VAM 087 | Q & A Session 16 – Shadowing vs. Internships & A Day in the Life of a Voice Actor

VAM 087 | Q & A Session 16 – Shadowing vs. Internships & A Day in the Life of a Voice Actor

Welcome to episode 87 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In this episode, I continue answering questions from my podcast audience! For those who may not be as familiar with the podcast, in past episodes, I’ve given out a phone number where you can call in and leave me a question about voice acting as a voicemail. From time to time, I’ll pick the most relevant questions I receive and answer them here on the podcast.

For this round of Q & A, I answer questions from Justin from San Diego, CA and Tina from Chicago, IL.

Justin wants to know if it’s possible to shadow or apprentice under working voice actors in order to learn about the industry.

I understand and applaud the idea of apprenticeship. I think it can be far more educational to work with someone who actually makes a living in your field of interest than to simply study that career from a distance.

However, there are some unique challenges that arise from trying to shadow people who are working as voice actors, especially in the world of animation and video games. I explain those challenges in detail and offer an alternative that might be more productive: internships.
 

Tina wants to know what a normal schedule for a full-time voice actor would be on a daily basis.

Tina asks a great question. The problem is there is no simple answer. With most traditional professions where you are required to go to an office or some other place of work day after day, it is possible to describe what an average work day might be like. This is not the case with voice acting. Voice actors can have very inconsistent schedules, which makes it difficult to describe a “typical” workday for a voice actor.

While I don’t know if I can tell her what a typical voice actor’s day might be like, I can share with her how variable my schedule as a voice actor tends to be.

 

I hope you find the answers useful in your own voice acting endeavors!

 

If any of my listeners would like to call in with your own thoughts, thank you’s or questions, the number is:

323-696-2655.

Please don’t forget to include your first name and what city in the world you’re calling from. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #87 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 086 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 3

VAM 086 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 3

Welcome to episode 85 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

This is the third and final part of my interview with the wonderfully talented Scott Menville.

Scott is probably best known for his portrayal of Robin in the animated series Teen Titans and Teen Titans Go!, but Scott has been working both as a voice actor and an on-camera actor since he was 11 years old! Scott brings a wealth of experience to our discussion as well as an amazingly positive mindset, and I’m thrilled to have him on the podcast.

In this episode, Scott and I wrap up our discussion by talking about the times in voice acting when things didn’t seem to go our way. However, in the midst of such adversity, Scott and I both learned powerful lessons. Often you learn and grow more from your “so called” failures than your successes. After all, a failure is just an opportunity to learn something new on the way to your future success.

At the end of our interview, Scott was kind enough to share his advice for aspiring voice actors. His insights are useful and encouraging, and I’m sure you’ll enjoy them.

In the next episode, I’ll continue answering more questions from my listeners. For those of you who don’t know, I provide a call-in number where any of you can leave me a voicemail with your own thoughts, thank you’s or questions. Then, when it’s time for me to do a Q&A episode, I choose the most relevant questions and answer them for you here on the podcast. The call-in number is 323-696-2655. Please remember to state your first name and what city in the world you’re calling from before leaving your message. Thanks again for listening, and I’ll see you in the next episode!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #86 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 085 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 2

VAM 085 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 2

Welcome to episode 85 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In this episode I’m excited to present to you the second part of my interview with the wonderfully talented Scott Menville.

Scott is probably best known for his portrayal of Robin in the animated series Teen Titans and Teen Titans Go!, but Scott has been working both as a voice actor and an on-camera actor since he was 11 years old! Scott brings a wealth of experience to our discussion as well as an amazingly positive mindset, and I’m thrilled to have him on the podcast.

In the previous episode, Scott and I both emphasized how important it is to have passion for the career you decide to pursue. While this is true in almost every field, it is especially true in the world of voice acting where there are so many people who are deeply committed to becoming professionally competitive as voice actors.

