Andrew Newton received a grammar school education at the Xaverian College in Manchester where he developed a keen interest in music, literature, the classics and history. He was rubbish at maths, physics and chemistry, refused to learn German (because we won the war) and excelled at the art of remaining invisible.
In his teenage years he spent most of his free time playing in local amateur orchestras and brass bands, not only as a player but on several occasions as conductor of the semi-professional Manchester Concert Orchestra. During the summer holidays, he worked in the music library of the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra (now the BBC Philharmonic) in Manchester, spending most of the day watching them rehearse. Sitting upstairs in the studio gallery, he had a unique opportunity to watch some of the world’s greatest conductors and musicians at work. To this day he still has a love and respect for great music, something about which he is passionate. A fan of Gilbert & Sullivan, he is an admirer of Gilbert’s satire and wit. Whenever possible, he attends the annual Gilbert & Sullivan festival in Buxton and Harrogate, UK.
In 1975, Andrew went to study percussion at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester before going on to play with the Hallé Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestras. By a sheer stroke of luck, “mainly by being in the right place at the right time”, he got the percussion job with the Max Jaffa Orchestra and still harbours fond memories of those balmy summer seasons at the Spa Grand Hall in Scarborough, North Yorkshire. The orchestra gave concerts every morning and evening, with a different programme for each concert, and without any rehearsal. “You were expected to sight-read your way through basically the whole classical repertoire… looking back, I think those four years were probably the happiest of my life… uncomplicated… secure… and working with great musicians.”
It was during this time that Andrew developed an interest in human psychology and behaviour. By chance, one of the guest singers handed him a seventy year old book on the art of persuasion and the ease with which people’s attitudes, opinions and beliefs could be swayed. He consumed books on psychology and eventually came across a book on hypnosis. Starting with impromptu demonstrations of this new found skill, he immediately saw the potential of taking it into the theatres. Within twelve months, he was selling out major UK venues.
At his own financial risk, he hired the 1,500 seat Royal Court Theatre in Liverpool, performing over 400 shows in Liverpool between 1981 and 1994. His late-night ‘Over The Top’ shows were legendary in Liverpool during the 1980’s, often courting controversy and equally often appearing in the newspapers! The success was repeated in other towns although the late shows were exclusive to Liverpool. Several times a year Andrew sold out all the country’s top theatres including the Manchester Apollo (2,700 seats), Liverpool Empire (2,300 seats), Edinburgh Playhouse (3,000 seats), Sunderland Empire (1,800 seats), Bristol Hippodrome (1,800 seats), as well as the smaller regional theatres. His record of 400 shows in Liverpool was equalled at the World Famous City Varieties Theatre in Leeds where, to date, he has performed his one-man show 332 times. He had no manager or agent, and everything he accomplished was intuitive and by his own hard work.
Above all things it was a combination of a natural ability and a ready, often acerbic, biting wit which turned stage hypnosis into the phenomena it became. In the 1980’s, he was virtually alone in the business, but his success inspired a host of others.
In 1987 Andrew became the first stage hypnotist to appear in London since 1948. After delicate licensing negotiations with City of Westminster Council, he appeared for fourteen weeks at Wyndham’s Theatre in the heart of the West End, the first time a hypnotist had appeared in the capital for nearly forty years. It was during this time he met Paul McKenna, then a DJ on a local radio station. He spent many hours teaching Paul the art of hypnosis. Paul would often travel to Manchester for his hypnosis lessons and attended most of Andrew’s London shows as well as other performances around the country. To cut an unpleasant story short, in the Royal Courts of Justice in London (1992) Lord Justice Millet described Mr. McKenna as “Mr. Newton’s protegé.”
Andrew was the first hypnotist to appear on British television (1992) and his 22 part series The Andrew Newton Hypnotic Experience was shown all over the world, from Australia to Zimbabwe.
Comedians Frank Carson, Jim Bowen, Roy Walker and Tom O’Connor, TV presenters Carol Vorderman and Nicky Campbell, Olympic Gold Medalist Sharon Davies, Boxer Henry Cooper and footballer Vinny Jones, Snooker Ace John Virgo, and Zoologist Johnny Morris all appeared as guests on the show.
Worldwide, over three quarters of a million people have seen Andrew perform LIVE, and at least 100 million have seen at least one of his television shows.
Andrew can legitimately claim the largest audience for a hypnotic show; 30,000 people at York Castle on 5th November 1993.
To date, he has hypnotised over 60,000 people worldwide, including many famous names in the UK and abroad, and has over 6,100 stage and television performances under his belt.
