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Wanlu
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Manila, Philippines
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I use a lot of stock jokes...

I also had Ony profesioanlly write a script for me...

Then I mix the entire thing up and develop an act I'm comfortable with.

But it does not end there...one must continue to add more materials.

I read joke books and convert some jokes into a vent conversation...I listen to jokes in the radio and when I hear something I can use, I write it down and check if I can use it in the act.

Just like everyone here, when I was starting out, I practice everyday in front of the mirror and the camera. Sometimes, I practice in an actual gig Smile I mean it's not a vent gig but a magic show but I insert a vent routine just to practice the new act. The client did not pay for the vent act...so it comes as a bonus so even if I bomb, it was free Smile At least that's how I started in vent Smile

Now I do have a vent act...and clients actually book me as a vent...how cool is that? Smile I still practise almost everyday...specially when a new figure or puppet arrives. I'm now practising with my new baby puppet Smile He's not an Axtell cry baby....but this baby also cries Smile different method used,basic method actually... will show video soon.

Thanks for the nice thread Bob and Ony and everyone Smile

Now somebody post a thread about actual manipulation...

Wanlu
"The Old Path"
www.angdatingdaan.org

Wanlu's Affordable Puppets
http://wanlu.net/ventpuppets.html

Wanlu and his Puppets
http://wanlu.net
Wanlu
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Manila, Philippines
3058 Posts

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In the tradition of off topics Smile

I'm joining a TV talent contest on Monday...it's ala AGT Smile

So far 3 vents have been in the show and all lost... Smile

I was asked several times before to join but declined because I felt that the judging system is questionable.

But...now...I think I want to try it. If I lose, I'm the 4th vent to lose. If I win, I'm the 1st vent to win Smile

I'll try using my Poyner figure.

Now back to the topic:

I will use a routine I have been doing since I started doing ventriloquism two years ago Smile I only have 1 1/2 minutes to impress the judges...

Wanlu
"The Old Path"
www.angdatingdaan.org

Wanlu's Affordable Puppets
http://wanlu.net/ventpuppets.html

Wanlu and his Puppets
http://wanlu.net
tacrowl
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Maryland
1633 Posts

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Quote:
On 2009-02-24 09:22, tacrowl wrote:
If you see a situation - do the entire community a favor by finding out the facts before saying anything. Even if just asking the "offender" (who would probably be embarrassed if it is stolen) or pointing it out to the "originator" or people you felt were wronged.


Apparently that part of my earlier post was lost. PLEASE do not PUBLICLY question integrity unless you are POSITIVE something is stolen material. Sure it looks bad. Ronn & Jeff - famous & well known, Sylvia, pro, but not at the same level of success. That doesn't mean the routines are stolen. The only way to know for certain is to talk to the people involved.

The Internet is wide open. Sylvia,Jeff and/or Ronn may read these posts at some point. A potential client of theirs could read that and start asking questions - innuendo builds and can cause issues.

We do not know the answer to who did what. It is possible that these people met at a convention or on the road and were talking. The ideas could have spawned from conversations - could be permissions granted (in either direction), parallel thinking or could be theft. WE DO NOT KNOW. But before you bring something up publicly - find out from the source. It is easy.
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

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Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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I also have to say don't forget as vents, we SEE more vents than the general public and so we do some routines come up more than once.

It is the same in magic. Magicians watch other magicians, and so similar or same routines all the time.

How much does the public notice this?

I am not saying stealing is OK but if you watch a lot of vents you will see borrowing, adapting, and paallel thinking.

I find sometimes the more unique your character, the more unique your material.

Even my big show closer started as a consultation with David Pitts about a routine he does, but has evolved into our own bit - Horton wants to leave me and be a game show host. Lots of audience participation as contestants and lots of laughs and "ad libbing"
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
tacrowl
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Maryland
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Thank you Neale. You can easily see how rumors can start and be spread. For example, we currently know you collaborated with David on your Game Show, and Steve Petra on the eggs - but someone who didn't know that, could wrongly assume it was being used without permission.

