Hospital Ventriloquism...

Question: Can you put some information on your blog on performing ventriloquism in hospitals. I'm exploring the possibilities at the moment, but have no idea where to start. I love your blog, I'm checking it daily. Best regards,Walter van der Hoeven, From The Netherlands.
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Answer: While I have one book of dialogues written for this purpose*, I have little else. So I promised Walter I'd give readers a chance to send their comments and/or suggestions. I'll compile them and post them here. Contact me here.

* Cheerful Visits, $6.00 postpaid.


  1. In my opinion, a good hospital show is puppetry and ventriloquy as an aid to the patient, whether child or adult. Keep it simple. Show how the puppet works, the basic movements and how to ventriloquize, let them turn the head, pull the strings, and make it talk.

  2. Anonymous1/27/2010

    Dear Mr. Van der Hoeven, You will be well received in hospitals, nursing homes, and such. If you can write up a few short bits having to do with hospital staff, food, and other conditions that are witty, so much the better, otherwise, just do your regular routines. Children love animal puppets or youngster puppets and the adults will enjoy almost any kind of puppet. I have acquired a few soft type doctor and nurse puppets for just such occasions, but you could simply get a smock or a toy doctor set with stethoscope , so your puppet can pretend to be a nurse or doctor. Don't go to long with the show, maybe 30 miutes or so. People and patients will probbly come and go during your performance, so don't be upset by that, just keep rolling. Possibly two short sessions would also work as some patient's routines might otherwise keep them from seeing your work. Also, some patients won't seem to respond at all, don't worry about that it's part of being in a hospital. You may see some really sad sights as well, steele yourself for that and don't mind if folks cough, call out, or even make strange noises, that's all part of it. Be ready to improvise or wise crack if you are interrupted. Have your own small amp system with mike as you will usually work in a fairly medium sized room. If you sit, be up a little higher than a normal size chair, use a bar stool or folding high chair, or stand with or withougt a puppet platform of some sort.
    The hospital & nursing home, staff will really support you and aid you more often than not in helping you bring your equipment up and back to your vehicle. Mostly, these will be unpaid performances but you could check with the hospital staff to see if they have a budget for entertainment. After a few shows you will feel right at home and believe me, you will be greately appreciated.
    Good Luck! Joe "Capt.Joe" Radle :o)

  3. Anonymous1/28/2010

    Thank you all, this information is very helpfull.
    I will keep you informed on my progress.
    Best regards,
    Walter van der Hoeven