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Hypnosis show at Memorial Auditorium promises laughs

WORTHINGTON — If 2017 didn’t exactly bring a smile to your face, consider ending the year with a barrel of laughs.

A comedy hypnosis show featuring Lizzy the Dream Girl is your New Year’s Eve dream date at Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center (MAPAC).

“We’ll be sure to kick off the New Year with a lot of laughs,” assured Lizzy, who uses only her first name for professional purposes.

“Why not start the year by trying something new to give you a little extra energy to carry you into 2018?” suggested the Twin Cities-based performer in an interview this week.

Preceding the 7 p.m. performance, the local duo Fishin’ for Olives will entertain in MAPAC’s lobby — and following the show, more music, beverages and hors d’oeuvres are planned for those interested in making a full evening of it.

“Ringing out the old and ringing in the new year with laughter is the perfect way to end 2017 at Memorial Auditorium,” said Tammy Makram, MAPAC’s managing director.

“Anyone who’s ever been to a comedy hypnosis show knows how much fun it is.”

And that means anyone. Lizzy promises her act is appropriate for people of all ages, and the experienced stage professional has seen audiences ranging from corporate executives to college coeds to senior citizens to elementary students revel in the amusement she delivers, with testimonials like “I was laughing so hard I had tears running down my face” to her credit.

“There are certain things in life that are just plain funny, no matter what your age,” explained Lizzy. “The things you see in the show are hilarious whether you’re 5 or 95.”

Lizzy isn’t a fly-by-night act; she’s traveled around the Midwest sharing her unique brand of entertainment hypnosis for over five years. And she has sturdy credentials to back up her showman’s chops, with a psychology degree from St. Olaf College and a master’s degree in marriage and family therapy to boot.

“My background has really helped me gain an extensive understanding of hypnosis,” said Lizzy. “Hypnosis is often used in the field of psychology to help people reach their goals — to stop smoking, lose weight, overcome fears and phobias, improve sleep and so much more.

“It’s really mind-blowing and fascinating, and through my therapy experience, I’ve learned that building rapport and trust with people is very important, and that’s equally true during my show,” she continued.

“I always like to make sure audience members are comfortable and understand the process before they volunteer. Clinical and stage hypnosis are very different, and what you see during the show is strictly for entertainment purposes — and it sure is fun!”

For Lizzy’s shows to succeed night after night, getting her audience volunteers to concentrate is key.

“Clearing your mind from distractions and being ‘in the moment’ really allows for a person to be more susceptible to hypnosis,” Lizzy clarified. “Additionally, a subject must be willing to participate sincerely in the show.

“All hypnosis is really self-hypnosis so a person has to be willing to allow themselves to be hypnotized.”

Willing volunteers are what make Lizzy’s shows succeed, and yet preconceived notions about hypnosis sometimes hold back potential participants.

“Hypnosis is a very misunderstood concept — but that’s where my job comes in,” said Lizzy. “I start every show by giving a quick explanation of what people can expect, and then I debunk some of the myths about hypnosis.

“My show is always family appropriate, and volunteers are in good hands with me,” she affirmed. “We have a great time, but no one leaves the stage feeling embarrassed.

“It also helps to let people know that the short amount of time they are hypnotized on stage is equal to about eight hours of really great sleep.”

Hmmm. That could allow for a totally fatigue-free New Year’s Eve for some lucky hypnosis volunteers.

Either way, both Makram and Lizzy know attendees won’t depart disappointed, and might even feel better about plunging into 2018.

“We know people will leave this performance feeling like they had an entertaining evening and lots of laughs,” said Makram.

Added Lizzy, “You’ll have a great time whether you become part of the show or just watch it all unfold.”

“Lizzy the Dream Girl,” a comedy hypnosis show, takes place at 7 p.m. Dec. 31 at Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center, 714 13th St., Worthington. Discounted prices are available for advance purchase tickets, which are available at the box office from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays, by calling 376-9101 or at A social hour featuring Fishin’ for Olives begins at 6 p.m., and will continue following the show along with refreshments.