I have been asked many times about combining other allied arts (magic, juggling, puppetry, etc.) with ventriloquism. Is this something that’s acceptable? My answer: yes!
Now before I give you the wrong impression, ventriloquism is definitely strong enough to stand by itself. It doesn’t need to be propped up with other art forms. In fact, over the years I have seen many performers go from a variety type show to a strictly vent act to great effect. However, if you are a magician who wants to incorporate some ventriloquism in your act, that is perfectly fine. Same thing applies for a puppeteer.
I’ve seen many different combinations with ventriloquism, but I think the two strongest are MAGIC and PUPPETRY. For whatever reason they seem to work smoothly together…to compliment one another. My late friend Col. Bill Boley even wrote a book on the subject called “Ventrilo-Magic” and it was a wonderful little publication. Bill described many different magic props that could be worked one-handed (the other hand manipulating the vent figure or puppet), and it demonstrated anything from the wilting flower to sawing the figure in two.
If you are interested in combining magic with vent (if you are doing magic currently..) take inventory of what items that you have and see how you can incorporate a puppet with it. The puppeteer can also take advantage of ventriloquism as an added bonus to a great show to make it even greater. The sky’s the limit… use your imagination to make new combinations work for YOU!