That is why it is so important to ask the source before questioning integrity or making accusations.

And no, not everyone is going to be posting where or how they developed or got their material - so I think giving the benefit of the doubt is correct and if it bothers you - then ask them - not others.
Tom
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

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Ony Carcamo
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Manila, PHILIPPINES
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Tom and others,

Just to clarify...

NEVER did I question PUBLICLY the integrity of Jeff and Sylvia. I was just stating a fact that I did see a video of them using the same line/joke.

I guess NEVER did Colyn also question PUBLICLY the integrity of Ronn and Sylvia. He was just also stating a fact that he saw the videos.

No one can question a fact. NEVER did we accuse anybody of anything.

Please read and re-read my and Colyn's post above again.

It's not good to publicly "guess" our intentions were when we posted a fact.

Thnks,
Ony
Ony Carcamo
PHILIPPINES

www.onycarcamo.com
tacrowl
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Maryland
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Apologies Ony & Colin - I didn't mean to insult either of you.

I just feel by mentioning the names of performers with similar routines, in a public forum, it CAN create a negative impression of the act people MAY believe is copying. Right or wrong. The truth is, we don't know the story behind why the acts are similar (or even word-for-word) - and the only way to find out is to ask the act(s) involved.

With the popularity of YouTube - it is easy to see that there are plenty of acts that have similarities, and others that seem to copy outright. That is one of the reasons this thread on developing material is important.

Again, Ony, Colin, I'm truly sorry. I did not mean to offend.
Tom
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

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Ony Carcamo
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No problem, Tom.

And thanks for apologizing privately, too!

No let's go back to this interesting thread...
Ony Carcamo
PHILIPPINES

www.onycarcamo.com
ColinDymond
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Gloucestershire, England
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No worries Tom.
I did think about whether to mention names or not, for all I know they worked on the script together, I was curious to see what anybody else might know.
You tube is a double edge sword, it gives lots of people the chance to see your work with the risck that they might copy it but it also shows origional material that people can then say "I've seen that" so we all have to be a bit more creative.
Colin
http://www.aceofdiamonds.co.uk
ColinDymond
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Gloucestershire, England
675 Posts

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Back to being creative!
I just got my Dan Payes old man from Wanlu, via Dan.
Wow! he's my first hard figure and there's so much to do. mouth, eyes, eyebrows and head and arm manipulation. I haven't even got a name for him yet!
I'm having fun, he's a great character and it's falling into place but any one have any tips for operating my first "real" vent figure?
Colin
http://www.aceofdiamonds.co.uk
Ony Carcamo
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Manila, PHILIPPINES
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Colin,

The vent instructional video of Paul WInchell is among the best you can get if you want to learn proper figure manipulation. Another good resource is "Manipulating Your Dummy" video of Steve Taylor.

Operating hard figures is so different than that of soft puppets. The second video I stated teaches both.
Ony Carcamo
PHILIPPINES

www.onycarcamo.com
Matt_24
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I agree with ONY. That is exactly what I was going to say....and everytime you watch it you'll learn something new - or reinforce something you forgot. Paul Winchell video is truly the only one you'll ever need.

Also - buy DVDs of the greats, or watch them on YOUTUBE. Study their lines, expresions, reactions. Have fun!
ColinDymond
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Gloucestershire, England
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I'm gonna dive in the deep end tonight. I'm going to audition the Dan Payes figure, infact it works that he's going to audition me to see if I'm good enough for him! I've adapted some lines from Arthur Worsley, after all the talk of being original!!!
Servante
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Couple of thoughts:

I have a file in my computer into which I put lines that come into my head, jokes someone sent me on the internet, exchanges of dialogue I hear in the street, etc.
They sit in there...sometimes for years...and I start making links when I need new material.

These are never lines from other vent scripts.

