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Topic: Check Out The Skeleton Man!
Message: Posted by: foolsnobody (Sep 4, 2005 02:51PM)
You street guys know this performer?

Check it out! Love it when he checks his tips...

http://scottrope.typepad.com/scott_rope/files/Skeleton_Man.wmv
Message: Posted by: Gideon Sylvan (Sep 4, 2005 03:25PM)
That guy is awesome!
Message: Posted by: Jim Wilder (Sep 4, 2005 03:31PM)
A friend of mine sent me this.
That guy is great.
I have shown it to a couple of people. I assume this guy is somewhere in Europe.
Message: Posted by: Gideon Sylvan (Sep 4, 2005 04:00PM)
That could be great for ventriloquists too.
Message: Posted by: flimnar (Sep 4, 2005 05:04PM)
Very clever--something that could have been goofy is, when done so well, terrific entertainment. Great!

Flimnar
Message: Posted by: Steve V (Sep 4, 2005 05:41PM)
The popular guesses are either Barcelona or New Orleans.
Steve V
Message: Posted by: Chance (Sep 6, 2005 02:25PM)
That is the Ramblas, Barcelona. That guy is certainly a lot better than when I first saw him, which was about 8 years ago.
Message: Posted by: bropaul (Sep 6, 2005 03:16PM)
Great bit! The last guy I saw with a puppet was in Colorado and he would have a lady lay on the ground and then dand on her belly. At the end he would have to grab the puppet off of her because it would start humping her leg.

Very funny... I miss that guy.
Message: Posted by: wally (Sep 15, 2005 12:31PM)
I would love to add the dancing skeleton to my family shows. where can I buy this. help please.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Sep 15, 2005 06:55PM)
You probably have to carve your own. BTW the guy is doing a great job with it.
Message: Posted by: RicHeka (Sep 15, 2005 07:14PM)
This looks so cool,I might make this a Winter project.There is site on Google that teaches this.(How to carve{mold}one).It is a huge amount of work.I do have some experience working with plastics etc.So I may give it a whirl. All the best. Rich
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Sep 16, 2005 04:01AM)
To be honest, that's his. I wouldn't touch it. Even though he's in Barcelona and it's doubtful anyone is going to realize you're stealing someone else's material, it should be enough that YOU know!

If I were to be inspired by this, I would get a different marronette figure and find a different song.

I I were to choose to "steal" something from the routine, it would be the crying at the hat! That's just too perfect. (My daughter said if she saw the puppet doing that, she'd have dropped in some change just for that!
Message: Posted by: Euangelion (Sep 16, 2005 10:05AM)
Love the tipping "The Hat" section. Honestly, the best marionette puppeting I have ever seen done. And my hometown has a professional puppet theater.
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Sep 16, 2005 10:44PM)
[quote]
On 2005-09-15 20:14, PaleoMagi wrote:
This looks so cool,I might make this a Winter project.There is site on Google that teaches this.(How to carve{mold}one).It is a huge amount of work.I do have some experience working with plastics etc.So I may give it a whirl. All the best. Rich
[/quote]

If you don't mind, can you PM me the Googled site you are refering to? I build marionettes, and would like to look at what you found.

I am partially done with a disjointed skeleton (his head, arms and legs come off and rejoin the torso during the act). My skeleton's skull it molded paper mache... I began by sculpting the skull from clay, and cast a negative in plaster. Then the actual marionette head was made by layering glue-soaked paper strips into this mold. The body, torso and limbs are made from Crayola Model Magic Compound formed around wire armatures.

