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Topic: Business Question for Hypnotists/Mentalists
Message: Posted by: Scotty Mac (Nov 11, 2005 11:56AM)
Hi All,

I'm currently a mentalist, but I'm considering investing in "live" hypnosis training to add more flexibility to what I can offer to clients. I'm really more intersted in stage hypnosis than hypnotherapy, and have read the many posts by Lee Darrow and others to get properly trained.

My question is for those of you that are both mentalists and hypnotists, which tends to be a bigger revenue generator? My main concern is investing in the training and not seeing a return on investment. What percentage of your shows are mentalism versus hypnosis? What's the market like for stage hypnotists in the US (in general)?

Thanks,

Scott
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Nov 15, 2005 05:38PM)
Do the hypnosis. It pays better
Message: Posted by: Scotty Mac (Nov 16, 2005 07:15PM)
Thanks, Danny. The mentalist in me was sensing that based on the limited responses.:) Just got back from Mindvention and was able to talk to some working hypnotists who gave me some great insight.

Scott
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Nov 16, 2005 10:03PM)
That being said.....what I mean is all things being equal hypnotists get paid better. A bad hypnotist will be paid worse than a good mentalist.
Message: Posted by: BlackSalt (Nov 17, 2005 02:08AM)
Scotty Mac,

Let's remember ... a top entertainer (who is or has a top promoter) will make the best money regardless how he/she chooses to display their talents.

If you really want to move into theatrical hypnosis, please establish a clinical knowledge but remember to claim your right as THE ENTERTAINER (they are paying you not the volunteers – and in the end you want them to remember YOU not “some hypnotist”).

It is nice to offer your clients a choice of productions. However, be sure you have the time to focus your energies on the learning curve. Will your current show suffer for lack of marketing/development while your energies are elsewhere? Could you redesign your current show for different audiences?

Best regards,
BlackSalt
Message: Posted by: Scotty Mac (Nov 17, 2005 12:31PM)
Danny/Michael,

Thank you both for your feedback. I agree that quality is paramount in either field. Do either of you have any recommendations regarding formal hypnosis training?

Thanks,

Scott
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Nov 18, 2005 01:10AM)
Scott, PM me and I can help you a lot. Location will be a factor, but opinions vary so take mine and everyone elses with a grain of salt and make a decision on your own.
Message: Posted by: Parson Smith (Nov 27, 2005 07:56PM)
Danny,
I am interested in why the opinion that hypnotism pays better.
I am not disagreeing, just wondering why.
Thanks.
Peace,
Parson
Message: Posted by: jl17 (Dec 8, 2005 06:46PM)
When I started hypnosis I did get paid more, but now I'm doing more mindreading shows. I say that I am very picky with the hypnosis shows (which I am). I much perfer to do a mindreading show, but if I feel like I don't then I don't. Now I am pushing my mindreading shows on more clients and they are interested. Anything to do with the mind is interesting to people.
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 8, 2005 09:45PM)
Parson, I know few mentalists who average what hypnotists will......

I know the exceptions to the rule Craig Cargis, and the like. I am talking an AVERAGE hypnotist VS. an AVERAGE mentalist and you will get paid better as a hypnotist.

Compare at high levels too if you want too.....hypnotists across the board at equal levels get paid better than mentalists at that level.....in my experience.
Message: Posted by: mota (Dec 9, 2005 10:10AM)
Both shows play strong...but there is a big difference.

Hypnotism shows are far easier to book...people know what to expect...over the years, many of the professional mentalists I have known have done hypnotism "on the side".

You will make much more money, for the same amount of time invested, selling and performing hypnotism shows...it's the real world and that has been the experience of myself, my friends, and some more who post here. Mentalism shows, for whatever reasons, are just much harder to book.
Message: Posted by: Martin S Taylor (Dec 9, 2005 11:20AM)
Maybe hypnotism pays better in the USA, but here in the UK Derren Brown has done so much to bring mentalism to the public that it's mentalism they want.

