Under the spell of Renaissance Festival hypnotist Bob Garman

Bob Garman
Bob Garman

Bob GarmanBy Cheryl Clemens

Tony Zahn of Ellicott City visits the Maryland Renaissance Festival in Crownsville every year, and one act never fails to leave him speechless—the stage hypnosis show.

“It’s pretty amazing because you watch this guy pull people on stage, put them under and have them go through this routine where he tells them they are feeling really cold and they start huddling together, or that their right foot is glued to the stage,” Zahn recalls. “At first you wonder if the people are just playing along, but their reactions are so realistic. The whole thing is pretty impressive.”

So who is this man? A mystical shaman? A supernatural mind controller?

No — it’s Bob Garman, a high school teacher during the day and a sometimes actor/comedian/magician in the evenings. But almost every weekend between August and October, Garman drives from his leafy Gambrills neighborhood to perform in one of the most popular shows featured at the annual Maryland Renaissance Festival in Crownsville.