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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » I'm a real boy! » » Making a Ventriloquist appear more professional (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 13:10, Steve at The Dummy Shoppe wrote:
I agree with Tom. If you buy everything up front, then as your act matures you may find that you have changed direction and much of what you thought you needed is not even in the picture now.

I have seen people like Dan Horn who use just a puppet and their extremely practiced style to bring the house down with just their personality and a simple puppet.

Steve



Steve;

I am writing my routine based on the look of my figure and the style of my storytelling.

The first drafts of the script are directing me on my prop purchases. I am purchasing the props that will enable me to branch off so not every show will be exactly the same. The extra props I buy today may not be used in every show, but I will have options that I can use depending on my mood.

I am far from ready to perform; If all I were doing was looking in a mirror and practicing that would make it more of a job; learning from experienced Vents here, writing my script, buying props and practicing using them with the figure makes this all fun.

I am doing this for fun and in performance with my figure and props will be fun.

Thanks for the information, all info is appreciated
TonyB2009
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 12:53, Buzz Lawrence wrote:
Copied from another Magic Café thread.

“I personally think Edgar Bergen said it best. "Success comes when opportunity meets preparedness”.

When my opportunity knocks, I will be fully prepared.

True, but I don't think he ever travelled with a backdrop. The preparedness is the hours of work you put into your act, not the purchases you make to put behind your act. I am more familiar with magic than ventriloquism, but I have seen a lot of magicians spend a lot on their costume and the best of props, then sit back and think the job is done because they look right. Buying a backdrop when you are not happy with your lip control is a case of putting the cart before the horse in my view.
Jimeuax
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 13:10, Steve at The Dummy Shoppe wrote:
I agree with Tom. It is very easy to get caught up in the trap of props. They are secondary. Yes, you need a stand or a trunk. Those items help you deal with stage fatique. However, even though all the other things may be nice, add them more slowly. That way you can acquire them from earnings instead of with capital, and as you add to your props you will also have developed your act more comprehensively. If you buy everything up front, then as your act matures you may find that you have changed direction and much of what you thought you needed is not even in the picture now.

Focus on the elements of performing that really make a difference for now. Your Vent style and script are two of the most important elements to work with. I have seen people like Dan Horn who use just a puppet and their extremely practiced style to bring the house down with just their personality and a simple puppet.

Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com


Man, ain't it the truth!, I have drawers full of stuff that I bought that no longer fit my act, or I decided to go another way with,.... buying stuff IS fun, but it is smarter to just wait until you need it. Cheers! Jimeuax
Steve at The Dummy Shoppe
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Buzz:

If you want to insist on making lots of purchases, might I suggest some well thought out purchases of puppets? I would be more than happy to help steer your dollars in that venue - lol

Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com
ColinDymond
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I have a Jeff Jones backdrop and I love it.
I don't think I get booked because of my backdrop but when I set it up in someones living room it always get a positive responce. "we are having a real show today!"
It does hide all the clutter, including yours!
The advantage of the Jeff Jones over a spiderflex is that Jeff's can be set to any height, I've used mine in rooms with quite low ceilings. The Spriderflex is only solid when it is at it's full height and width. I tried one in my home but the ceiling was two low so it wouldnt stay up.
I did a show this weekend in a lage hall and I was stuck in one corner, I think having a backdrop that could be seen by all helped focus the attention of the group towards me.
kidshowvent
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I think it's a "given" that the puppets, lip control, good technique, and funny material are the mainstays of any vent show. The specific question was on backdrops, not whether or not they were better than puppets, lip control, etc. or if someone booked you because you have one. Backdrops are very good at many venues, and Colin is right. Jeff's backdrop can be set to the heighth of the ceilng, but that's not taking anything away from the spider backdrops either. They too have their place.

I think, Buzz, you are talking about things to spice up your act or show after you have a show or act to take to the public. You're right, Tony, no one is going to book you for the fact you have a backdrop, but it doesn't hurt to take all these things into consideration when putting together a package that makes you look professional.

Mark
markwade@kidshowvent.com
Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 16:27, kidshowvent wrote:

I think, Buzz, you are talking about things to spice up your act or show after you have a show or act to take to the public. You're right, Tony, no one is going to book you for the fact you have a backdrop, but it doesn't hurt to take all these things into consideration when putting together a package that makes you look professional.

Mark
markwade@kidshowvent.com


Thank you Mark, You have made my point exactly as I wanted to say it.

I am planning for the future; I am not ready to perform, remember

I started with Ventriloquism at 2A.M in December when I saw a figure on eBay and said to myself that I want to do this bid, and then won the auction ;
Now;

A Mark Quote: “it doesn't hurt to take all these things into consideration when putting together a package that makes you look professional”.

Even if I set it up behind me as I practice in the mirror in my home, it will give me the self-assurance that I will be presenting a professional image.

I think the experienced Vents here have already answered the basic question,

“Making a Ventriloquist appear more professional”

YES, It will make me look more professional; and I am planning on purchasing a backdrop.

The thread is now turned to discussing the differences in the models.

This is great, not only for me, but other Vents reading the thread that would like to improve the background of the show and look more professional.

What I am enjoying now are the stories and advice concerning the backdrop. Really I am learning a lot about the Business of Ventriloquism.

Please keep them coming
Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 15:16, ColinDymond wrote:
I have a Jeff Jones backdrop and I love it.
I don't think I get booked because of my backdrop but when I set it up in someones living room "we are having a real show today!"

