Will ventriloquism in 2020 be any different than in the past?
It can be if you make a concentrated effort to improve yourself during the coming year.
1. Start by making a list.
What improvements to your ventriloquism would you like to make during 2020? Create a list. Maybe you want to improve your lip control. Perhaps you want to write or obtain funnier ventriloquist scripts. How about improving your stage presence? Or manipulation skills?
If your list contains get a new puppet, put that at the bottom. I know it will upset some of my favorite puppet makers like Barry Gordemer, Mary Ann & Melissa Taylor, Steve & JET at the Dummy Shoppe, Pavlov’s and many more … the list is here.
But a new puppet does nothing to improve your act. It may look better than your old puppet, but remember that Ronn Lucas keeps people entertained with a sock he removes from his foot.
Skills should always come before the puppet.
2. Develop your plan of action.
Creating a list does nothing if you don’t act upon it. Figure out your most important goals for 2020 and create a pathway to get there.
If it is writing funnier scripts, plan time to immerse yourself in comedy. Watch comedy specials, talk with funny friends, pick up your puppet and see what ideas come about.
Then plan time to write. And edit. And try the new material. (Work it into a conversation to see if whoever you are talking to laughs.) Remember, you are writing dialogues, so it should sound natural to whomever you are talking with.
If your main goal is puppet manipulation, get some solid information to study.
If you already have courses, books or videos you haven’t watched, take the time to do so. When you have already spent the money you would be crazy not to take advantage of the materials.
If you haven’t invested in the areas you wish to improve, do so. I see people try new things and put them on FaceBook or Youtube looking for feedback. In the day and age of “you can’t hurt anyone’s feelings by telling the truth” you get positive comments and “keep up the good work!” That gets you no closer to becoming better. It does become a way for people to continue being bad and not realizing it.
A good ventriloquist is good for all ventriloquists. Learn to be one!
3. Take Action.
Wasn’t this number 2? No. Number 2 was develop your plan of action. Now you actually have to do something. If you plan time to write, as in the example above, but just don’t feel like it, you can’t reach your goals.
4. Review & Correct Course.
Plan a time at the end of each quarter to review your goals and see how you are doing. Are things working? If not, decide on how to change course and solve the problem.
Too often, we don’t look at how “where we are” will get us to “where we want to be.”
Make your ventriloquism in 2020 count!