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Topic: How do I remove the rust?
Message: Posted by: greatscott (Sep 10, 2009 11:35AM)
I worked with ventriloquism several years ago, and was actually pretty good with it. But, I set it aside, and have not worked with it for the past 27 years. I am thinking about doing it again, to add to my regular kid's show. The problem I'm having, is that I find I'm very rusty. Can anyone give me suggestions on how to get back in the flow of it, in the quickest way possible? What type of excersises, or practice should I do?
Message: Posted by: Wanlu (Sep 10, 2009 06:59PM)
WD40 usually does the job :)

I think practicing the figure/puppet manipulation and rehearsing the routines and lines again will also help... :)
Message: Posted by: Ony Carcamo (Sep 10, 2009 07:44PM)
Many figuremakers, including Selberg and Detweiler if I'm not mistaken, DISCOURAGE using WD40 inside the figure's head. Yes it will lubricate the frictions (and may solve the rust problem) but it will make them dirty and might damage them in the long run.

A simple sewing machine oil is better, they said.
Message: Posted by: Wanlu (Sep 10, 2009 08:09PM)
...I don't think he meant literal rust :) WD40 was a joke :)
Message: Posted by: greatscott (Sep 10, 2009 08:47PM)
Wanlu, I understood the joke. I thought it was funny. Thanks
Message: Posted by: tacrowl (Sep 10, 2009 09:19PM)
Constant practice is the fastest way to improve. Try doing the alphabet, tounge twisters using labials and your script. Practice in the shower, in the car, any time you have a chance. Also video tape actual rehearsals and watch them to see what areas need improvement.
Have fun!
Message: Posted by: greatscott (Sep 10, 2009 09:31PM)
Thanks for that tip.
Practice is always the best thing to do, it just seems to be going slower than I remembered it going when I first started, in the 70's. Does that have anything to do with the fact that I've gotten older, and maybe slower (haha)?
The best thing I could have done is to have never put it aside.
Message: Posted by: Ony Carcamo (Sep 11, 2009 07:11AM)
On 2009-09-10 21:09, Wanlu wrote:
...I don't think he meant literal rust :) WD40 was a joke :)

Ooops sorry. When I saw the words WD40, rust, and figure, the tip I posted above automatically entered my mind... And I was so excited to share it that I didn't read the entire thread.

Anyway, remember that tip when you need it in the future.
Message: Posted by: Servante (Sep 11, 2009 11:39AM)
Tom's suggestion is spot-on.
I started in show business as a vent, then added magic. Did it for years...then stopped doing quite so much in the late 70's, save for a show a year for the developmentally disabled at a hospital (This is the 40th year!)

But, since it was only a show a year, and since the vent stuff wasn't highly scripted (What enchanted the clients more than anything was one-on-one with my figure, Louie), I got sloppy with lip control.

So, about three years ago I started reaching out to vent groups (like this one)...I purchased some new figures (Including one from Wanlu!)...and started getting serious about vent again.

My best rehearsal time, for getting rid of the rust, was driving. I started singing songs in a figure vent voice (For one of my figures named Huck). At stoplights I'd pop down the sun flap thing, look into the mirror on the back, and sing a line or two, watching my lips (Not more than a line or two, or I'd get some trouble when the light changed!)
And I found that spending weeks on the SAME song was useful (I used "Moonlight Bay"), because it helped to focus on specific sounds with which there had been lip movement the LAST time the song was sung.
I knew I was doing pretty well when I pulled up to a stoplight, singing, with my window open, and the people in the car next to me started looking for my passenger!