Updated: Jun 7, 2019
How having voiceover on a resume makes an actor stand out.
Looking to vamp up your resume and get more acting opportunities? Just...follow your voice!
Voiceover is an often overlooked but advantageous skill for any actor to have in their repertoire. Between commercial work, narration, and animated films and series - voiceover is coming more and more lucrative and therefore more important than ever for actors to be familiar with.
Still, there can be some confusion as to what exactly voiceover work entails or even - what exactly it is in the first place. If you're looking to get started with voiceover work, but are looking for more information, allow this to be a basic guide on where to begin:
FIRST: WHAT IS VOICEOVER?
Voiceover is a production technique where a voice that is used to speak at or for particular part or role. Voiceovers are commonly used in commercials, radio, TV, film, & even theatre.
USES OF VOICEOVER
Commercial Advertising - Probably the most commonly recognized form of voiceovers, commercial advertisers often employ actors to speak to consumers quickly & clearly about their product or service. If a commercial is successful enough, advertisers may employ a voiceover actor over & over as part of a company's brand. When consumers hear the same, familiar voice representing a product, it builds instant trust and credibility.
Character Voices - Another popular example of voice work are character voices, such as one might see in cartoons or other animated stories. Every uniquely drawn character needs an equally unique voice behind it -- in fact, many actors seek out these character voices to add variety to their portfolios.
Narration - Most people are familiar with narration in a documentary or fairy tale context, but narration can extend to many mediums: nonfiction films or TV series, podcasts, & even audiobooks use voiceover actors to keep the audience informed. Outside of nonfiction works, voiceover is a critical part of many movies (think Fight Club or Shawshank Redemption) and is necessary for moving the story forward.
News Reporting - Finally, your morning commute would probably be a lot different if you weren't able to tune into your favorite radio station & catch up on the news or traffic patterns. Many news channels use voiceovers to report on news that was taped earlier or segments that were edited beforehand. (Sometimes when you combine news reporting & narration, you get unforgettable moments like the 1938 Orson Welles recording of War of Worlds. Let's hope your voiceover projects don't start such a panic!)
FINDING VOICEOVER AUDITIONS
If you're represented by an agency, you can easily communicate to your agent that you'd be interested in being submitted for voiceover work. That's an easy way to break into the market & start auditioning.
Even if you don't have an agent, finding voiceover auditions are fairly similar. Sites like Backstage.com, Casting Networks, & Actors Access frequently send out voiceover breakdowns. Make sure you create a profile on those sites & that your settings include voiceover audition searches.
GETTING THE RIGHT TRAINING
So you've done the work, you've checked all the boxes, & now you're ready to audition. Make sure you're as prepared as possible by getting the right training. Training is the only way to get practice, make mistakes, & find your strengths.
BUILDING A REEL
Once you've booked a few gigs & have a decent body of work, you'll want to start building a reel - which is a collection of an actors work that can be shared with agents or casting in the hopes of booking future roles.
Having software like iMovie or Audacity is great for compiling a reel on your own, OR do some research & find editors that can compile your reel for you (although, you should expect to shell out some cash for their services.)
As opportunities for voiceover actors grow, it's becoming more important than ever to have voiceover training on your resume. Increase your job market & broaden your experiences. Get voiceover training today!
-The ATC Team
Based on your interest in this article, ATC has a WORKSHOP SUGGESTION:
Voiceover - This 4-week workshop will cover the basics of the world of voiceover. Jeff Lupetin, a 27-year voiceover veteran will show you how to create a marketable delivery using tone, pitch & tempo with actual commercial copy. For 9th Graders - Adults.