Brief Personal View
Terri Rogers is considered to be, one of the greatest ventriloquist acts of all time. She worked all the best venues around the world and was one of the top nightclub acts in the UK. Many will remember her appearances on TV programmes, such as The Wheeltappers and Shunters Club and The Good Old Days.
After a difficult childhood, she blossomed into a beautiful girl, who in her teenage years became a baton twirling champion.
Her lively personality and quick wit drew her towards a career in show business.
Shorty Harris, the doll made for her by the famed Vent Doll Maker, Mr Insull, was her sidekick. Terri’s on stage persona was that of a genteel lady, while her little friend Shorty, was cheeky and very rude. Anyone who was lucky enough to see her perform live, will tell you how funny she was.
Terri was also an excellent magician, who invented tricks and wrote several magic books. She gave occasional lectures but didn’t perform magic for the public. Her life partner was the magician, writer and ventriloquist Valentine (Val) Andrews. Val was a very funny man himself, who invented tricks and jokes for many magicians including Tommy Cooper.
Terri and Val were close family friends of The Pages. We spent Christmases, birthdays and all other celebrations together.
To spend time in their company was always a joy. They were generous, kind and very funny.
Terri didn’t drive a car and I occasionally drove her to a gig, if her regular driver was on holiday. I was always surprised at how nervous she was before she went on. But once she was on stage, she was magnificent. I saw her do a few of her famous ‘stag’ shows (men only, no holds barred). They were a complete riot, outrageously rude, with the whole audience crying with laughter.
Terri died in 1999 after a series of strokes. Christmas was never the same without her.
For anyone who doesn’t know, the name Shorty Harris is rude London cockney rhyming slang for a short person!
TERRI ROGERS IN PERFORMANCE
Recorded at the Jack Hughes Convention, Kings Lynne, Norfolk – Terri performs her act as known, introduced by Pat Page. Sound quality leaves a great deal to be desired (it was acoustically a very live venue) – so not ideal technically, but the performance more than makes up for it.
Click on the titles below to download.
Please leave your memories, comments and ideas below.