In this episode, we explore exactly what steps Scott took once he made the decision to pursue voice acting, not just as a hobby, but as his vocation. Here’s a hint: improvisational acting training played a vital role in Scott’s development as an artist. Improv still informs Scott’s performances today, as he is often called upon to use his improvisational skills during recording sessions! Hearing about his experiences, and the experience of other actors using improv to explore new possibilities in the booth, is both enlightening and inspiring! I’m sure you’ll enjoy it!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #85 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 084 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 1

VAM 084 | Interview with Scott Menville, Part 1

Welcome to episode 84 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In this episode I’m excited to present to you the first part of my interview with the wonderfully talented Scott Menville.

Scott is probably best known for his portrayal of Robin in the animated series Teen Titans and Teen Titans Go!, but Scott has been working both as a voice actor and an on-camera actor since he was 11 years old! Scott has performed in such high profile shows as Ben 10, The Avengers, Scooby Doo, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Avatar the Last Airbender, the Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy and many more!

Scott brings a wealth of experience to our discussion as well as an amazingly positive mindset, and I’m thrilled to have him on the podcast. What makes things even better is that Scott is actually an avid listener of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast, and I was honored when he approached me one day to thank me for making it. That great interaction was part of what inspired this interview, and we spend some time recounting it for you in this segment. Chatting with Scott was a great pleasure, and I’m excited to share his insights and experience with all my listeners.

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #84 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 083 | How to Work Successfully with Producers and Casting Directors

VAM 083 | How to Work Successfully with Producers and Casting Directors

Welcome to episode 83 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In the last episode, I talked at length about agents and managers. Specifically, I explained how to build a fruitful relationship with an agent by understanding what is their responsibility as your representative and what is your responsibility as their client. I also discussed the differences between agents and managers to ensure that there was no confusion among my listeners about the different jurisdictions and approaches of these two kinds of professionals.

In this episode, I’d like to talk about how best to interact with Producers and Casting Directors. I want to help you understand the mindset of producers since they are the ones who usually have the final say about who does and does not get hired to play a voice acting role. This may come as a surprise to some aspiring voice actors who might think that this decision gets made by a show’s voice director. While a voice director’s creative input is definitely considered during the initial casting stage, it is almost always the producer who finally decides which actors will play which characters.

Sometimes, producers will hire an industry professional known as a casting director to help with this process. A casting director can save a lot of the producer’s time by helping them narrow down the number of auditions submitted by actors. The casting director serves as a filter, listening to hundreds of submissions and bringing the producer only a final few to be considered for each available role. Even though it has become more common recently for producers to approach actors’ agents directly in order to solicit auditions, a good casting director can still play an important role in bringing actors and producers together.

Both producers and casting directors have a problem, one that only you can solve! Check out the episode to learn how best to help them!

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #83 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 082 | How to Work Successfully with Agents and Managers

VAM 082 | How to Work Successfully with Agents and Managers

Welcome to episode 82 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In the last episode, I explained the basics of how the casting process works for traditional Hollywood style voice acting productions. I talked about the interaction between actors, their agents, casting directors and the producers of these projects.

However, after releasing the episode, I realized that some members of my audience might not be as familiar with the job descriptions and/or responsibilities of agents, managers and casting directors. Others may be familiar with what these industry professionals do, but may not know the best way to approach or work with them.

I’d like to take the next couple of episodes to clarify how you as a voice actor might interact with these types of industry professionals in the most fruitful way possible.

One of the most important business relationships you will have as a working voice actor is the one you share with your agent, so I want to spend the majority of this episode explaining what an agent is, what they are not, and the best practices for collaborating with them. Even though it is possible, especially in the beginning, for a voice actor to gain a certain level of experience and success without the professional representation that an agent can provide, it’s useful even for beginners to learn how actors and agents work together. This way you can be prepared to approach an agent with confidence once you’re ready to reach the next level in your career. I’ll also explain the difference between agents and managers, a distinction that can be confusing to actors new to the entertainment industry.

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #82 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 081 | Q & A Session 15 – How Casting Works & Deciding Which Projects to Audition For

VAM 081 | Q & A Session 15 – How Casting Works & Deciding Which Projects to Audition For

Welcome to episode 81 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In this episode, I continue answering questions from my podcast audience! For those who may not be as familiar with the podcast, in past episodes, I’ve given out a phone number where you can call in and leave me a question about voice acting as a voicemail. From time to time, I’ll pick the most relevant questions I receive and answer them here on the podcast.

