Peter Zapfella has performed his Comedy Hypnosis Show across Australia and abroad too. This has given him a depth of knowledge and understanding of hypnotic trance that few hypnotherapists have ever experienced.
It all started in the usual way… an email inquiry.
An events company was asking me to do a Comedy Hypnosis Show at the iconic Luna Park, diagonally opposite the Opera House on Sydney Harbour. It was to be the annual Christmas Party for one of Australias biggest building and construction companies.
My Comedy Hypnosis Shows would usually run around 60 – 90 minutes, and occasionally longer. Truth is, my shows would almost always run over time, as the fun and excitement on stage would carry us away.
A second email from the event organizers explained that according to their new schedule for the show I would only have 30 minutes on stage. I was less than happy about the idea, however I really wanted the opportunity to perform at Luna Park so I agreed. In any case, I thought I could somehow squeeze in another 15 or 20 minutes.
They would fly me across the country, from Perth, Western Australia to Sydney and put me up in a top hotel, plus pay me the fee I demanded. It was a good deal for me.
Days before departure I received another email from the organizers to tell me that the entertainment had evolved into a circus. There would be fire-eaters, flying trapeze and other circus acts too. I would get just 10 minutes on stage.
Ten minutes? I thought out aloud. I cant do a ten minute show. By the time I do a pre-show warm-up and call volunteer performers I will be out of time. This is crazy.
I phoned them immediately in protest, and quickly realised I was not going to get any extension of time. If I was only going to get 10 minutes on stage I was going to need to find creative ways to speed up the whole process.
When I worked for Spano, a legendry old time American stage hypnotist, I observed he often took up to 40 minutes to do his pre-talk, performer selection and hypnotic trance inductions – only then did the show begin. I had a much faster show, but 10 minutes for the whole show was ridiculous. Spanos shows were always honest. No stooges or actors.