RJ sent me an email and told me that he knew Ken Spencer. Since he was a friend with Mr Spencer I wrote back saying I would love to hear any stories that he may have of him and would certainly share same with everyone here on Ventriloquist Central.
RJ has been gracious enough to send in “installments” of his experiences with Ken Spencer. Today is the first of those installments.
Ventriloquist Figure Maker, Ken Spencer as Told by RJ
Yeah, I have a story or two; The reason I got involved with Ken was because, as a young ventriloquist, I was booked fairly frequently, using the standard toy ”Juro” Jerry Mahoney dummies; But people would often mention this other kid ventriloquist in town, who had a ”PROFESSIONAL” figure.
It began to bug me, so I tracked him down. When he took his figure out of the suitcase, I immediately knew that this was a game-changer. My envy was TOTAL! He gave me the maker’s name, Ken Spencer, WAY across town in Minneapolis.
I wrote to Mr. Spencer, and he replied with several photo cards of himself, along with a bio, AND a photographic card featuring a line-up of the figures he carved.
I WAS IN HEAVEN! One problem. The cost of one of his figures BEGAN at almost $400! [approximately 1 million dollars in today’s world] Not really, but it sure felt like it to a naive 12-year-old.
Next installment; RJ visits Ken Spencer’s home and workshop. Stay tuned.
Dan Willinger is a ventriloquism enthusiast and ventriloquist figure collector. He has been collecting for over 25 years. He created the Ventriloquist Central Collection. It now has over 100 ventriloquist figures and over 50 of them are Frank Marshall figures. Because of his love for the art of ventriloquism, Mr. Willinger created the website Ventriloquist Central. For more information about the website, go to: http://www.ventriloquistcentral.com
Copyright 2010 by Dan Willinger
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