For this round of Q & A, I answer questions from Anthony of Ladyville, Belize and Steven of Savannah, GA .

 

Anthony wants to know whether or not producers and directors pursue actors in order to cast them in their projects, or whether actors pursue producers in order to work on their shows.

Many people get their understanding of the acting industry from celebrity interviews or sensationalized entertainment magazines, where it can seem like actors are pursued to play certain roles and can then “pick and choose” which roles to accept. While this can be the case with high-profile on-camera celebrities, it’s not usually true for voice actors.

I explain to Anthony exactly how the casting process works in voice acting and how it differs from on-camera acting casting. I also share the 3 different ways that voice over casting tends to get done these days:

  1. Agencies
  2. “Pay-to-Play” Sites
  3. Direct Marketing

Depending on where you are in your career, and what types of voice acting projects you’d like to pursue, one or more of these casting paradigms might be appropriate for you.

 

The question that Steven is asking is if voice actors decide to limit themselves to one field of voice acting, or whether they audition for anything that comes their way.

I picked Steven’s question because I feel it’s a good follow up to Anthony’s question about the casting process.

I explain to Steven the balance one must strike between discovering what one’s niche is in the voice acting world and making sure not to limit one’s possible employment opportunities.

 

I hope you find the answers useful in your own voice acting endeavors!

If any of my listeners would like to call in with your own thoughts, thank you’s or questions, the number is:

323-696-2655.

Please don’t forget to include your first name and what city in the world you’re calling from. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #81 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 080 | Q & A Session 14 – Acting Believably & Putting Emotion into Your Performances

VAM 080 | Q & A Session 14 – Acting Believably & Putting Emotion into Your Performances

Welcome to episode 80 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

http://www.voiceactingmastery.com/podcast

In this episode, I continue answering questions from my podcast audience! For those who may not be as familiar with the podcast, in past episodes, I’ve given out a phone number where you can call in and leave me a question about voice acting as a voicemail. From time to time, I’ll pick the most relevant questions I receive and answer them here on the podcast.

For this round of Q & A, I answer questions from Andrew of Indianapolis, IN and Ryan from Piscataway, NJ .

 

Andrew finds that when he is reading a script that he tends to rush his acting resulting in a monotone or emotionless performance. He’d like to know how to solve this problem.

The challenge Andrew is facing is that he has a misconception that acting is about “performing” a voice or character other than oneself. This is a common misconception, especially in voice acting where people expect voice actors to be able to perform many different types of character voices.

I explain to Andrew what it takes to make sure you are speaking with your own authentic voice and how to a voice putting on a performance that an audience will feel is inauthentic and unbelievable.

 

The question that Ryan asks segues perfectly from Andrew’s. He finds it difficult to play characters that are very sad or are having intense emotions.

I assume that Ryan is comfortable acting in more casual or everyday circumstances, but when someone asks him to play something more passionate or dramatic, Andrew feels uncomfortable and unsure of what to do next. He may try to increase the intensity of his performance, but it always feels pushed and inauthentic. What’s going on?

The root of the problem is that Andrew is not giving himself permission to go to the emotionally dangerous places that the story is requiring of him. This is a common fear of actors, but it also a necessary aspect of great acting. If you’re playing pretend on a deep level, and you are asked to be believable in some horrible circumstances, the audience will not be satisfied unless they feel you go through that extreme experience. They want to hear you cry or sweat or scream as if you really are going through what the character is going through.

While such emotional vulnerability may seem unappealing or even irrational, I explain not only how important it is in order to create a captivating performance, but also how satisfying it can be to the actor if they commit to it fully and generously give to the audience an intense emotional experience.

 

I hope you find the answers useful in your own voice acting endeavors!

If any of my listeners would like to call in with your own thoughts, thank you’s or questions, the number is:

323-696-2655.

Please don’t forget to include your first name and what city in the world you’re calling from. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #80 Here (MP3)

 

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