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Comment by Jean Zarzour - LIPSCHTICK! on January 8, 2010 at 4:33pm
Happy New Year, Everyone!

In all these years I've been teaching Voice Acting classes (25 to date) there are a few "constants" that I felt were worth sharing if you are thinking of taking a voice acting class or producing a demo with me, or someone else for that matter. Visit www.findyourvoice-voiceactinginstitute.blogspot.com for more information about me and the classes I offer.

In my experience, people who are new to voice acting/voice over work have many misconceptions about the work, and therefore, can be prey to scam artists with empty promises. The most common misconception is that if you have a great voice, can read and speak English, then you can make a living in voice overs! How hard can it be for crying out loud?! Harder than you think.

Here is just some of What you should know before you study V-O!


Proper breathing techniques, vocal warm-ups, elocution exercises, body placement, copy interpretation skills, how to train you "ear", voice maintenance, home work exercises, studio/business etiquette, other resources for learning and everything in-between toward expanding your voice acting repertoire for a wide variety of "reads". Where marketing is concerned, you should learn the best marketing practices for your region. There are subtle differences in the way that artists in large markets like New York, Los Angeles & Chicago do things from the way artists in smaller markets like Ohio, PA & Michigan do things when it comes to agency representation, self marketing, home studios, websites and demo production. That's just the tip of the iceberg. If you are new to this work, a group class will offer much more than private coaching and it is much more affordable.

1. Any voice over training that is offered by phone! I don't mean telecasts or other media classes that only disseminate information. I mean sessions where you are reading copy and getting feedback from an instructor. They are out there. There are a dozen reasons why this is a bad idea, but mostly because a good instructor needs to see and correct how you breathe, use your body and facial muscles, while you work. Tension is the death of voice work. If I can't see it, I can't correct it.

2. Any Voice Over school visiting your town for 1 day, telling you that you have a great voice and can earn a living with only a few weeks of training. After that 1 day introductory class, you will have to get the rest of your training out of town and/or over the phone! They charge thousands of dollars which includes a full length demo that can't possibly compete in the real world with so little training. Not to mention that these demos entirely too long and contain little to no production sweetening (sound affects and music). I've heard these demos from students who come to my class after an agent told them that their demo won't cut it. This is no way for the novice voice actor to train.

Your demo is your calling card to the world. It tells producers that this is the very best you can do. You should never produce a demo until you have learned and practiced what the pros know about being a voice over artist. How long do you suppose they spent training? I can assure you, it was not just a few weeks and they didn't spend thousands of dollars to produce their demo.

A demo produced by any reputable producer in Cleveland or Pittsburgh should cost you no more than $600-$800. With www.findyourvoice-voiceactinginstitute.blogspot.com" target="_blank">Find Your Voice, that fee includes between 4-6 hours of preparation, rehearsal, recording session and post production revisions. If you take the time to do it right, know one will ever know that you are a newbie and you won't have to revise your demo for a few years.

3. Beware of an instructor who has only ever been a
Comment by Kris Keppeler on December 22, 2009 at 11:21pm
I need to make a narration and audio book demo. Can you recommend a coach and studio in the Portland, OR or Vancouver, B.C. area knowledgeable in this genre?
Comment by Yvette Stevenson on December 9, 2009 at 4:04pm
Hey Everybody! Just starting out and wanted to know are there any VO Coaches, training classes or workshops in the Boynton Beach, Florida area? I'm also close to Ft. Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Miami, Del Rey Beach, Palm Beach. Thanks1
Comment by Aaron Jones on November 21, 2009 at 10:02am
I am looking for VO coaches in the Wisconsin area.
Comment by Frank Cabanski on November 6, 2009 at 3:53pm
I have had a great experience with a coach for commercial VO, and have been looking for someone for voice acting coaching for cartoon, video game work and the like. Looks like Lani isn't offering coaching at this time. Does anyone know of a good voice coach for voice acting? I want to learn the ins and outs to improve voice acting and end with a killed demo.

I'm in Houston.
Comment by valerie smaldone on September 27, 2009 at 11:33pm
In addition to teaching a radio internet course at the School of Visual Arts, I coach voice over talent individually and will be teaching a voice over class in a school beginning in January.
Comment by DAVID ALDEN on September 25, 2009 at 3:44pm
Just thought I'd let you know that MYVOCOACH is having a PROMO VOICEOVER workshop on SATURDAY OCTOBER 10th from 10am-5pm... Don't miss it!! Go to www.MyVOCoach.com or call 530-50VOICE.

