This is something that I have already shared with my friends on Facebook that I am now going to share with bloggers on Word Press. It is about combining my mental health management with an artistic ability. I have never shared this talent of mine with anyone until a friend suggested that I exploit it after it made her laugh.
It was called ventriloquism and it has raised hysterics with my friends on Facebook and at university. It has also been a boon for my mental health where I can now be more openly talking to people. With a puppet doing ventriloquism you can release your inner thoughts and say things you probably wouldn’t be comfortable saying to real people. It helps me to release positive mental energy and create a voice that tells me what I need to be healthy and happy. Just like Nina Conti who uses ventriloquism to help her with mental issues regarding her health.
Many years before I became interested in university, archery, autism issues or politics I was an avid fan of science fiction and theatre. When I was in my teens I aspired to become a performer of some kind and a creative writer. I had some really good artistic skills which started off in an amateurish way. First I got interested in acting, then creative writing, and then music.
But I made a career out of it. I was painfully shy and socially awkward. With these traits in my personality I couldn’t even make a living out of it. I found myself with these skills that I wasn’t able to show off that well. But I did have some ambitions with my performance skills and I was determined to use them in some way.
One time I got a work experience placement at a nice theatre in Hornchurch, Essex called the Queen’s Theatre. This place was famous for hosting a repertory company of actor musicians called Cut to the Chase. It’s an old style of in house entertainment where a theatre keeps a company of performers with a standardized set of skills. The talent that I found at this place was really good.
These people of Cut to the Chase became my friends and I have stayed in touch with them ever since. Each of them plays at least two musical instruments, sings, acts and dances plus whatever other talent they have. This led me to think differently about how to take my artistic abilities. Instead of focusing on one talent make the most of all your abilities and use them to make yourself a wonderful and multi-skilled person that you can bring to any of your other passions.
One passionate that I combined my love of the theatre with is science fiction. For years I was a big fan boy of Doctor Who, Thunderbirds, Red Dwarf, Star Wars, etc. One talent that I became interested in very recently was ventriloquism. The art of throwing your voice to another object. In Red Dwarf there was a piece of sideshow act that caught my attention. A killer penguin called Mr Fibble. He featured in an episode called ‘Quarantine’ where Arnold Rimmer went on a killing spree after contracting a holovirus dressed in a red and white checked dress. Mr Flibble was such a hit with Red Dwarf fans there was demand for a replica penguin puppet and eventually they made one. I snapped my own up like an excited kid and held onto him like a precious companion.
Years later when I became interested in ventriloquism I got my Mr Flibble puppet out of the loft and started using him to practice. Maybe one day I could make an act of my ventriloquism by giving a new lease of life to classic Sci-Fi sideshow characters. Until then here is me and Mr Flibble introducing ourselves to the world.
I suppose some of you from the Red Dwarf fan community will be wondering if this is a good idea. Well I have given Mr Flibble some characterisation as well as a voice. He is a crazy psycho still but he also has a charming a positive attitude to help me see the bright side of mental health. There is also something real about him as well. Penguins are known for being sexually frustrated as well, hence the dirty jokes I get from him. One time he hypnotised me to be Mr Bean with a horny manner!
People on the spectrum can benefit greatly from a creative art like this. It keeps you in good health. It channels your thoughts into a creature where you could be thinking bad humour. Pick up your hand and start talking to it.