~michael
Message: Posted by: twistedace (Sep 17, 2005 01:09PM)
Wow. I love it. I showed that to so many people and the reactions are amazing. I would love to see something like that live. I see too much magic...that was just FUN!!!!
Message: Posted by: Mario Morris (Sep 19, 2005 02:05PM)
Can any one post a link of it in a diffrent format. I am struggerling to veiw it?
Mario
Message: Posted by: ChristianR (Sep 20, 2005 07:44PM)
Check out Dunningers Complete Encyclopedia of Magic, I found one at the library, very old and its like a scetch book of magic. In the Puppets Section (189 in hardcover) it has plans for a dancing skeleton :)
Message: Posted by: jasonmiller (Sep 25, 2005 12:08PM)
Wow... That was some of the best puppeting I've seen. Thanks for sharing that.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Oct 4, 2005 03:08PM)
You can find some of the old Pelham 'disjointed Skeletons' around...sometimes on eBay. I used one on the street in the mid 60's and they are great litle puppets.
Do a Google for Pelham Puppets. Head rises off body and arms and legs come off body as well.

That vid though was really choice performing. With that little act you wouldn't need more than that litle bone head to make your take. Thanks for the link!

Michael...let's collaborate! I'll sculpt you some heads and hands and stuff. :)

The Pelham is kinda small...here's a nice one:
http://www.dragonwings.net/SkeletonMarionette.htm


D
Message: Posted by: drwilson (Oct 4, 2005 03:21PM)
That is some outstanding puppetry!

Now that Doug is talking about making something, all I can think of is a singin', dancin' Chupacabra doing tejano, or, for a cheap shot, "Tequila:"

http://www.jokaroo.com/ecards/funny/tequilasong.html

Yours,

Paul
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Oct 4, 2005 04:41PM)
Now your talkin' Doc...(by the way...I do comical sculpts too...not just icky...
:) )

I could make a fortune in Mexico!...well...somebody could.
Message: Posted by: Zack (Oct 5, 2005 01:58AM)
Those skeletons are standard. They sell them in Hispanic areas around halloween. I think they're some kind of folk tradition.

Hollywood toys carries them.
Message: Posted by: vernon (Oct 5, 2005 06:54AM)
And this is why I don't want (difficult to stop...) anyone videotaping my show...loads of peole get to see it if that's the case and I don't get tipped.Its not on...I know of many performers who get the folks videoing to stop (in a nice way...as bad karma affects the hat...and after alls said and done that's THE big reason a lot of us busk)as those that tape don't normally pay. And why should someone be able to walk away with a video of a performance...unless the perfomer has allowed it.Just a question...did the videoer of this skeleton A)Get permission and B) Tip the hat...Now Vids have been shown here by performers of their own performance...which is okay, but not for someone else to do without A and B...Sorry just a wee rant there...
Vernon
AKA
James James
Message: Posted by: MagiUlysses (Oct 5, 2005 08:02AM)
Greetings and Salutations vernon,

There's nothing wrong with politely asking a videographer to stop taping, and I understand your point completely; however, based on my more than 10 years experience as a news photographer, your ability to make someone stop taping you at a public venue is limited at best. If you perform in public you are inviting attention, which in turn invites cameras and video cameras, which leaves you with only a few options: 1.) stop performing, 2.) ignore the camera and carry on with your show, 3.) ask them politely to stop filming, or 4.) (fill in your own creative solution, 5.) etc.

My point, which I'm not making quickly enough is, you can ask them to stop, you can try to guilt trip them into tossing a tenner into you hat, but if you're performing in a public place -- which while busking you usually are -- there's little you can do to stop them from taping you wihtout stopping your show. I'm pointing this out for those who may not be familiar with the laws regarding photography/videography in public places, and "public place" has been interpreted pretty widely.

Joe in KC
Message: Posted by: drwilson (Oct 5, 2005 12:16PM)
Great post, Joe. The only thing that you left out is that anyone who videotapes a busker without tipping is reborn as a skeleton puppet! That's why you can get them so cheap these days.

