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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » I'm a real boy! » » VentHaven 2011 - Whats Happening! (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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kidshowvent
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Great Tom..looking forward to meeting and also reaquainting myself with all of you on the Café. I will be arriving tomorrow, have a couple of meetings planned, then start the set up process.

See you all soon..and if you haven't met me in person, please come up and introduce yourself and say "Hello".

I'd love to see that vent ring, Tom!

Mark
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tacrowl
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People are starting to come in! I was in the bar and met Gary Hunter, who headlines Saturday's All Star Show. Gary is also working on the documentary being filmed at VentHaven this year. Great conversation with him! After dinner I was headed out and met a red dotter by the name of Nick - then on the way back to my room I saw Karl Sandham from England and we had a great time catching up.

Looking forward to everyone else arriving soon!

Tom
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tacrowl
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Met up with Neale Bacon this morning in the business center. As we were talking, Mark Wade leaned in to say hello. He pulled me out to help with unloading the sound equipment and we began setting up the showroom for Wednesday. There are over 400 registered this year - and with the day passes - we expect close to 500 or more when Terry & Jeff are on stage.

Had lunch with Mark, his wife and Ken Groves - then Al Moessinger showed up and I chatted with him for awhile. Others are here - and its starting to get busy. The registration opens at 3:30 tomorrow!

For those who don't have the agenda - go to the convention's web site and check it out. Looking forward to some great lectures!

Tom
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Mr. Pitts
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David Pitts
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Man, wish I could be there. Keep posting Tom, I'm enjoying the convention vicariously through you.
David Pitts
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James "Jimmy" Eisenberg
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I think I have finished packing, hope I didn't forget anything.
I hate to fly with so much stuff but I love to be at the ConVENTion.

I hope to see many of you there tomorrow.

Safe travels to all,

Jimmy

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Steve at The Dummy Shoppe
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We have arrived and unloaded 22 new charactors into the vendor rooms. Have seen Tom Crowl, Dan Willinger, Steve Hurst, Steve Axtell, Bob Rumba, and several other good friends from years past. Our friend Karl is here from England. I believe he is a friend of Colins.

The excitment is building and it all starts tomorrow.

Steve

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tacrowl
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Finally met the legendary Bob Baker - but didn't get to spend much time with him. Hoping we can chat tomorrow. Had a great dinner with Sarah Jones from Australia who is on the Saturday International Show. Funny and charming young lady. Haven't seen Steve Hurst or Rumba yet - but did have the pleasure of seeing the others Steve mentioned along with quite a few others. Looks like it is going to be jamming tomorrow!

Tom
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Dr. Solar
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Save some goodies for us late comers. Be there Thursday morn.

Doc
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Bob Baker
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The "Submit Reply" buttons are starting to sprout! Have met Steve and JET from The Dummy Shoppe as well as Ax, and I bought Neale that dinner I promised him on this board last year. The even more legendary TA Crowl said a quick hello and promptly ran off to continue to chat with Sarah. It's OK, Tom. She is much cuter than I am, and then there's that accent.

I spent an unbelievable 5 hours working with the still more legendary Ken Groves. My head is bursting with things he taught me. In feel I've already gotten my money's worth, and the ConVENTion hasn't even started yet.

More to follow.

Bob
tacrowl
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I don't know Bob, you were pretty cute... Heard some good things from Ken about your session. Really looking forward to your Open Mic.

Its 3:30 - and I have no idea why I can't sleep. I'll be dragging tomorrow! Sound set up begins at 9 AM!

Tom
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Servante
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I'm watching Dan Willinger's first report now. Good to hook up voices with a couple o' you guys.

-Philip
Neale Bacon
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This is going to be a great convention. You can feel the buzz in the air. Great catching up with so many people. Just met Kelly Asbury.
Now all I have to do is get over my nerves before tonight's show.
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
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MT
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Neale

Do you know if the conference is gonna record the big show tonight? I was supposed to come in at 4pm but my airline now says I won't get there til 9pm. I'm afraid I will miss the show but if they're recording it maybe I can watch it. I hope they do at least.

Can't wait to meet all of you.
tacrowl
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Mike - recording of the shows is a no-no. Its not allowed period. You may catch clips of acts in the documentary they are making, but they will most likely be short.

Heres the rundown of my day. Had breakfast with Karl and Bob Baker - who reminded me I should be at set up! Bob actually came down to the showroom to help - and I want to make certain he knows we say "thanks!" and truly appreciated the help. After set-up, everything was working great, so we shut down and went to lunch. Bob Baker, Bill Hamm, Mark Truman, Ken Groves went to Josh's. I had to catch Steve Axtell, but ended up seeing Steve and Jet and taking a long look at their incredible new figures. By the time I caught up with the others - lunch was being served. Between great conversations, I ran into Bob Rumba, Margaret Davis and later, Dan Horn visited our table to say hello.

The sound caused issues when we returned - ghosts in the machine. We managed to get it worked out - but didn't have time to sound check Pete Michaels. It caused some stress - but happy to say we accomplished the goal a bit later than planned.

The convention provided free Jimmy Nelson totes, posters, a book on Jimmy and buttons. Clinton D. provided a limited edition Jimmy Nelson coin. After the red-dotters (first time attendees) got an orientation, the meet and greet for Jimmy started with a question answer session. Later people were able to stroll by and say hello - although he will be here the whole convention.

