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The Voice Is The Mirror Of The Mind

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

May 18, 2012

Comments (9)

Mature woman looking at her face in a mirror, reflectionCan good acting camouflage how you really feel about a script or your depth of knowledge?

In a time where very few people are fooled by advertising and marketing, many voice talent who don't agree with the content of a script or understand its meaning think they can still convince an audience to believe otherwise.

Curious to learn more?

Hear from one of Chicago's top producers in today's VOX Daily.

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Food For Thought

I happened to watch a video featuring a voice talent who recently got to live their dream job for a day. In the video, something quite significant was said that I wanted to share with you to consider. This quote comes from Dave Leffel who is a Sound Designer, Mixer, and Casting Director at BAM Studios in Chicago.

Dave Leffel of BAM Studios in Chicago"The voice is the mirror of the mind. If you're nervous, it's going to show. If you don't like what you're saying, it's going to show. If you're not necessarily understanding the script, it's going to show. It's all going to come through in your voice."

- Dave Leffel

What Do You Think?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

Best wishes,

Stephanie

iStockphoto.com©Stefano Lunardi

Related Topics: Chicago


Comments


    So true, Stephanie! This has to be why so often 'Believable' is in the job specification.
    For sure, there are folks who have an intrinsically sincere way of talking and can grace any product/production with it, and there are actors who know how to make a silk purse out of a literary sow's ear.
    But still there is a need for honesty in art and if the subject matter, or its presentation, causes the performer to grind their teeth the audience will know - perhaps more in the subtle medium of voice-only than on stage. What do people think?

    Posted by:

      This is pretty much true. A well written script helps tremendously, and that is where the Copywriters expertise comes into play. Not much is discussed, I've noticed, about Copywriters and the importance of such skills. Often times we VO talents "struggle" with the written word as it is presented to us. Our editing of such is important many times, but many times ignored. But after all, the VO talent is the one who has to make the script sound good, whether it is good or not.

      Posted by:

        Stephanie, I agree "The Voice Is The Mirror Of The Mind". Digging a little deeper, I would also add "The Mind Is The Mirror Of The Soul". Where I get so frustrated in my radio sales role in a regional market is when the final product often TELLS the story doesn't SELL it ! I believe it was the great Don LaFontaine who said it was all to do with interpreting what the words were REALLY saying. Either because some announcers don't care, don't know 'how' or simply can't see the real sell in the message (despite a well crafted script) too often the key words, phrasing, pausing, inflections etc. are just glossed over. I guess it proves again there is often a world of difference between an announcer rattling off a radio script to time to that of an empathetic voice over talent who can see, understand and SELL the message with credibility and passion. Regards, IAN in Oz.

        Posted by:
        • IAN WRIGHT
        • May 20, 2012 1:56 AM

          I agree wholeheartedly with what you're saying. I just created a demo for myself and had the guts to listen to it, only after someone said it sounded authentic. I liked what I heard, and I did understand the material. I also had fun creating the demo.

          Posted by:

            I agree and that is why I have to really believe in what I'm saying or I will not do or accept the job. That's just me and I've always done it that way from my first VO job some 40 years ago!

            Posted by:
            • Lehua Pekelo-Stearns
            • May 22, 2012 1:41 PM

              I don't agree with this statement. If a voice over is talented, like an actor or actress, they can mask the fact they are nervous, or don't believe in the script. Now if they don't understand what they are reading, then perhaps that would come through, but a good voice talent (such as myself) can act with their voice and not show these things. Even simply putting a smile on your face puts it in your voice, so there is no reason these other obstacles couldn't be overcome.

              Posted by:
              • Lexie Smith
              • May 24, 2012 9:42 AM

                I feel that if you're thinking, while talking... you're not communicating. You're playing pong in your mind. lol.

                I used to think so much about what I was going to say, how, and in what order.. that all that mind chatter.... messed up the lips!
                breathing has also been the best friend to allowing the soul to come through you wholly. Listening.. also the BFF.

                I always used the kinda mental game.. imagine you're talking to one person.... and what you're talking about... is so very important to you,, and you care so much for them,,. you much share.
                then it is truth... because sharing is caring. :O)
                no matter what the script says.. if you mentally so this.. the mind chatter stops... and you can complete the process smoothly and comfortably.

                Posted by:
                • liz
                • May 27, 2012 4:36 PM

                  ABSOLUTELY true.. I know of a TV actor who goes to the medical dictionary and works out the definitions of words until he understands them, whenever he plays a doctor!

                  Needless to say, many others are in awe of how "authentic" and "convincing" he sounds.. They wonder HOW he gets that 'authority' in his voice. They think it's some magical intangible.

                  No it's not - it's KNOWING what you are talking about!

                  I've also done this with a singer who got first place in a contest, beating out 300 other singers.. and they were GOOD. Her first place was in the 'artistic' [meaning interpretation] category] She placed in third in 'technical'..

                  I had her go through the lyric, word by word, and determine EXACTLY what the definition and/or concept of the word was for her.. Then SPEAK it to the wall, THEN sing it.

                  She blew everyone away..

                  Try it.. It works!

                  Posted by:

                    When I was a Program Director in radio, I posted one of my maxims on the wall in the Production Room: "Good production begins with good copy." The Sales Manager saw it and tore it down, but it is still true. Poorly-writen copy is a bear to work with.

                    Posted by:
                    • Glen
                    • May 28, 2012 11:45 PM

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