For those of you who don’t receive The Dummy Shoppe newsletter, we are running the blog somewhat in tandem with the newsletter again this week.
Last week we added 10 new characters to the site. Since the long hours did not kill our webmaster Steve Hurst, we thought we would try again (Its a joke Steve).
This week we are adding 10 more characters. They are;
Time out from the serious side of the business this week. After much heckling from several of our good friends, we are adding several new puppets to the web site over the next few weeks.
The goal is about 10 per week and if we don’t work Steve Hurst our webmaster to death, the first ten are now up. One good thing about having a great webmaster is that with his love of the art form, he is always there when we call on him.
You have something that you do. You are good at it. You are a Ventriloquist. You need to spend all your spare time improving and honing your skills as a Ventriloquist. Unfortunately, most Ventriloquists spent (or waste) a huge amount of their time chasing down leads to get bookings. This may be necessary in order to get shows doing what you do.
It seems to be a Catch 22 situation. You don’t seem to have enough time to do what you do, because you are spending so much time being forced to seek the bookings you need to be able to do what you really want to do. It is a vicious circle.
Here is something to consider. Lets assume that you have 50 hours a week to devote to your art form. If you only get to spend five hours a week actually performing, then you are only spending 10% of your time performing each week. You must spend 10-15 hours (20 – 30% of your time) a week practicing, writing scripts, maintaining your puppets and equipment. There is no way around this time expenditure.
This week we received an Email from one of our friends asking for advice on getting an article published. We don’t have any good advice to offer, but some of you have more experience in this topic.
The basic article is a wonderful example of writing a great bio of yourself. Take a minute to read this. Even if you don’t have any information to offer Kevin, you can still get some great ideas on self promotion. Kevin, as you can see from his photos also is masterful at using his basic appearance to fully utilize all the talents at his disposal.
Please feel free to contact Kevin directly if you have information to share on getting things published.
Meet Kevin Driscoll.
I pulled the string and he spoke. As a young boy growing up in Nebraska, I wrote a letter to Santa and received my Jerry Mahoney ventriloquist puppet. I watched the television shows of the fifties and saw Edger Bergen with Charlie McCarthy, Paul Winchell with Jerry Mahoney, Sheri Lewis with Lamb Chop, and many other popular ventriloquists on the Ed Sullivan Show.
Life moved on and I got involved in my high tech career and music. I was always impressed with any ventriloquist on TV and loved the puppet on “SOAP” with the young Billy Crystal. Whenever the ventriloquist Jeff Dunham came to the Boston area, I took my son to every performance.
Probably one of the most asked questions we get is, “What is more effective – Moving Eyebrows or Blinking Eyes?”
The answer is not that simple. Each has its place in showing human emotion. Moving Eyebrows can show 1) Surprise, 2) Shock, 3) Awe, 4) Disgust, among other things. They can also be used as a form of flirtatiousness (if wiggled at a pretty girl). They can be used to express an
“I don’t understand what you are saying”. They can show a state of confusion.
Concentrate through today at the way you use your own eyebrows in everyday speech and human interactions. Make your own list of the number of times that you find your own eyebrows being manipulated on your face in a conversation with others and each of the emotions that come from the movement. You will be amazed at the amount of time that you use your own eyebrows in a day. It can be everything from sympathy expressed at the passing of someone you know , to “What did you just accuse me of”?