You’ve heard the phrase “practice..practice..practice” from many experts. But if you are like most of us, you find it often difficult to buckle down and actually get to it. Therefore, I say it is important to practice but it is also important to set a schedule and then have the motivation to stick to it.
Let’s face it, practicing isn’t always fun. You usually have no audience; you are by yourself and are set up in front of a mirror or are using a video camera to play back your routine. It’s repetitive and often boring…unless you make it fun for yourself.
As a practice tip, I would suggest breaking your written routine down into thirds. By doing this you can work on it a segment at a time and it’s easier to learn when it’s segmented. The old adage “inch by inch, it’a a chinch! Yard by yard, it’s hard!” really comes into play when you look at it that way.
Also set up a practice area where you won’t be distracted or bothered away from friends and family. Constant disruptions will not allow you to hone your lines into something that can be easily learned. Moving into a basement or a back bedroom or some place away is preferred.
Don’t make it a marathon of practicing. Have water nearby to keep your voice lubricated. And break your practice sessions into segments of 15-30 minutes and then take a break. Over practicing for long periods of time will hurt your vocal chords and make your throat raw. I also find it’s best to practice when you are fresh. For me it’s a morning session that does me the most good, but the choice is yours. Only you know your most productive time of the day.
Make a commitment and stick to it to practice often. The better the sessions, the better chance you have of being he ventriloquist you want to be!
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Great advise Mark. I have had to make a schedule for practice like you said. I am so busy with other things, work related, that I have to do my best to stick to a schedule.