Astonishment artist amazes Butler Loft audience Friday


Mat LaVore does a mind mental trick where he got the audience members’ fingers to touch while telling them to keep them apart.
Photo by Lindsey Fiala

Mat LaVore opened Lindenwood’s Friday Night Live series with a show that was a snooze-fest — literally — for some audience members.

LaVore hypnotized eight members of the audience, making them believe their hands were glued to their laps and causing them to forget their own names.

Jessie Basler, one of the volunteers, said she remembered everything she did while under.

“I don’t like being told what to do, but I did what he said,” she said.

LaVore opened the show by saying, “I have one goal for tonight, and that is to amaze the hell out of you.”

Photo by Lindsey FIala Student Jessie Basler is on the floor after Mat LaVore put her in hypnosis.
Mat LaVore put student Jessie Basler under hypnosis, and she lies on the floor after getting so relaxed by it that she fell off her chair.
Photo by Lindsey FIala

He filled the performance with magic tricks that fulfilled that promise, based on the audience reaction.

LaVore started off with simple card tricks, such as having an audience member memorize a card and then successfully guessing every one of them. Another featured LaVore splitting a deck of cards, memorizing them in only 15 seconds and then successfully naming all of the cards in each deck.

LaVore also performed his signature act of swallowing needles. In addition to the needles, he downed a string and a coin; when he coughed them up, the items were strung together.

Next, LaVore asked three members of the audience to think about a name, a time and a city, then write it down and place it in a sealed envelope.

Without looking at the words, LaVore successfully wrote down what they were thinking and showed his prediction to the audience as the envelopes were opened by a fourth audience member.

LaVore ended the show by asking random audience members to guess how much he paid for his wallet.

Six audience members were selected and collectively guessed the numbers 11, 12, 21, 27, 30, and 42.

After all of the numbers were written down, LaVore pulled a lottery ticket from his wallet which had all of the numbers guessed by the audience.

After the performance, LaVore said every audience reacts differently to his show.

“This audience had the kinda silent thing with big smiles response,” LaVore said. “That is my favorite response because it shows they are impressed past the point of applause.”

Garrett Brunsvold, who attended the show, said, “The show was interesting, but also a positive experience.”

CAB member Kelsey Gross also thought the show was a success.

“I loved how many different acts he performed,” said Gross.

Along with having LaVore perform, the Campus Activities Board provided students with cake pops and cheesecake along with a raffle for a pair of Beats headphones.