21/07/08 The First Stages: That will hopefully lead to my voice over career

Tommorrow morning, I'm going to ring up 'Matinee Sound And Vision', and ask them if they know of any more contacts in the UK for voice artists. I want to let them know how enthusiastic and desperate I am to do this, but obviously not in a freaky way, I don't want to scare them! :) I'm sure I'm not the only person on this site who feels it, but there's a real burning desire/impatience to go out there and make things happen. I saw a quote on someone's voice over page that was really good. It went something like "You have to run in order to stand still." Ever since, I thought of it and it really does make sense. If you want something so badly, you have to run (work for) it, in order to obtain the luxury of (getting the job) standing still.

The next thing I'm going to do is double check that The Blue Snowball microphone works with Windows Vista, because there have been some speculation in the past that it would only work on Macs and XP. If anybody does know anything for certain, it would be really great if you could let me know. Thanks in advance for anyone who posts.

As well as checking the validity of this microphone, I will be hopefully tearing open my A1Vox training package. I've seen the prices, and they are rather, well, high to say the least but I've researched lots about voice over classes and training, and I was ready to gasp, so it's alright. However, if £110 an hour is not by any means something I want to do, then please let me know, as I'm getting really excited about going to train there. I think they do demos there, and that could be something I could take from the studio, and transfer the files, uploading them to my page on voiceoveruniverse.com.

How have others got their demos done? Also, when you get ready to record on the day, I was wondering what material they usually give you. I had a basic demo done years and years ago, but it was only about two minutes, and it consisted of scripts I'd brought in.

I was thinking of having something like this on my page:

D E M O :

1. Animation/Celebrities (I can do some mean impressions of people, but will this be of any use to agents/clients, or should I just keep the first one and make up lots of lively characters?) Animation is the one area I wish to achieve (it's the cherry on the top of the cake if you will)
2. Advertisements/promo
3. Narration/audio books (I'm a podcaster so I think this section would be essential to show what I can do (or can't as the case may be!) Loll.
4. Radio drama (Script reading, showing I can do that.)

This would I think be enough, and each demo would be about 50 seconds. Does that sound about right?

Will keep you posted,

Rachel

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Comment by Rachel Brooker on July 21, 2008 at 11:16am
Thanks so much for your advice, James. :) I'm so happy that people are coming round to look at my blog, it means a lot. Yes, I really like that quote. Oh I will do, and that sounds really cool. I'd heard of that booklet before actually, 'Bernard Shaw' I'm sure he bases his work mostly in radio, though I'm not sure. I'm getting all excited because I'm gaining so much information from this site, the people I work with, and everything. Voice overs would truly be the best job in Hollywood!!

Rachel
Comment by James Clamp on July 21, 2008 at 10:58am
Hey Rachel, the "run to stand still in life" is a quote my father always told me while growing up at home. It's also about how the world is continually changing and moving forward and you'll get left behind if you don't keep up. So pleased it gave you food for thought.

As regards contacts in the UK, go to www.voiceovercontacts.co.uk - and buy (i think it's about GBP 15) the booklet - it's filled with agencies, tv stations, radio stations, ad agencies, cd's, production houses, etc and it's tailored to voice actors specifically telling you how to approach these people and what to say. The booklet was compiled by a certain Mr. Osborne and the website is run by a great VO coach in the UK called Bernard Shaw.

James
Comment by Rachel Brooker on July 21, 2008 at 8:39am
I can't tell you how happy I was to recieve this sort of reply when I checked my page this afternoon. Thanks so much for all of your advice, Mike. It's really cool that you thought it was the biggest display of public desire, because that's exactly what I wished for it to be, so I can communicate to everyone how passionate I am about doing this. I would love to email you, as you've been v helpful, and I'm incredibly new to all of this. :)

That said, I was nervous, but have now rang 'A1 Vox training' and their rates are adding up to the large, but understandable sum of £730, including a training day and a demo added afterwards. As I would be doing both, I'll be getting 10% off!! My next call I'm awaiting from someone who works at Matinee. She's really nice, and I am going to ask her about how to go about getting an agent.

Will keep you posted, thanks again,

Rachel
Comment by Mike Elmore on July 21, 2008 at 7:14am
I saw a quote on someone's voice over page that was really good. It went something like "You have to run in order to stand still."
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another good one is "Do what you have always done...and you will get what you've always gotten"
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The next thing I'm going to do is double check that The Blue Snowball microphone works with Windows Vista, because there have been some speculation in the past that it would only work on Macs and XP. If anybody does know anything for certain, it would be really great if you could let me know.
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I just read a few things at Amazon.com and wired.com ....looks like you are right. They haven't created an updated driver as of yet that makes using it with Vista, certain. People are struggling all over the place with this it seems. Keep in mind though...this Snowball is not the only mic is this price range that you might want to consider. Go to Guitar Center and check out a bunch in the 100 to 150 range....maybe even find some on sale.
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Also, when you get ready to record on the day, I was wondering what material they usually give you. I had a basic demo done years and years ago, but it was only about two minutes, and it consisted of scripts I'd brought in.
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First of all....you will have the scripts long before the "day" you are recording. Part of this process is to have the scripts and be practicing/receiving coaching on them before the session. And...."it was only about 2 minutes"...great....and this one shouldn't be any longer that 2 minutes either. In fact closer to 1 minute...(assuming you are talking about a Commercial, promo or narration demo)
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D E M O :

1. Animation/Celebrities (I can do some mean impressions of people, but will this be of any use to agents/clients, or should I just keep the first one and make up lots of lively characters?) Animation is the one area I wish to achieve (it's the cherry on the top of the cake if you will)
2. Advertisements/promo
3. Narration/audio books (I'm a podcaster so I think this section would be essential to show what I can do (or can't as the case may be!) Loll.
4. Radio drama (Script reading, showing I can do that.)
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OK. You got it right here....:50 is a good target. If/when you get an agent ....many of them require a "house reel" that they USUALLY request clock in at :60 and no more....(seems :50 would be acceptable to most)

Keep in mind each one of these 4 demos will cost money. Are you planning on making these yourself?? I always say "don't try this at home" if you are new.

OK....you enthusiasm is quite honestly the biggest PUBLIC display of desire I have even seen and quite frankly I am finding myself wanting to see the day you get to the point of at least having demos on your page....even A demo. If you want to email me off the board here.....I am willing to help you thru this demo process in certain areas.... Not to take the place of the great advice you can get on here....but a more personable approach IN ADDTN to posting on here and an ear to lend to your stuff or an eye for the scripts....etc....if you want the help....just send me a message from my page if you want a little help from time to time.....

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