But there is one exception:
I started as a magician and ventriloquist at the age of four...picking up money at birthday parties and church Christmas parties (Never my own church!)...and Paul Winchell was a strong early influence.
Jerry used to call Paul a "phony ventrikalist," and Winchell couldn't get him to pronounce the word right.
I put together a bit of my own back then that I still use...wherein one of my figures uses the initial pronunciation...I try to get him to pronounce it correctly, going through the word rapid fire syllable by sylabble, and he still can't get it right...then I go to another word that we try...and finally, there's a joke payoff that refers back to the beginning.
It's not a steal from Winchell...though the original inspiration was from him with that pronunciation.


As far as the character design business:

I bought a "grumpy man" vent figure head from a craftsman in Buenos Aires. He has face shape and expression in common with Walter and Mr. H., but not much else.
I built a body for him and absolutely HAD to cross the arms. It goes with the expression, y'know?
I haven't used him yet, but I'm beginning to write material (I make a decent living as a playwright, so writing material comes naturally). I own a couple of Dunham's DVD's, but I am being careful not to go back and watch them for fear I will find a line that is just too good not to use.

I'm not sure, in other words, where the line may be drawn. Now, you could say that this character, whom I have named "Cooter Mudge," might never exist without the others...and that may be true. I'm not sure what the original builder had in mind, though. I could ask him, I guess, as I stay in touch with him. I'd be surprised, though, if he knew about Walter or Mr. H.
Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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When I got my old man character, I made a point of getting a less grumpy face and NOT folding the arms just so there wouldn't be the inevitable comparison to Jeff and Walter.

I have tried to stay away from the angry old man personality, and have gone with just an old guy who says he's too old to work and too broke to quit. He "works" for me caring for my Critter puppets.

He loves to tell exaggerated stories, has a bit of a memory problem, and is forever losing things....hey sounds a lot like me Smile
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
Wanlu
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Manila, Philippines
3058 Posts

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Quote:
On 2009-02-24 22:15, Wanlu wrote:
In the tradition of off topics Smile

I'm joining a TV talent contest on Monday...it's ala AGT Smile

So far 3 vents have been in the show and all lost... Smile

I was asked several times before to join but declined because I felt that the judging system is questionable.

But...now...I think I want to try it. If I lose, I'm the 4th vent to lose. If I win, I'm the 1st vent to win Smile

I'll try using my Poyner figure.


Wanlu


I won two consecutive episodes Smile both recorded today Smile

"Thanks be to God for all His unspeakable gifts"

Wanlu
"The Old Path"
www.angdatingdaan.org

Wanlu's Affordable Puppets
http://wanlu.net/ventpuppets.html

Wanlu and his Puppets
http://wanlu.net
Bob Baker
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Wow! You go get 'em!

Congratulations. Terry better start looking over his shoulder. Footsteps comin'!

Bob
tacrowl
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Maryland
1633 Posts

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From the DVD thread:
Quote:
On 2009-03-02 16:23, Neale Bacon wrote:
I want to order Kimmo's because I have seen part of his Frog Prince on Youtube.

This goes back to adapting material - Kimmo does Frog Prince, which he adapted from Steve Taylor who adpated it from (I believe) Clifford Guest.

When doing a fairy tale which would be clearly in public domain, is it stealing to put your own spin on the telling of it?

Some of Andy Griffith's old records of him telling "southern" versions of things is much the same.


You answered that yourself Neale - your own spin. If you were copying word for word or even most of the routine - then I'd either buy the original or get permission. If you are taking the story of a fairy tale, not reading from a published version, it should be considered public domain. By giving it your own adaptation - I'd consider it yours.
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

ComedyVentriloquist.com

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Kyle^Ravin
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I slammed my head against
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Is it just me or is the grumpy old man character suddenly very popular amongst ventriloquists. In fact, I have considered owning one but I'm never able to pull off a good voice. I'm only good in the high pitched squeeky voices.
Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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I have an old man but deliverately stayed away from the grumpy guy. I think grumpy guys have always been around in comedy, though.

My old man is not grumpy, but just old, tired, forgetful etc.
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
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