Animatronic Puppets

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Postby Jolly Roger » 05/10/09 04:40 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lc6MF-wOk_Y

What a Disaster! I feel sorry for Steve Axtell that
some dreadful performer can destroy the reputation of one of his animatronic puppets in front of millions of TV viewers. He should be ashamed!

He even told the judges it was an animatronic puppet. That is rather like doing a Zombie routine, and showing them that it was all done with a piece of wire.
JR
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Postby Jolly Roger » 05/10/09 05:01 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bcji1KL3 ... r_embedded

Here is another dreadful video. I can hardly understand a word that the performer or the monkey are saying.

Steve is a friend, and I am not critisizing the puppets...........just the performers. I use several Axtell regular puppets in my shows, and they are terrific! JR
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Postby Dave Andrews » 05/12/09 06:41 PM

Roger, Louis has far from destroyed anything, despite being manipulated by the backstage staff prior to his appearance and his spot being deftly and deceptively edited for when the programme went out on air.
Nor is he a 'dreadful performer'.

Knee jerk reactions don't become you, Roger, you are normally more thoughtful than that.

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Postby Jolly Roger » 05/12/09 07:33 PM

Maybe it was a knee jerk reaction, Dave. However, what I saw was dreadful. I can only base my opinion on what I saw.....and it was not pretty! I understand the show, and the way his act was edited. However, even in that short clip, he screwed it up big time IMHO. I know you have one of these puppets, as you told me at Kidabra, but I am in no way critisising the puppet. I am a big Steve Axtell fan. However, even from the bit I saw, he was obviously under-rehearsed, and should therefore not have entered the auditions.

Maybe I was wrong to say he was a dreadful performer. What I should have said was that performance was dreadful. If you know him to be a good performer outside of that clip, I am sure you are right. I feel sorry for Steve, because I think it is a shame that the first time one of his puppets is seen on British TV is in a performance like that.

Believe me, I know a lot about these shows. I was on ATV's "New Faces" in 1973, as well as "Pot of Gold" on Australian television. Both had judges critiquing my act, but I will admit this show is more vicious. But my point is that this chap must have known that. He should never have said he was a ventriloquist, and then denied it. He should never have said he was using an animatronic puppet. What would have been clever is, when the judge said "that's a mechanical toy, isn't it?" he had responded with something like "Ofcourse he's not. He's real. Now you are upsetting him."

As for that other clip I showed.....well, I think tyhat speaks for itself!

Look forward to seeing you and Sally at Kidabra, Dave!! JR
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Postby Dave Andrews » 05/13/09 09:13 PM

Roger, apparently the 'highlight' of Louis that went out on TV had been edited to such an extent that it included footage of the judges that was taken from comments made during another act(s). The fact that they hack things around just for cheap laughs at the expense of the performer just shouldn't happen - but I suppose that what these initial shows (selling point for TV) are all about. Shame.

Yes, we are definitely looking forward to seeing your goodself and everyone else at Pigeon Forge. Take care, and don't forget my RR, please!

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Postby Jolly Roger » 05/14/09 12:42 AM

Interesting Dave!

"The fact that they hack things around just for cheap laughs at the expense of the performer just shouldn't happen"

As a performer, it goes without saying that I agree with this. However, if you are going to enter a competition like this, I would have thought you would know this. It is what it is. My friend John Kimmons(Kimmo) apparantly auditioned for this show, but he refused to do what they requested, and as a result his spot was not included which was likely a blessing!

Incidentally, Dave, how are you getting on with your Toucan? Is it in the act yet? If you have a video, I would love to see it.
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Postby Dave Andrews » 05/14/09 09:18 PM

'Tetley' is a work in progress, Roger.
I have used it for a couple of 'meet and greets' that I did for free, and it goes down a treat - this is the main reason I bought it.
I can't imagine using it in a birthday party show - a whole different approach would be needed, and another (big!) suitcase.

We must have a chat about it at Kidabra, and I will update you on my (slow) progress.

Believe me, it is not the easy route to entertainment that some people (in the Green Room) seem to think. I vent with it, I don't use an MP3 track, and timing is altogether different - interesting when using a handheld puppet and the remote Toucan at the same time, though!!

As soon as I have a video, I will let you know.

Best wishes,

Dave
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