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Students may suddenly think they have the lung capacity of
Mariah Carey, the pecs of Brad Pitt or maybe even Angelina Jolie’s
new baby bump when Russ Peak steps onto the stage.
Peak will bring his hypnosis skills to the Gilroy High School
gym March 10 at 8pm. All proceeds from the event will benefit GHS’
all-night graduation party.
Gilroy – Students may suddenly think they have the lung capacity of Mariah Carey, the pecs of Brad Pitt or maybe even Angelina Jolie’s new baby bump when Russ Peak steps onto the stage.

Peak will bring his hypnosis skills to the Gilroy High School gym March 10 at 8pm. All proceeds from the event will benefit GHS’ all-night graduation party.

When members of the Grad Night 2006 committee asked him to donate a show to help make the evening a success, Peak was happy to oblige, particularly since his nephew will be attending the all-night graduation party this spring.

“This is what I do full-time but they called up and asked if I would do it and so I just volunteered one for my nephew’s school,” he said.

Peak, who grew up in Morgan Hill and now lives in McMinnville, Ore., basically fell into the hypnotist field. About 12 years ago the 35-year-old entertained mostly corporate crowds as a cross between a comedian and a psychic. A hypnotist happened to see his show and asked Peak to join him on the road.

Peak picked up the hypnotizing skills and decided to break out on his own. He studied with a variety of hypnotists and eventually became a certified hypnotist through the University of Pacific in Hawaii.

Unlike some hypnotists who use their skills to help people quit smoking or lose weight, Peak spends the majority of his time entertaining at corporate or school events

“I use it more in the motivational realm than I do in the therapeutic,” he said.

Peak said he’s not sure how much the GHS event will pull in but if it mirrors his past experiences with some schools, it may net at least $30,000. Still, it depends on how well the event is marketed and how many locals show up, he said.

So far it appears that the Grad Night 2006 committee is committed to promoting the event. Jody Yusim, committee chair, said they’re currently designing flyers and plan to distribute them at all the local middle schools.

Also, they’re talking to Nob Hill and Safeway managers about selling tickets at the grocery stores.

The March 10 show should last from between an hour to 90 minutes. After explaining the process of hypnosis, Peak compares it to the trance-like state we sometimes fall into on the freeway or what the Department of Motor Vehicles calls “highway hypnosis,” between 30 and 35 volunteers are invited onto the stage to be hypnotized.

Peak said there’s really no special magic to hypnotizing, he just knows the right things to say at the right time and that causes people to fall into the trance.

For example he’ll ask the volunteers to think of a vacation, to picture it, feel it.

“When you’re thinking about spring break you can taste the salt air,” he said.

Peak stages 200 shows a year across the nation. For more information visit his Web site at http://www.russpeak.com/home.htm

Tickets for the event purchased in advance are $8 for students and $10 for adults. All tickets will be $10 at the door. For more information about the event contact committee Jody Yusim 848-2405.

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