The evening show opened with Mike Hemmelgarn who absolutely killed his set. Mike had the audience rolling with juggling and vent. Neale Bacon was up next and kept things flowing. He opened with Jay Jay, brought out Sally Ann - the new girl figure which he refurbished, and closed with Horton's Game Show. Very tight piece and lots of laughs. Great job Neale! Pete Michaels closed with his boxer puppet, Mr. Johnson and the Little Tenor. It was great to finally see more of Pete's show. His musical abilities are amazing. Bob Hamill and Phillip Jones MC'd with a Laurel & Hardy Bit, Polyphony (sp? - its late) and a hilarious mind reading bit where Phillip played the part of Bob's wife Marty complete with short dress. In all - a very strong opening night program that was very well received.

The following round table discussion focused on Women In Vent. Sylvia Fletcher, Liz VonSeggen, Peggy Miller and Mary Kingsley were moderated by Lynn Trefzger-Joy. After the discussion, dealers rooms open and the hospitality room was packed.

BTW - met Bill and Budi - although shortly. Hoping to have more time to talk with them tomorrow.

Now to bed - my day starts with an early sound check and a very full schedule!
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tacrowl
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Quick note - Great morning lectures by Gary Owen, Ken Groves and Mark Wade. Mark also introduced Steve Axtell's latest invention. If you haven't seen it (which chances are if you weren't here - you didn't) - order now! I had mine paid for before the lecture was over!!! I think this thing will be bigger than the Drawing Board!!!

The Junior and Senior opening mics ran long in my opinion. There were some great highlights - but most acts went over their time. As of tonight's General Session, this will not be allowed. This evening we have a Jimmy Nelson feature and some of Jimmy's family will be in attendance.

Oh - one last thing... Bob Baker worked the Senior Open Mic and KILLED! Congrats Bob!

Tom

BTW - don't forget Ventriloquist Central is doing broadcasts from the conVENTion. Check their Facebook page or blog for details.
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Steve at The Dummy Shoppe
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Toms assessment of Dr. Bob Baker was a complete understatement. Bob Rocks!!!

Steve

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Wanlu
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Hey Tom, what Axtell prop? Smile Sounds interesting!

Bob Baker kills... so what's new? Smile The man is kind hearted and very talented!
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Dickens & Dave
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Quote:
On 2011-07-14 22:55, Wanlu wrote:
Hey Tom, what Axtell prop? Smile Sounds interesting!

Well, he said: "bigger than the drawing board" - looking at Axtell's site, I'm betting it's the new extra large drawing board.
http://dickensndave.bravehost.com/index.html



"Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest."
tacrowl
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I meant a bigger seller than the Drawing Board - which is one of Axtell's most successful props! I'm sure Steve will release the video soon. This creation is absolutely killer. We have over 470 attendees and he's taking orders. My guess is he will be increasing production numbers soon!

This was the first time I got a chance to meet Steve Axtell and let me tell you - the guy is awesome...except for one very generous introduction! ;-)

Tonight's Jimmy Nelson Feature was a riot. Jimmy is not only a kind and humble man - but after 70 years of showbusiness, he has a presence that dominates the room. It was a delight to see the film and then the conversation that followed. We even got a performance of Danny O'Day and Farfel which ended with the Nestle's theme. Tomorrow is the big tribute and we have a special guest coming in. Terry Fator will also be here. Should be a great day!

Tonight's General Open Mic had some fun acts that ranged from beginner to seasoned. Bob Rumba was hilarious working as the MC and kept things moving.

The ConVENTion has almost hit the 500 registration mark - and we're hoping tomorrow will make the magic number. Have to hit the bed now - I'm in early to change the room over for the lectures tomorrow. Goodnight!
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MT
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I think this new axtell item is very good. It's basically big puppet lips that move up and down held up by microphone the long stick ones that you hold with your hand. This will be a popular option for those who want a cheap alternative to the vent mask. Regularly $150. At the conference it's $130. The advantage of this over the vent mask is that you don't need ti strap anything over the spectators gave which can save a lot of time and headache. This also preserves the momentum of the show in that you don't need to take time preparing the spectator You make the lips open and close by pressing a lever behind the mic.

So this is a big time saver. The downside is that you need to constantly hold the mic In front of the spectators mouth which can be tedious I think while with a vent mask you don't have to do this. I ordered 2 of these as I think they will offer decent entertainment without the hassle of strapping on the mask.

I really enjoyed Gary Owens talk on making different cartoon and mechanical sounds. Unfortunately I asked him if he does training but he's too busy. On another note Patrick fraley who is not here is offering training on making cartoon voices. I plan to go to one of his trainings in the near future.

Mark Wade and Ken Groves came out with a new 3cd set on comedy bits and ideas for vents. It's normally $50 but $40 today so I bought that.

I also met up with Liz Vonseggen of One Way Street for help with my dog voice and she helped me make sounds like barking, howling, whining, licking... I never thought about making animal sounds for my puppet before so that was good. I bought her 2 DVDs.

One 12 year old did an incredible performance called Jeffrey Golc.

What's also nice is that there is a hospitality suite where you can get late night food as there really aren't any restaurants within 1/2 mile from here.
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