Hypnotism is (in my opinion) only just beginning to recover from the overkill and bad publicity it got seven or eight years ago, when Paul McKenna brought it to mainstream television, and people's perception of it was that it was bland family entertainment. It *is* recovering, but it's a long slow haul.
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 9, 2005 04:46PM)
Martin NOBODY in America saw that


Hypnosis is BY FAR the most popular show on college campuses......as well as a major fair attraction.

This is to say NOTHING about mentalisim.....only that hypnosis is quite strong.
Message: Posted by: Martin S Taylor (Dec 12, 2005 05:11PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-09 17:46, Dannydoyle wrote:
Hypnosis is BY FAR the most popular show on college campuses......as well as a major fair attraction.
[/quote]

Glad to hear it! My post was only intended to reflect the position in the UK.

Martin
Message: Posted by: hypn (Dec 13, 2005 08:28AM)
Martin, I strongly disagree with your comments of Paul Mckenna's shows. His success led to such a surge in stage hypnotists (same situation currently experienced with Derren Brown) that every second rate artist presented himself as a qualified performer. After the death of Sharron Tabbart, the media went wild and stage hypnosis became the act you did not want to have at your venue.

There are certain greates in the world of stage hypnosis eg. Ormond Mcgill, Pat Collins, Paul Mckenna, Max Collie, Peter Casson, Martin st. James and many more who have consistently provided the platform for others to earn a easy income
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 13, 2005 09:01AM)
Where is this easy income? ..........I had to work my but off and still do for every bit of income I have!!!!!
Message: Posted by: hypn (Dec 13, 2005 10:04AM)
My appologies, "easy income" is the wrong expression. I should have said these guys kept hypnosis in the news.
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 13, 2005 02:21PM)
No need to appologise......just curious why I was missing the easy income is all! thanks for the clarification.
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Dec 26, 2005 05:31AM)
With a hypbosis show, you are working without a net - if you screw up or have a non-responsive audience, you are in deep kim-chee (korean, n. def: "looks like coleslaw, tastes like napalm"). There is very little you can do for a fallback position. Your show rests firmly on the brains of your volunteers. If you pull a bunch of people who refuse to play, you are S.O.L. Even if you carry backup material in the form of another act, you have FAILED as a hypnotist and that will not sit well with your booker, agent or the venue.

You are also working with a large group of people who are NOT used to being on stage and the problems that such a scenario can bring can terrify even the most experienced performer. Be aware that Murphy's Law is out there laying for you!

As a mentalist, you KNOW that your effects will work if you have practiced them. There is far less of a risk factor in your act and you can concentrate on relating to your audience. You will also not be dealing with large groups of people, generally, on stage, but groups of two ot three people, maybe five at most. This is easier to control, easier to manage safely and easier to relate to in an entertaining manner.

A mentalist's show is, generally, less manic, less physically demanding and more reliable a show for the performer and the booker.

It also has a somewhat lower liability aspect due to the issues I raised above.

Just to scare you further.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
Message: Posted by: kevinuncanny (Dec 26, 2005 12:30PM)
Neither one pays better then the other. It depends how good you are at either one and how you promote it. Alain Nu (mentalist) is making far more then most hypnotists as is Marc Salem and many others.

How much have you REALLY invested into your mentalist show? Have you worked with professional designers for your promo? Is your promo correct for the market you're in?

Your act will dictact your pays as much as your promo and abilities will.
Message: Posted by: KWEBER (Dec 28, 2005 10:48AM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-13 09:28, hypn wrote:
After the death of Sharron Tabbart, the media went wild and stage hypnosis became the act you did not want to have at your venue.
[/quote]

Hypn -- would you be kind enough to fill us in on this story? I assume this happened in the UK.

As to which "pays more," there are issues to be considered beyond the simple numbers on your pay check.

