ performance, he will be sure to visit again in future semesters. Keep an eye out for more SAC events this spring, as they have more opportunities to get involved with the Hope community.