If you fancy being hypnotised and doing things you would never dream of, then you should get to the Excelsior Hotel, where Terry Stokes is waiting to place you under his influence. 'I am not the star of the show - the people in the audience are,' says America's leading stage hypnotist. 'The show is very impromptu and it will be like a party where I am the host.' Terry has been thrilling audiences for more than 25 years all across America since he first became interested in hypnotism in college. A performance by Jack Berry, then a leading hypnotist, made him change his career path. 'I switched my major to psychology and behaviour modification and wanted to stay in school to stay away from Vietnam,' says Terry. He then started using hypnotism in therapy, where he helped people lose weight and stop smoking. But he is the first to say that hypnotism is not a miracle cure. 'Hypnotism will not make you quit smoking. It will help you stop smoking. You yourself must want to quit. What hypnotism does is give you the confidence to do what you want to do.' Helping others gain their confidence led Terry towards a career on stage. 'My wife said to me, 'If you really want to be an entertainer, what's holding you back? You help others get confidence so why can't you have the confidence yourself to realise your own dream'?' So today, Terry spends most of his time entertaining people as well as selling self-help audiotapes on the Internet. His technique is called 'progressive relaxation'. Terry will be at the Excelsior until May 20.