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Jim Powell


The Infamous yet Wonderful

Wireless Ear Prompter

by Jim Powell

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You have heard the producers and directors who have had ‘bad’ experiences with talent who say, "Yes! I can work with the ear prompter!" Because the results were not what the director expected, his response was, "I will never work again with another talent using an ear prompter."

These producers and directors are well founded in their assumptions and experience. Some people just can not use the ear prompter, and some talent are just inexperienced.

Imagine, trying to listen to yourself and then repeating every word that you say, in the same inflected manner that you spoke the words on tape the first time. It is not easy, but it is possible...with practice using the wireless ear prompter.                                                                   

I have worked with the ear prompter for more than seven years, and now, 90 percent of my on-camera work is with the prompter with very good results.    This is not to say that I began with those results. The first couple of years produced a lot of learning experiences.

Today though, depending on the complexity of the scene, I can usually record the script into the prompter, practice a couple of times and then produce the results that the director wants.

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w How does it work?

The wireless ear prompter consists of three items: the ear piece, the transmitter loop and a microcassette recorder.

The ear piece (2) looks much like a hearing aid, except it picks up an electromagnetic inductance and converts the energy into sound.

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