Yours,

Paul
Message: Posted by: MagiUlysses (Oct 5, 2005 01:06PM)
Greetings and Salutations,

I was curious about those low costs ... Thanks for the reminder Doc! :)

Joe in KC
Message: Posted by: vernon (Oct 5, 2005 01:19PM)
Hi MagicUlysses, you are quite right. I have found that at first I got really peturbed and tried a variety of tactics to get them to pay...and at times just plainly asked them to stop taping...the problem with that is there always is someone taping (well 95% of the time...due to working in a specific tourist area...)So my way of dealing with it now is to make some joke(turn repeatedly to face camera and say'is your camera broke...is your camera broke...is your camera broke'...ad nauseum)It gets a laugh.As you say noght can be done, but I do find it galling, but let it ride...
Good call though.
Regards
James James aka
Vernon
Message: Posted by: dmasterfunk17 (Oct 6, 2005 06:49PM)
When I went to Barcelona, there were plenty of Street performers. This beats them all.
Message: Posted by: sunnydolan (Oct 6, 2005 07:47PM)
WOW that guy was very good. I would like to meet him and get some pointers on where to start. I'm sure something like that would be very amusing busking!!
Message: Posted by: Joe Russell (Oct 7, 2005 06:26PM)
Very funny, it almost took on a life of its own a couple of times youd swear it was real
Message: Posted by: mrunge (Oct 22, 2005 10:11PM)
That is a great act! It is just another example for me of the thought that goes into an act to get the idea, timing, music, etc...to all come together and look as smooth as this does. I'm off to practice some more!
Message: Posted by: Mario Morris (Oct 27, 2005 12:56PM)
Finally got to see it!

I loved the way he worked his hat.

Mario
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Oct 31, 2005 04:48AM)
Yeah, my daughter watched the clip with me and said when the puppet cried at the hat that would have prompted her to put in a dollar right there!
Message: Posted by: RicHeka (Nov 30, 2005 11:46AM)
I just put an Awesome Skeleton Marionette up for sale in 'Tricks and Effects for Sale'.Check it out.

Rich
Message: Posted by: magicguy67 (Nov 30, 2005 03:35PM)
Awesome that's all I have to say.
Message: Posted by: RicHeka (Dec 2, 2005 09:29PM)
Custom Made Dancing Marionette with unique "flyaway arms legs and head feature".This can be a Buskers Hat filler! Reduced to $165.00 PP USA.Check TRICKS AND EFFECTS FOR SALE for details.PM me for a Photo.
Message: Posted by: Steve V (Dec 3, 2005 12:37AM)
Can you post a linky thingy to a photo?
Steve V
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Dec 3, 2005 10:24AM)
Y'know, having seen that act, I could never bring myself to do it. Even if the guy was in Barcalona and has no chance of ever coming up to Providence and catching me work. Simple fact is it's his act and I couldn't do it as well.
Message: Posted by: Harry Murphy (Dec 3, 2005 11:06AM)
Well you know that this guy (good as he is!) is not the first to do a dancing skeleton act. I got to see the great Percy Press in Blackpool England perform a dancing skeleton back in the late 60’s. Percy had performed his routine off and on for over 5 decades (it had the fly away head, arms, legs, etc). Many of the elements of this sweet act seem to be right from Percy’s.

You already know that Doug Higley performed a version back in the 70’s. I used to use my little ol’ Pelham (mentioned by Doug above) to draw crowds back the late 70’s too. I know of several other puppeteers/performers that have used the dancing skeleton on the street. Heck, after watching this I have pulled out my ol’ Pelham and started playing with it again! Not that I plan to perform it, but may just entertain house quests from time to time.

What I am saying is that if you could build a nice routine and maybe even thrown in your own original bits and moves (not to mention pick your own music) and not be stepping on anyone’s toes!
Message: Posted by: David Bilan (Dec 3, 2005 12:28PM)
Harry,

Good points. The trick is to make your own act. Using a skeleton is not the same as using a trademarked Purple Dinosaur. Don't think you'd get that big a reaction of of B****y any way.

