The hypno-hipster |

The hypno-hipster

Wren Wertin

He’s both a comedian and a hypnotist, and he’s here for the enjoyment of all. Having invited people on stage, he then hypnotizes them, to the delight of the audience.

“People come up, people just like you, come up on the stage and do funny things,” he said earlier this week.

Which begs the question, why in the world would people subject themselves to his ministrations?

“Because it’s fun,” he said. “I do a show at the Comedy Show in Denver every six weeks or so. There’s lines around the block for it, it’s gotten such a reputation. People may be hesitant since this is the first one here, they think they’re going to cluck like chickens.”

They probably won’t cluck. He’s loathe to steal his own thunder, but he did mention the vibrating underwear as a big hit.

Rusty Z began as a comedian during “The Comedy Scare of the ’80s.” Eventually, he got tired of listening to himself and decided to change careers. He thought he’d become a hypnotist or an auctioneer. After training for auctioneerdom, he decided he couldn’t stand it. Hypnosis it was.

“Nobody really knows why hypnosis works,” he said. “The theory behind it, why does it work, it bypasses your critical factor, where you go, “I’m not going to do that.’ Instead you say, “I might as well, it’s not going to hurt.'”

Much to the audience’s delight, you do.

He describes his act as less of a show and more of a party. Since hypnotists have to be trusted to be effective, he can’t make anyone do what they don’t want to do. He wants people to participate because they want to.

Rusty Z isn’t his given name, but his alter ego.

“I like beatnik music, and the beatnik scene and clothes,” he explained. “I feel very comfortable in a smoking jacket and bedroom slippers.”

Rusty Z will be performing at the Half Moon Saloon at 10 tonight. For more information call 476-4314.

Wren Wertin can be reached via e-mail at or phone at 949-0555 ext. 618.

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