Back to reality after visiting the realm of Ventriloquism at the 2014 Vent Convention. It was great to see friends and fellow peers as well as meet some new ones.
Almost from the first moment I became a ventriloquist people were telling me it was a dying art. From what I could see last weekend it is far from drawing its last breath, in fact there is a new generation of "voice tossers" that seem ready to carry the torch.
I gave a rather detailed lecture on the physiology of ventriloquism and the voice during the week. I ended it with part of a talk I give on Imagination. I got a lot of nice compliments on the lecture and everyone seemed to agree they enjoyed the Imagination talk as much as the "how does it work" section.
I am an evangelist for the idea of Imagination. It seems to me that with all the advancements of technology we have forgotten the importance of imagination. Apps on an iPhone seem to do the impossible, so you rarely see a kid without one. But because we have access to the product of someone elses imagination does that exercise our own? I don't think so. After all, the very app or toy that kids enjoy today was first created from someone's imagination.
I grew up in a time when I could spend hours watching rain drops in a puddle. Admittedly I did not have the extensive availability to toys that kids do today, but I was not impoverished. I distinctly remember a time in Abernathy, Texas when, as a five year old, watching rain drops hit a puddle just outside my bedroom window one morning. At the impact of a droplet, the puddle seemed to rise from a level surface and expose a small explosion on the watery stage. To me it looked like small members of a choir standing to deliver their musical contribution to an unheard song. I could envision the refracted drop as a conical choir robe with the round head of a small singer rising up from the water's surface in random order to deliver a musical solo. I can still remember that moment and these jumping choir members standing for their individual solos.
I am not saying we should go back to the Stone Age and make children play with rocks but we need to encourage them to use the greatest force on earth... Imagination. Nothing has been done that was not imagined first.
I am blessed from having a Mother who had incredible imagination. She did not know at the time she was not only preparing me for my ultimate career, but a life time of excitement and joy.
Albert Einstein said, "imagination is more important than knowledge". Can't we teach that important ability along with math and science in our schools. But it seems like the first thing that is cut from a school budget are programs for the arts. When will we acknowledge that Albert Einstein was right.
As you were,