The advantage of the Jeff Jones over a spiderflex is that Jeff's can be set to any height, I've used mine in rooms with quite low ceilings. The Spriderflex is only solid when it is at it's full height and width. I tried one in my home but the ceiling was two low so it wouldnt stay up.
I did a show this weekend in a lage hall and I was stuck in one corner, I think having a backdrop that could be seen by all helped focus the attention of the group towards me.


Colin;
I was thinking about the spiderflex, but reading your post I am now inclined to research the Jeff Jones model because of the height factor.

Sometime ago I purchased a Projector Screen and did not think about the height, it will not open up in an 8 foot high room, now it sits in the storeroom unused.

My list now is:
1. Jeff Jones
2. Spiderflex
3. Anyone else who can help will be appreciated
Thank You
Howie Diddot
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Quote:
On 2011-01-23 14:35, TonyB2009 wrote:
Quote:
On 2011-01-23 12:53, Buzz Lawrence wrote:
Copied from another Magic Café thread.

“I personally think Edgar Bergen said it best. "Success comes when opportunity meets preparedness”.

When my opportunity knocks, I will be fully prepared.


True, but I don't think he ever travelled with a backdrop. The preparedness is the hours of work you put into your act, not the purchases you make to put behind your act. I am more familiar with magic than ventriloquism, but I have seen a lot of magicians spend a lot on their costume and the best of props, then sit back and think the job is done because they look right. Buying a backdrop when you are not happy with your lip control is a case of putting the cart before the horse in my view.


Tony,

I think Edgar may have traveled with an entourage and played houses with stages and curtains

I may have been unclear about my point.

"Buying a backdrop when you are not happy with your lip control is a case of putting the cart before the horse in my view".
At this point in my training I am happy with my progress, not perfect, but moving closer every day

I want to practice as long as it takes to;
1. Master my lip control
2. Write a script I will be proud of
3. Be fully prepared in every detail, when I open my door for business and pass out my first business card

Thanks for the input
ColinDymond
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I bought my Jeff Jones backdrop second hand via The Magic Café. When it arrived I had some minor problems. I emailed Jeff and even though I didn't get my backdrop from him his customer service was second to none! He realy wanted me to get the best out of his backdrop.
Howie Diddot
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Colin,

Thanks for the input, even though the Spiderflex, looks good, The Jeff Jones seems to be winning out as the more versatile, made in the USA and has the best reputation so far.

I don’t have to make a decision on the backdrop right away, so I am waiting to see if someone chimes in on a backdrop we have not discussed yet.
Howie Diddot
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Well I haven’t posted in this thread in quite awhile.

I ordered my Jeff Jones Magic Backdrop today; it should be delivered in two to three weeks.

With this purchase, I will have accomplished my goal and completed the set needed to satisfy my requirements as a professional Ventriloquist.

In my discussion with Jeff, I am now a West Coast Jeff Jones Magic Background representative, serving the San Francisco bay area.

So anyone wanting to purchase a Jeff Jones Magic Backdrop and would like to see the operation of the unit, you may contact me for a demonstration.
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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...and don't forget small details like what your shoes look like.

...and your nails, quipped Nigel the puppet that rocks and talks.

Harris
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
Howie Diddot
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Hi Harris,

Nice to meet you.

Your 100% correct in your assessment of what the Ventriloquist looks and dresses like.

I view the youtube videos of vents performing for the public and they dress like they’re homeless; the clothing is a wrinkled suit with a mismatched tie. I feel it's very distracting to the overall look of the act and not pleasing at all.
maps
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I used backdrops in my show to hide my puppet sand clutter and it does make the show looks bigger and more professional.My tagline is the biggest small show in town.
One point you have to consider is the venue where you will be performing.If it's indoor it's fine but when it's outdoors,you have to consider the wind factor cos at certain times,your backdrop might catch the wind and become a giant kite.
the heart is where the magic begins
Visit my website
[www.mascotsandpuppets.com]
Howie Diddot
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Maps;

Thanks for the good information, I have given consideration to the the wind factor; as a photographer I have about 8 sandbags to hold the tripod down and secure the ends of the backdrop.

If I am outdoors with high winds with no corner or wall to back me up against, the backdrop will not be set up, if the wind is so great, I won’t set up and perform, Dan my figure has allergies and is very sensitive.

Buzz
Howie Diddot
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Users of a backdrop


http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......rum=79&5

Matt Adams

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Huntsville, AL
144 Posts Posted: Apr 13, 2011 3:42pm

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Love it. You will NOT be sad about this purchase. It's great and adds a whole new dimension to your show. I use it in almost every single setting now. People LOVE it. And you'll get bookings just because of it sometimes!
tacrowl
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Buzz,

Since you've brought this topic back to the front - I'll post a link to my "Doing It Right" thread too.

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......&start=0

You found it, but I'm not sure how many others venture there.

Tom
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

ComedyVentriloquist.com

Learn-Ventriloquism.com

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Howie Diddot
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Thanks, I think you have a good topic going; you present it in a good light; lots of information.
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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Your interactions with people backstage, front office, custodians, secretaries and follow ups after your programs can also help you not just "appear professional", but to be.

I use a program called Why Try with adolescents. In one unit we talk about the combination of Desire, Time and Effort. That is a start and the post above have all added to making not only a better ventriloquist, but hopefully a better person off stage as well.

Harris
2 b or not 2 b
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
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