lazarusHi.  I'm Lazarus, John's dummy.

Although, I don't know why they call me the dummy.  He is the one who stands up in front of people and talks to himself. And he even loses the argument.

People often ask me how I got started doing ventriloquism with John.  Well, actually, John started doing this when he was in college.  Another student at Asbury was a ventriloquist and offered to teach other students how to do it.   So about 30 people signed up to meet 10 times over 10 weeks to learn ventriloquism.   John was one of the the two who finished.

The next summer he worked for the Salvation Army at Camp Allegheny with kids from the inner city and did a show every day.  After a few days of everyone laughing at him because his lips were moving so much, he decided to practice more.  He practiced a lot, but he's still not that good - I catch his lips moving all the time.

At that time, his main dummy was Sylvester the Cat.  He has since moved on to his own television show on Saturday mornings.  In 1986, when John and Beth were getting ready to go to live in Africa, the kids at Indian Springs Campmeeting in Georgia raised money to buy me!  So, I joined John in 1986 and went with him to Africa.

When we got to Africa, I did not have a name.  John and Beth were learning Swahili their first six months in Kenya, and one of their Swahili teachers was named Lazarus.  I was named in honor of him!  Their other teacher was named Zephyr, and John named his other new puppet after him.

Where did I come from?  Well, the Bible says that we can all trace our ancestors to Noah's ark.  I can, too.  My ancestors were Noah's ark!   Actually, I was created by a ventriloquist figure maker named Craig Lovik.  In his catalogue, I am called a "Knee Pal."  At that time, Craig sold his figures through Maher Studios of Ventriloquism in Littleton Colorado, and that is where John bought me.  

Where to I get all my great lines?  Well, a lot of them come from Harry Allen in Daytona Beach.  Harry is one of the owners of Daytona Magic , a great little magic shop.  He has written a series of books called "Slight of Tongue" (highly recommended) with zillions of one liners and snappy comebacks.   Another source for materials are the ventriloquism dialogue books published by Maher Studios.  But mostly, they come from John's slightly warped sense of humor.  Oh, and some of it comes from Calvin and Hobbes cartoons, and various Far Side cartoons.

That's about all there is to tell about me.  Go to John's ventriloquism links page for lots of links to various ventriloquism resources on the internet.

Or if you'd like, you can read our famous "Jonah and the Whale" dialogue.  It's right here on the site!