Sitting in my seat, silently mouthing the words on the script, knowing that my turn at the mic is next, and starting to tremble - tremble like my Chihuahua, Lola, when the garbage truck stops at our house. This is how I spent many of my first voice over classes.
I’ve been a performer most of my life, so I managed those first nervous months under the familiar guise of entertainer, which meant that I focused on character voices - no matter what script I was reading. If it was a commercial, I chose a character voice, if it was a narration, same thing. A character voice gave me the false sense of being hidden and safe behind something that wasn’t actually me.
One day in a class with a talent agent, the agent stopped me mid-script and said “please, just read it as yourself, don’t do a character voice”.
I hesitated. I did NOT want to do it. I felt so vulnerable. I thought people wouldn't want to hear me. But... I tried it as myself. No character. No hiding. And, to my surprise, no nerves.
And that was the day that my voice acting took off! I tried something uncomfortable which opened up a desire to explore different classes in all the genres of voice over as the real me. Trying, failing, succeeding and trying again all became part of the process and helped me find my strengths, reinforced my talent, and gave me the courage to commit to my choices. Now I bring me to a character, rather than the other way around. And if any character I portray needs to tremble from nervousness, I’ve so got it.
Inspired by the three-week intensive some of our students recently completed, Danny spoke with Voice One Vocal Health instructor Julia Norton who has over 25 years of experience teaching people how to have a free and healthy voice.
An Interview with Top Dialect Coach Doug Honorof
Voice One offers a beginning improv class that takes you through the the basic rules of improv (believe it or not, there are rules!) through games and scenes. Laura Derry creates a fun and safe space for you to succeed and fail and you'll laugh and learn a lot!
We are premiering a new class called Storytelling in VO. The class takes place over two Thursdays: January 31st and February 7th from 6:30pm-9:30pm taught by Sally. The class will cover the short story format, with scripts from commercials, corporate narration, literature, and children’s books.