Twista might hold the Guinness World Record for fastest English-language rapper, but it turns out the Chicago native has another major skill, too.
In a post shared on his Instagram earlier this week, as seen above, Twista showcased his ventriloquism skills in a hilarious clip with a puppet named Groucho. Needless to say, the video attracted a lot of attention online, and even went viral on Twitter after Andrew Barber of Fake Shore Drive shared the clip.
Thankfully Pitchfork writer Alphonse Pierre has since spoken with Twista about how he got into ventriloquism, how he learned to do it, and what his puppet-based plans for the future are.
Twista explained in the interview that he was first interested in ventriloquism after he watched the 1978 horror film Magic, which stars Anthony Hopkins as a ventriloquist under the control of his thoroughly creepy dummy. "I would learn by watching television. I was into music so I would closely watch the puppeteer of Madame from Solid Gold and I also liked the Muppets on Sesame Street," he said. "Actually a dream of mine was to do voice overs for cartoons, but I really didn’t practice puppeteering much until I got older.”
He only really properly pursued his interest when his friend B Hype got him Groucho, the dummy seen in the clip above. "I want to be able to do a demonstration, speak sentences fluently without having my mouth move at all, and make it look like I’m really interacting with the puppet. I have my work cut out for me," he added. "My goal is to be able to make a puppet rap, but not like any rap—in the Twista style. I also want to use it to teach kids how to be safer: I could make educational videos about the universal safety rules and color coding, things that could help in a crisis."
As far as more immediate plans, he said he wants to get a tutor in the future and he’s already got his own puppet in the works. “I’m going to call him Lil Twista and we’re really going to go back and forth,” he said. “It’s costing me a couple thousand dollars, but I’m geeked.”
Read the fascinating look into Twista’s ventriloquism here.