One of the biggest pieces of advice I can give any aspiring ventriloquist is to “be prepared!” The Boy Scouts had it right when they adopted this adage. A prepared person is a confident person!

I learned that to be prepared takes a lot of the guess work out of things. I made it a rule to always gas up the car the night before a show. If something happened in the next day to make me late, I knew I wouldn’t have to take extra time away trying to find a gas station to fill up. I could get on the road and STAY on the road without any disruptions.

The same thing applies to packing your show and making an inventory of what you will be doing. I make a list of what I will be performing and then go over the list to make sure nothing was left out. When I get going I have the car ready, and the equipment with me that I need. It’s at this point I can concentrate on the show itself and not have to worry about last minute details that I forgot.

I also examine my characters to make sure what the audience is seeing is first rate. If something is dirty and needs to be cleaned (like a costume or jacket) I get it taken care of in advance. If a trunk needs some attention I try to make sure it looks presentable to my satisfaction. You see, I’m picky … but in a good way!

One thing I notice right away with performers is their shoes. If they are performing in scuffed, run down shoes it takes some of the shine away from the finished product, namely your act. Stand in front of a mirror and give yourself an extended look. Have your wife, husband, significant other, of family member or friend look your performing clothes over. Maybe you are missing a button, maybe something needs to be repaired. Take the time to fix it NOW!

Preparation should be on the minds of every good performer. Know you act, that’s for sure, but also know that all the extra little things make a huge difference. Now go WOW you audience!![divider_bar]divider[/divider_bar]

Mark gave a lecture on Comedy Writing For Kid Shows at the VH ConVENTion this morning. His audio book is now available for sale at Maher Studios. Click Here to find out more.

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