While I made a very good living as a stage hypnotist, I have said for the past ten or more years that if I was starting over, I would concentrate on developing a stronger mentalism act. Two reasons: 1) as cited above, hypnosis is sink or swim. You WILL have shows when things don't go right, and that happens, everyone in the audience knows it. A strong mentalism act, on the other hand, can ALWAYS be brought to a successful conclusion.

And 2) we live in a litigious society. If one of you volunteers trips, or bumps their head, or just complains of a headache afterwards, a lawsuit is possible. Granted, this almost never happens -- but it has, and as more magicians and mentalists look for the "easy" money in hypnosis, without proper insight into what they are doing, it will happen more frequently. A lawsuit against you, even if you win, can be incredibly expensive -- especially here in the US.

As a side note, years ago I gave this advice to a mentalist who was strongly considering moving into hypnosis. He took my advice and now is a VERY successful mentalist -- making lots of money!

The idea that one field pays more than the other is missing the point. You are either a talented entertainer, or you're not. You know how to market yourself, or you don't.

Ken
Message: Posted by: bobser (Jan 12, 2006 05:36AM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-26 13:30, kevinuncanny wrote:
Neither one pays better then the other. It depends how good you are at either one and how you promote it. Alain Nu (mentalist) is making far more then most hypnotists as is Marc Salem and many others.

How much have you REALLY invested into your mentalist show? Have you worked with professional designers for your promo? Is your promo correct for the market you're in?

Your act will dictact your pays as much as your promo and abilities will.
[/quote]

I do understand what you say and agree with all of it. Well almost.
As dannydoyle said: the ave hyp V the ave ment... the ave hypnotist does earn far more than the mentalist. It's simply a fact.

Bobser.
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Jan 12, 2006 09:48PM)
A Google search for "Sharron Tabbert" or any reasonable spelling of her name "Sharron Tabbart, Sharon Tabbart, Sharon Tabbert, Sharron Tabbert") came up with nothing.

I tend to scan the news for information on hypnosis pretty thoroughly and this is new to me. any information would be appreciated.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
Message: Posted by: kevinuncanny (Jan 17, 2006 01:06PM)
Bobser....

I disagree. The ave mentalist does not make less then the ave hypnotist. I'm sorry but both have high end and low end. In fact many low - middle end mentalists get more work because of the availability of venues. A new hypnotist (and most experienced ones) can't/won't work a romm of 12 people -- a mentalist can kill in that venue. More clubs are willing to work with a mentalist because of 100% success rate and they aren't as enviromentalyy specific as a hypnotist.

Now you can talk about the college market and the rumored money that hypnotists make there. Mentalists make just as much. And untill you have spent 2 - 3 years building your name in ANY given market, no matter your act, you're not going to make the money.

PERFECT ANY 1 ACT AND YOU WILL MAKE TOP DOLLAR. Changing your type of act every 2 years because you think someone makes more means you'll NEVER make the money you want.
Message: Posted by: kcalB (Jan 20, 2006 09:07PM)
I'd like to weigh in here as I perform both Mentalism and Hypnnosis and I do earn as much for a Mentalism Show as I do for a Hypnosis Show however I do more Mentalism then Hypnosis simply because there are more oportunities for performing Mentalism eg.,,smaller house parties and smaller banquets.
Finally I do clinical hypnosis so I'm not intimidated by a small audience with few prospects for volunteers whereas most Hypnotists that I know are edgy about any group smaller then 500 people which would lead to the logical conclusion that more work is available to the Mentalist.

