Late Night at the Markee proves hypnotic


Taylor Egnarski

Audience volunteers show off creative superhero poses while in a hypnotic state of mind. Sailesh asked the students to pose and state their superhero name and power.

Close your mind, relax your body, take a deep breath and consider what happens to your mind. If you had been in this state of relaxation on Friday at the Markee Pioneer Student Center, you may have found yourself unusually open to suggestion. University of Wisconsin-Platteville’s Campus Programming and Relations hosted the Late Night at the Markee on April 29, featuring Sailesh the Hypnotist.

According to his website, Sailesh was voted by MTV Europe as best hypnotist in the world and has had three nationwide tours with acts such as Kesha, Bruno Mars and Boyz II Men. Sailesh said that he did not start his career as a hypnotist, but that the profession kind of found him.

“I was working as a standup comic and I ended up working for a hypnotist and I just enjoyed the show and after working with him for a couple years I ended up working at a bar and working in the bar and just doing it late night one night with some of the staff and it ended up becoming a show for the bar. So, I [sort of] fell into it,” Sailesh said.

The performance started off with Sailesh explaining to the audience how he is going to “turn the ordinary into the extraordinary.” He then explained how 30-35 times a day, a person goes into a hypnotic state and that every person can be hypnotized. After explaining what hypnotism is, Sailesh asked for volunteers to come to the stage and there was a mad dash to the stage from a large number of audience members.

After about 20 chairs on stage were occupied by volunteers, Sailesh asked them to turn their cell phones off or put them on silent and then told them to close their eyes as he relaxed their bodies with his voice. After he got the volunteers to relax, they appeared to be in the hypnotic state of mind and anytime Sailesh used his “sleep gun” he was able to get them to fall asleep instantly. Sailesh was then able to make the volunteers do things they didn’t realize they were doing. He was even able to get a few audience members to go into the hypnotic state as well.

“I was surprised at how open to suggestion people were. When they are in they are in the [hypnotic] state, they are open to suggestion. It was very interesting how he could get people to do stuff,” sophomore criminal justice major Colin Tetkoski said.

Sailesh was able to get those in the hypnotic state to believe and do some interesting things. Volunteers thought they were in a Canadian snow storm or taking off in a space shuttle and saying hello to an alien,  to name a few. He was also able to get people to believe they were auditioning for a commercial, in a band playing an instrument, the opposite sex, on a dating show and that Sailesh himself was the most beautiful man that the women on stage had ever seen.

Getting to see how people react is one Sailesh’s favorite parts of performing.

“[I love] the creativity of people’s minds. Sometimes their reactions make me laugh, so I still love my show because of that,” Sailesh said.

Even though the creativity of people’s minds is one of his favorite parts of the show, he said he will never forget one particular experience he had at a previous show.  He said he had a “young gentleman” on stage whose mother was in the audience. Sailesh said that the more he asked the participant to do, the more the mother started crying.

“Afterwards I felt really bad and I went into the audience to apologize,” Sailesh said. He said the woman gave him a hug and said that he didn’t have to apologize.

“She [said] that was [her] son on stage, he is 19 years old and that was the first time [she] heard [her son] speak without stuttering. I will always remember that,” Sailesh said.

The show itself seemed to be a highlight of Late Night at the Markee this year and this may have been because of the way CPR organized the late night events this year.

“We did something weird and different last year where we had the inflatables and stuff going on the same time as the performer and that was a mistake. So it is always wiser to [let] the performer to do their thing,” CPR Director David Nevins said.

Late Night at the Markee also featured laser tag, blow-up attractions, an electronic bull-ride and balloon animal artists.

[email protected]