This class is HIGHLY recommended if you're at all serious about learning what it takes to work at the "primetime" level of promo voiceover! In fact, here's what a few of the VO Pros say about MyVOCoach...

"The VO coach to the best in the biz BY the best in the biz!!!" - JIM TASKER

"...if you're looking to move your Promo VO to Primetime, I encourage you to check out the MyVOCoach Promo Intensive workshop..." - JOE CIPRIANO

“MyVOCoach is one of those rare guys that somehow puts you at ease immediately, and is able to get you to peak performance level very quickly. He's the Zen master in the garden of VO. If you're considering a workshop with David or one-on-one coaching, I'd say DO it.” - STEW HERRERA
Comment by Kiff VandenHeuvel on September 25, 2009 at 3:03pm
I've had a couple workshops and a recent demo evaluation and retooling with Pat Fraley, and I can't recommend him enough. Booked work directly after both workshops by applying principles that he worked with us on. Highly recommended.
Comment by Cliff Zellman on September 4, 2009 at 8:31am
It's Newbie's Night again at the Dallas Voice Acting Meet Up Group. Go to www.meetup.com/voiceover for all the details. Join this dynamic group and learn all about this wonderful industry from the ground floor These events fill super fast, so please sign up for the waiting list! See ya there!
Comment by Izaki Shadrack on September 2, 2009 at 10:20pm
hey guys,

looking for a dialect coach, any help? Bilangual in Swahili and English. Main is Swahili.
Does not have to be a coach in person, but all is cool.

Thank you
Comment by Jennifer M.Dixon on August 24, 2009 at 10:37am
Lisa,. yes there are vo coaches in Detroit area . I went to Tom Force .He's a member here. I highly recommend him.
Comment by Xavier Paul on August 17, 2009 at 6:18pm
All of my voiceover students are signed with major agents/currently working in the industry as a resul tof studying with me/vo demo production. Website: http://coolvoiceradio.com
Podcast link:http://www.coolvoiceradio.com/mp3/Cool%20Voice%20Podcast%20Tempo%20.mp3
Comment by Lisa Thomas on August 11, 2009 at 10:26pm
Are there any VO coaches in the Detroit, MI area?

Comment by Wesley Hind on August 7, 2009 at 11:33am
I had a very good time recording my first VO demo with Keith Alan in Tampa at his 57thstreetmedia studio.I was comfortable and surprised myself. Being 65 and finding out I could still evoke the "actor's sense of drama,comedy and,of course,the famous "etcetera" mode,with Keith, was a major kick! I am curious,though,to know of any other talented VO gurus who might be lurking about in this Tampa Bay Area. Alo? Alo?
Comment by Ron Knight on August 6, 2009 at 7:40pm
I'm really only doing limited access VO retreats and Career Overhauls and makeovers. I still have my curriculums for the Leapfrog Technique and Career Study for the beginners, but really I'm focusing on those who have hit the plateau. Ah, the Plateau......
Just call me for micro-surgery... that's what most do...
Comment by Tracy Ann Johnson on August 6, 2009 at 6:56pm
Marla Kirban!!!!!

Comment by Marc Cashman on August 6, 2009 at 6:02pm
As long as everyone else is plugging their schedules, here's mine: I'm starting Fall V-O classes for all levels in Los Angeles on September 5, including a six-week course that was previously a one-day workshop: "Are You Ready For Your V-O Demo?" I'm also conducting two one-day workshops in NYC at Edge Studio on October 24th and 25th--Audiobooks on 10/24, with a guest director from Random House, and Videogames on 10/25, with a guest director from Hamsterball Studios. Contact me at cashcomm@earthlink.net with any questions. Hope you're all having a great summer!
Comment by Ed Mace on August 6, 2009 at 6:02pm
Any coaches in the RI area?
Comment by Bettye Zoller on July 28, 2009 at 10:12pm
Thank you to VU and Rick Zurek for the good vibes on VU. I appreciate you and all of you who comment on my posts. My community here is Bettye Zoller's Voiceover Central and we'd love to have you join our group. Membership is in the three digits now and growing. Join in. Find us under "groups" in the overhead bar.
Comment by Lani Minella on July 20, 2009 at 11:06pm
Here are the links to the classes, coaching and talent assessment. I'd encourage you to act fast as these will be very small classes offered one time only. Thanks

Private Coaching and Demo Evaluations


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