By Stephanie Ciccarelli
August 10, 2009
Do you need to have a voice hot enough to melt chocolate to do voice over?
What about a million dollar voice whose rich, luxurious timbre oozes cash?
While a pleasant, attractive, or otherwise unique voice is a definite plus, it isn't necessarily the quality of a voice that books... more often than not it's the interpretation of a script with the right delivery that finds its way to success.
The late Don LaFontaine, a giant among voice artists with a larger than life voice, would be the first person to tell you that contrary to popular belief the voice itself isn't the center of the voice over universe... it's the read.
Know what I mean?
To illustrate, someone with a voice that sounds commercially viable may not have the foggiest idea of how to read a script with authenticity, power, and emotion whereas someone with different vocal qualities who is able to read with purpose may get the booking due to how they interpreted the script.
Acting is at the very core of voice over, and that being said, the ability to act is integral to shaping a message for an intended audience in order to fulfill the prime objective or goal of the director.
Without purpose, nuance, context, and confidence, a voice over becomes merely a voice over, failing to embody the elements required to achieve the desired read which contributes greatly in meeting the wider vision of the project.
I think Don would wholeheartedly agree with what's been said in this article and I'm sure he'd want to add a little more to what is being said.
Given the opportunity, what he would also tell you is to let your voice take a backseat to your read.
Don't focus on vocal limitations or quirks because if you do, it will negatively affect your read, and as we've just discovered, it's all in the read.
Lastly, he'd encourage you to accept your voice as it is and use it to the best of your ability, and use it as a vehicle to communicate the objectives of the text.
Looking forward to hearing from you!
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