Published in the July 31st issue of The Edmonton Sun. News
Hypnotist credits craft with saving his life
Marc Savard credits hypnosis for saving his life.
The Las Vegas stage show hypnotist, who was born in Peace River, grew up in Grimshaw and later attended post secondary in Edmonton, was hit head-on by a drunk driver and left with a broken back and fractured skull when he was 23 years old.
It was then that Savard decided to use the “power of the mind” to help him recover from the injury.
“I thought maybe I can use this to demonstrate the power of the mind and overcome this situation myself,” Savard said in his dressing room Friday, before performing a hypnosis show on the Capital EX Telus Stage.
“I did all natural healing. I went off all medication and did all power of the mind healing instead.”
In a matter of months, Savard had made a full recovery and began doing hypnosis shows geared at educating students on the dangers of drunk driving. The shows were a hit and Savard’s popularity exploded, taking him around North America and eventually into the United States where he started doing nightly hypnosis shows at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas in 2007.
“Little tiny town of Grimshaw, all of a sudden to big strip and lights in Vegas, sometimes I ask the question ‘how the heck did this happen?'” Savard said.
At Friday’s 2 p.m. Capital EX show, the hypnotist brought audience members onto the stage and put them under hypnosis.
“The concept is bring people up on stage, hypnotize them, put them in different scenarios that I create in my mind and pass on to theirs,” Savard said.
“Would they normally dance in front of a thousand people? Probably not, but would you dance in front of your mirror at home? Yeah, you would.”
Those on the stage fell into a deep sleep and then performed out-of-character stunts like dancing, playing instruments in an orchestra, reacting to winning the lottery and more.
One of the nine volunteers put under hypnosis included Mackenzie Blaeser, who says he’s been hypnotized a number of times and always remembers the silly acts he does on stage.
“I looked like an idiot,” he said with a smile. “Everything I did I knew what I did exactly I just really didn’t care.”
That lack of caring, Savard explains, is brought on by hypnosis.
“You don’t do certain things in public because of the fear of criticism. Hypnosis takes away that fear,” he said. “It’s kind of like alcohol but you don’t have the hangover in the morning.”
“It’s so relaxing. It feels so good afterwards. You know you’re going to look like a dork but you just don’t care,” Blaeser said.
Along with nightly shows on the strip, Savard has also opened a hypnosis-training and hypno-therapy school in Vegas.
“I want to show and expose people to the power of the mind through laughter, inspiration and a true experience with their subconscious,” he said.
For now, the Alberta-born and bred hypnotist, who is a father of three young girls, says he’s happy to return to his home province and perform the art he says saved his life, for visitors at Capital EX.
Savard’s free, one-hour hypnosis shows take place at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. daily at the Telus Stage for the rest of Capital EX.