Question:  I am new to ventriloquism ... and wondering how to prevent my throat from moving when I am working with my puppet.  I am certain there must be a way as I have watched other females on You Tube and there appears to be no throat movement. I am planning to go onto children's wards with my puppet so I am very determined to learn but don't want to form bad habits early on.
*  *  *  *  *  *
From Mr.D:  Throat movement is a result of the movement of the tongue.  It is not a vocal issue.  Obviously, the ventriloquist needs an active tongue!   You'll not want to hear this, but I have yet to hear from anyone who has a remedy for actually eliminating throat movement when speaking in either the ventriloquist voice (or normal voice).  I have heard of several ways of trying to hide the movement.  Such as:
1) Keep your head down as much as possible.
2) Wear turtle necks.
3) Grow a beard. 
My advice?  Work to prepare and present an act that is highly entertaining.  Give your vent figure "life", comedy and action.  People will be so busy watching your pal's movements and laughing at your act, they won't even notice any throat movement you might have.
If anyone reading this has comments or suggestions, they are welcome.


  1. Anonymous12/31/2012

    The Great Lester stressed belly talking, which means taking the pressure off of the voice box and that adam's apple that moves if pressure is from the throat. It is true Lester wore a high neck starched collar to hide throat movement, but even without it movement was only slight because he pushed up using the diaphragm and stomach muscles which one is supposed to do both in song and in speech. Speak to the person on the back row and voice will carry very well. Speaking from the belly will also save or reduce hoarse throat. LeeDean

  2. I find that the nasal "drone" voice produces less throat movement for me than others. Lower voices are really hard for me to manage, including lip control, but practice helps. I think higher voices engage the tongue higher up, so there is less noticeable movement. (the drone also needs more pressure from the diaphragm, so that agrees with Lee Dean's comment.) Although, I agree that the falsetto voice is tricky, but for other reasons, mainly clarity--err on the side of clarity over worrying about how much your adam's apple is moving around.

    That said, Clinton's advice to concentrate on the entertainment value of the act is the best. Part of that should be consideration of your clothing. I would suggest to dress "nice." --whatever you think that is. (both you AND your partner.) Turtlenecks are sort of a dated fashion item, so I don't think you should wear a turtle neck unless that is somehow a fitting costume for your show. At a minimum consider a collared shirt. I notice that Jeff Dunham will wear t-shirts; even under a blazer they show off a lot of neck and you can see his throat moving around. (yes, even him...of course, he's a huge star and can do what he wants.)