Best,
Sebastian Black
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Jan 21, 2006 11:54PM)
The problem is making Hypnosis a numbers game. It is not. It is a matter of skill and tools that you have available to do your craft properly. 20 or 100 you can still put on a good show. It won't be the same show but can still be entertaining.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: kevinuncanny (Jan 22, 2006 01:04AM)
Ok Martin. I agree. Now, do a hypnosis show with 3-5 audience members
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Jan 22, 2006 11:46PM)
Ok, hypnotize them all. The 2 most responsive are brought up and the remaining 3 are brought back out. You have an audience and you have participants. It will still be fun and everyone will have a great time. This is usually called an appearance on a radio show :>)

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: kevinuncanny (Jan 23, 2006 10:55AM)
RIght......I've done radio totally different animal then a show.....in a 5 person show the 2 most responsive are usually not under and the 3 in the audience are embarrassed for the performer who is booked to do 45 minutes.
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Jan 30, 2006 01:08PM)
Doing radio hypnosis is a lot different than doing a regular show, though. When I do radio appearances, like on Mancow's Morning Madhouse, or JJ's Morning Crew, or any of the others I've done over the years, it's always working with one, two or three people at best and doing very limited bits on the radio - sound bites, nothing more.

Your material has to be sound oriented - imitations, characterizations, mimickery, triggered reponses to do something audible. As a forinstance, when I did Buzz Killman's show in Chicago, for a promotion for the Woody Allen movie "The Curse of the Jade Scorpion," I had her set up to say, "You must see the Curse of the Jade Scorpion," every time I snapped my fingers.

Well, I did this several times, interrupting her in the middle of several sentences, leaving the host, Buzz Killman, in stitches, especially when, during the weather, Wendy was saying, "Tonight it will be fair and," SNAP! "you must see The Curse of the Jade scorpion - WILL YOU QUIT THAT!!"

Buzz was on the floor and that show and that bit was the most replayed routine that year.

But it's not the same thing as doing a private party for 5 people. That's handled differently.

I'd do individual demonstrations with them and then do doubles and maybe triples as the evening progressed. In fact, on the few occasins I've been booked to do those kinds of parties, that's exactly what I've done. Play it on a more intimate level.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (Feb 3, 2006 04:07PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-26 06:31, Lee Darrow wrote:
With a hypbosis show, you are working without a net - if you screw up or have a non-responsive audience, you are in deep kim-chee (korean, n. def: "looks like coleslaw, tastes like napalm"). There is very little you can do for a fallback position. Your show rests firmly on the brains of your volunteers. If you pull a bunch of people who refuse to play, you are S.O.L. Even if you carry backup material in the form of another act, you have FAILED as a hypnotist and that will not sit well with your booker, agent or the venue.
[/quote]
This is called in hypnotism "Audience Acceptance" if the audience "Wants" to be part of the show and will come up on the stage and do it. With an open mind and follow the instruction you have "Audience Acceptance"! Then it is a great show and you will have hypnosis happen. Because if THEY WANT to be hypnotized and be part of the show they will and you have "Audience Acceptance"!

If they don't want to be hypnotized. You do not have audience acceptance and if you are hired to do a hypnosis show for a group and no one wants to do it - GOD HELP YOU!

Lee is 100% correct and has had a lot of years in hypnotism as entertainment!

If a person can accept working without a net has the NERVE of working without a net then they have a better chance of becoming a hypnotist. If a person has a problem with the risk of perhaps no show because the audience is not in the mood or does not want to do it. Then perhaps they should choose something else.
Message: Posted by: hypn (Feb 5, 2006 02:04AM)
QUOTE: - "Martin, I strongly disagree with your comments of Paul Mckenna's shows. His success led to such a surge in stage hypnotists (same situation currently experienced with Derren Brown) that every second rate artist presented himself as a qualified performer. After the death of Sharron Tabbart, the media went wild and stage hypnosis became the act you did not want to have at your venue."

TO clarify my previous post and answer Lee Darrow's question - please see
http://www.tracieokeefe.com/sharrontabarn.htm
although I strongly disagree in the content contained in her report, she also published a book called "dangers of stage hypnosis" which makes for a interesting read. Most of the cases mentioned in the book could be explained away, but a person wonders what a layman would have thought

Andre