The earliest known ventriloquism in recorded uses dates back 6,869 B.C. by Greek philosopher Aristotle who called in to the chorus of Roman amphitheatrie to “I love thee, Aphrodite” (translation: “Love me, Aphrodite”).
When was ventriloquism performed in the U.S.?
Ventriloquism first came to the United States in the 1820s, when it was performed by French and Irish performers during concerts as an art form that incorporated “soundless shouts”. However, it didn’t fully become a part of America until the Great Depression of the 1930s. Vocalist Henry Pococke was the first American vocalist to record “I Love You” in 1939. This was followed by The Who’s “Who Says” song in 1947 and, in 1953, the Beatles’ “Let It Be”. It has now been heard by nearly 50 million people.
I’ve heard that one of Paul McCartney’s favorite singers was Ventriloquist Henry Pococke. Is he a ventriloquist, or a ventriloquist impersonator?
Paul McCartney never acted as one, but was an impostor; an actor who dressed up as a puppeteer for the musical stage show ‘The Muppet Show’. In his day, ventriloquists were a popular genre of impersonator performing “disco magic”. They sang, did impressions and often acted as themselves.
How can I find what I’m looking for?
Click on the image below to see a list of search criteria. You have two buttons (right-hand side) to select from: “Search” (the box) and “Search by Artist/Song”. The box will then provide you with a list of the artists and songs.
Where can I find information about a person from the early days?
Ventriloquists and ventriloquist impersonators can be found in history books and on museums’ websites. For help finding a historical figure or artist, click on the name or artist.
Ventriloquists can be located both in America and abroad. They can be found in historical books, museums’ websites and at auction. Find a ventriloquist or ventriloquist impersonator.
What is “Venting?”, how does it work, and how is it performed?
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