Apart from his twice yearly tours of the United Kingdom, Andrew has been a regular and welcome visitor to New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. In 1987 Andrew presented his show for a sell out three month season at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas, appearing on the same stage as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Ginger Rogers, Louis Armstrong, Sammy Davis Jr., Liberace, Barbara Streisand and Elvis Presley! He has also appeared in Hong Kong and Singapore where he was known locally as ‘the magic man’. In 1998, he was invited to perform in China. “When I arrived in China, I was the only hypnotist ever to appear in China… Six weeks later, I was one of two hundred hypnotists appearing in China!” He has also toured extensively in India, Sweden and Norway.
Andrew’s tours of New Zealand have been particularly successful. He has sold out the 2,500 seat Michael Fowler Centre in the capital, Wellington, 25 times and has had similar successes at the 2,300 seat Town Hall in Christchurch, as well as the Auckland Town Hall, the Founders Theatre in Hamilton, the Bay Court Theatre in Tauranga, New Plymouth Opera House and many more. Over the last 37 years, Andrew has played to over 1 million people in New Zealand and is still a household name there. Andrew was mentioned in the New Zealand Parliament by former Prime Minister David Lange, who asked the House if he would be available to hypnotise the opposition!
Andrew considers New Zealand to be the most beautiful country in the world and loves the country with an unequalled passion. “New Zealand has a very special place in my heart and it’s the place where I am happiest. I love the people, the culture, the politics, and the fact that it’s the safest country in the world, earthquakes not withstanding. I spend as much time there every year as I possibly can.”
Andrew is a fully qualified pilot who for many years flew his own aircraft. He used it to commute on a weekly basis from Manchester to Jersey in the Channel Islands and from there, frequently flew the short hop to France for lunch.
In 1989 he piloted a light aircraft around New Zealand, stopping in a different town each night to perform in New Zealand’s theatres. Always looking for a challenge, he landed the aircraft on Franz Josef Glacier in the South Island, an experience he describes as ‘slippery.’ He has also flown extensively in Kenya, exploring the game parks and some areas of the country that would normally be inaccessible to most tourists, including Lake Victoria. On one occasion he flew into Tanzania, Rwanda and Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo), describing that experience as ‘hair-raising.’ And just so he could say he’d done it, he once landed his own plane at London Heathrow Airport, describing that experience as ‘expensive.’
In 1992 he flew his own aeroplane from Manchester to Nairobi, a wild trip of some 5,000 miles each way. Flying from Manchester Airport over France, Italy, Greece, the Mediterranean to Cairo and following the river Nile south through Egypt, over the Red Sea into Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, then back into Africa via Ethiopia and finally into Nairobi, Kenya.
In 1988 Andrew climbed the 19,500ft. Mount Kilimanjaro, tracked Gorillas in Zaire and flew hot air balloons in Kenya’s Masai Mara. He survived a plane crash in Kenya and once, after his car broke down in the Rift Valley, spent the night in a Masai village, an experience he describes as “a huge eye-opener”.
He is in great demand as a speaker, lecturer and teacher, specialising in the nature of suggestion, hypnosis, group behaviour and hypnosis in religion. He has on several occasions worked with people indoctrinated by religious cults. He does this work free and he is highly successful in this field.
Andrew Newton is a regular speaker at Psychology Conferences in the UK and regularly lectures to Psychology Students on Hypnosis.
Andrew is principal lecturer in Hypnosis at the Hypnoseakademiet in Norway, Europe’s premier Hypnosis and EFT training school, a position he has held since 2008.
In 2014, Andrew was invited by the City of Melbourne to take part in a project to make four short films about changing Melbourne’s residents’ perception of the city. All the participants in the experiment had been born and brought up in Melbourne. Filming took a month and the finished films were titled ‘The Land of In-Between.’ The project was groundbreaking in the techniques employed and in the results of the experiment. Under hypnosis, participants were given a new experience of the Central Business District, specifically, the shops, art galleries, coffee shops, bars, clubs, music venues and restaurants hidden away in between the office buildings and sky-scrapers – hence the title of the films.
In 2015, Andrew accepted an invitation to lecture in Hypnosis at IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) in Delhi, Jodphur, Rajasthan, Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda Gujarat, and Bits Pilani University, Goa. Whilst in India, he also found time to do shows in those cities. Stage Hypnosis is new to India, and Andrew is fast becoming a nationally recognised figure, attracting audiences of thousands.
Returning to the UK in 2017, Andrew worked in Clinical Therapy in Harley Street, London, specialising in the treatment of deep trauma and severe emotional problems. He is a Member of the Royal Society of Medicine and through his work in the field of criminal psychology has been a member of the International Police Association since 2005.
In 1997 Andrew moved to Cape Town, South Africa, where he is now based for much of the year. He also spends a few weeks every year in Conwy, North Wales, a beautiful medieval walled seaside town, complete with castle built by Edward I in 1300.