Some Skeptic of Post Prom Hypnotist

By Taylor Skelly and Shadrack Kiprop-

One of post prom’s most anticipated events year in and year out is the hypnotist.  But is it real or,  is it fake?

That is the debate that is filling Penn Manor’s halls as post-prom goers reminisce about this year’s prom, which already seems to have happened an eternity ago.  But in actuality, it is only a few days past.

Joanna Cameron in the middle of a performance. Photo courtesy of

“I think some people were actually hypnotized, but others were definitely faking it,” said senior Ryan Dettrey who was a bit skeptical of some of the volunteers’ actual state of hypnosis, “Some of the stuff they were doing was too fake to be brought on by hypnosis.”

Joanna Cameron, otherwise known as “The Trance Lady,” has an array of qualifications including a doctorate in clinical hypnotherapy, and is responsible for the hypnosis of countless Penn Manor High School post-prom goers for the past year 12 years, according to her personal website,

She has performed in 49 states and is the author of two books.

Dylan Kniesley, a senior at Penn Manor was one of the students who volunteered to be hypnotized at the post prom festivities. Despite the critics and nay-sayers, he claims he was definitely under  a state of hypnosis.

“I heard the hypnotist lady, Joanna Cameron, was coming to Penn Manor, and I wanted to try it,” said Kniesley, “I was totally zoned out, and couldn’t remember much.”

She made me act like famous figures such as Michael Jackson and Charlie Sheen, I thought it was funny so I didn’t mind doing it. I actually had a blast, remarked Kniesley.

According to Cameron’s website, “Hyypnosis is a focused state of awareness when the conscious, judgmental mind slows down and the unconscious mind comes to the forefront. The unconscious mind is the “seat” of your emotions and imagination but still able to use words and ideas to alter perceptions.”

However, many remain skeptic, claiming there is no concrete way to prove someone is in a state of hypnosis.

“I think most people thought it was fake,” said Dettrey.

The jury is still out. Does the Trance Lady really contain the powers to bring the unconscious mind to the forefront, or is the whole thing just an elaborate hoax? It’s up for students to decide.