I am amazed to find many ventriloquists using toy puppets that belong to other performers in their programs. I can’t begin to count the number of Shari Lewis’ “Lambchop” puppets I have seen professionals using , along with characters that belong to other well known vents. I’m afraid many in the audience, including children, are saying under their breaths, “We have a puppet just like that one at home!”.
Now if you are a young person (child) getting started this is reasonable. You are just beginning and maybe this is the first puppet you could afford and one you feel comfortable with. Hopefully you will graduate up to a more professional figure or puppet as you mature. But to keep relying on a toy doesn’t show growth..it shows the willingness to copy.
I have mentioned this before to try to enhance a stock puppet by dressing it differently, or adding glasses, a wig ,or something to make it unique to the ventriloquist. Puppets are more reasonable price-wise than ever and there really isn’t a good reason vents should not graduate up to a professional model.
I think of it as magicians using a toy magic set to do shows. Maybe the tricks are the same, but the audience feels it is not a professional act. My only thought for bringing his to light is to help our vent universe grow professionally.
First impressions are important! Don’t be a copier..be an originator! Find something that can be uniquely yours and go for it!
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