David
Message: Posted by: Harry Murphy (Dec 3, 2005 03:19PM)
LOL!!! David!! That gave me a chuckle! I have an old dragon marionette in a box somewhere. It is a great puppet with folding and unfolding wings that can flap when open. It can breath smoke (if I wanted to smoke a cigarette while working the thing (how about that for risking your life for art!. I think that I may just dig it out and paint it purple! LOL!!!
Message: Posted by: mota (Dec 4, 2005 08:39PM)
Doug is working on something interesting along these lines...check it out.

http://grindshow.com/GrindShow/Higley_Marionettes.html
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Dec 5, 2005 06:43PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-03 11:24, mandrake01 wrote:
Y'know, having seen that act, I could never bring myself to do it. Even if the guy was in Barcalona and has no chance of ever coming up to Providence and catching me work. Simple fact is it's his act and I couldn't do it as well.
[/quote]

Ah, but if you use your own unique dance moves for the puppet, (Not copying his, of course)and your own unique music choice, and then it would become your act.

A lot of folks use similar puppets, but it's what you personaly make the puppet say and do that separates your act from the other guy's.
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Dec 7, 2005 01:16PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-03 12:06, Harry Murphy wrote:
Well you know that this guy (good as he is!) is not the first to do a dancing skeleton act. I got to see the great Percy Press in Blackpool England perform a dancing skeleton back in the late 60’s. Percy had performed his routine off and on for over 5 decades (it had the fly away head, arms, legs, etc). Many of the elements of this sweet act seem to be right from Percy’s.

You already know that Doug Higley performed a version back in the 70’s. I used to use my little ol’ Pelham (mentioned by Doug above) to draw crowds back the late 70’s too. I know of several other puppeteers/performers that have used the dancing skeleton on the street. Heck, after watching this I have pulled out my ol’ Pelham and started playing with it again! Not that I plan to perform it, but may just entertain house quests from time to time.

What I am saying is that if you could build a nice routine and maybe even thrown in your own original bits and moves (not to mention pick your own music) and not be stepping on anyone’s toes!


[/quote]

That's a good point. I just remember the guy who did the "Timmy the Toilet Paper" presenting it at a magic meeting and having everyone come up and go; "OOh, that was neat! I can't wait to put that in my act!"

Yes, if you can take the basic premise and make it your own by going in a different direction, go with it!
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Dec 10, 2005 07:40AM)
That's the only ethical way to go about it.
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Dec 10, 2005 10:34AM)
Too bad too many magicians think "ethics" is a word in the dictionary!
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Dec 11, 2005 11:01AM)
Lots of 'things' afoot. Harry, you might be interested in MarionetteShow.com

I'll be putting up the latest ideas there and most interesting (to me anyway) will be the Street Theater setup I came up with. I designed it to have a VERY small 'footprint' and be a single haul (one trip!) from the vehicle to the location and still be self contained for a full days/nights performances with multiple Marionettes. A buddy of mine who is a pro cabinet maker is building the prototype of cardboard...(I'll have photos) and then we'll adjust the measurements etc. and build the real deal. It will be very simple to build and (I HOPE!) easy to work and give a nice professional touch to a street corner act. I'll share the plans once I know it works as I envision it.

I'm building my own marionettes these days but I did notice that eBay is flooded with Pelhams. Cheap too.

Not wanting to correct Harry but the record...but I used the Skeleton dancer in the 60's...if I had originally said 70's it was a mistake....I was doing GrindShow stuff in the 70's. :)


AS to doing that guys act...like has been said...Skeleton Dancers have been around since the 1700's!!!! Maybe earlier. What I liked about his performance was the bending over the hat. Very cute and it wouldn't be stealing if adopted by other performers. Just an adoption of a move...who knows where he got it. It's like my Ape that I put on the site http://MarionetteShow.com ...I designed it to do very effective 'knuckle walks' (see photos)...I haven't seen others do that...but it wouldn't bother me if somebody else used the idea to advance their Hat. Gotta have fun eh?

Doug