VAM 123 | Interview with Richard Tatum, Part 1

VAM 123 | Interview with Richard Tatum, Part 1

Welcome to episode 123 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

Welcome to the first part of my interview with my good friend Richard Tatum! Richard is not only an accomplished voice actor, and voice over teacher, but also an amazing producer of voice over demos. You may know him as Rex Goodman in Fallout 4, the voice of Theodore Roosevelt in Civilization VI and Omar Harmozi from the animated series Static Shock. I first came across Richard’s work as a demo producer when one of my students played me her demos and I was blown away by how well they represented her abilities as an actress. Not only was her character demo very compelling, but her commercial demo was impressive as well. When I asked her who had produced them, she introduced me to Richard and he and I have been friends ever since.

Like myself, Richard got his training in the theater and even had an opportunity in college to perform on stage with Patrick Stewart in a production of Shakespeare’s the Tempest! After moving to Los Angeles, Richard pursued both voice acting and theater and has made quite a name for himself as a director and adaptor of stage plays. He’s been nominated repeatedly for the prestigious LA Theater’s Ovation awards for his work as a director, and he applies these admirable directorial skills while helping voice actors create their voice over demos.

In the first part of our talk, we focus on Richard’s acting background and how he began his career as a performer. Early on he worked as an actor in a repertory theater company in Philadelphia, but it didn’t take long before he realized he wanted to make the move to Los Angeles to expand his acting prospects. Upon arriving in LA he began working as a tour guide at Universal Studios. This was fortuitous as it made it possible for him to take a workshop with a former tour guide who had become a professional voice actor, the famous Bob Bergen. Bob is probably most well known for being the current voice of Porky Pig, but he’s worked on hundreds of other influential voice acting projects. Bob was able to help Richard learn how to take his existing theatrical acting skills and best apply them in the world of voice acting. Making the transition from theatrical acting to voice acting can be challenging. I know it was for me at times. That’s why I really enjoy hearing how Richard was able to internalize Bob’s advice and apply it not only to his own voice acting career, but also to producing voice over demos for others. I think my listeners will really benefit from this time-tested wisdom.

If you’d like to find out more about Richard’s classes and voice over demo services, please visit his website at:
AbsoluteVoiceOverLA.com
or contact him via e-mail at:
AbsoluteVOLA@gmail.com

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #123 Here (MP3)

 

VAMFR 018 | Interview with Mela Lee, Part 3

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VAMFR 018 | Interview with Mela Lee, Part 3

Welcome to episode 18 of the Voice Acting Mastery: Field Report podcast!

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.vamfieldreport.com/podcast

In this episode our newest correspondent, Maureen Price shares with us the third and final part of her interview with the multi-talented voice actress, vocalist, and songwriter, Mela Lee.

Mela’s work as a voice actor spans anime, video games, film, and television. She is also the vocalist and songwriter for her band Magnolia Memoir. We’re very grateful to Mela for taking time out of her incredibly busy schedule to sit down with Maureen for this interview.

In the previous episode, Maureen and Mela talked about the importance of music in Mela’s life and how it enhances and informs her performances as a voice actor. They also discussed Mela’s foray into producing with the anime Skip Beat! and how her perspective as a voice actor was broadened by that experience. They wrapped up the previous segment by chatting about Mela’s web series and how important she believes it is for us to uphold passion and authenticity as guiding principles when we’re creating our own content.

In the final part of this interview, Maureen asks Mela a few of her favorite questions such as “What’s a piece of advice someone gave you about your career that you’ve never forgotten?” This inspires Mela to discuss how her childhood dreams have manifested in her life. She also shares her advice on how we can all get out of our own way creatively in order to remove self-imposed limitations. Mela concludes by recounting the time she jumped far out of her comfort zone by taking an on-camera acting class and how this led her to an important realization about her identity as an actress.

Mela would love to hear from her fans online! You can find her different projects at:
www.MagnoliaMemoir.com
@MagnoliaMemoir on Twitter
mela@magnoliamemoir.com

@themelalee on Twitter and Instagram

@LindbeckAndLee on Twitter

The VAM Field Report will be released on the 1st Wednesday of every month so stay on the look out for it!

Download VAM Field Report Episode #18 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 122 | Q & A Session 24 – Should You Pursue a Career that Pleases Your Parents or Follow Your Voice Acting Dreams?

VAM 122 | Q & A Session 24 – Should You Pursue a Career that Pleases Your Parents or Follow Your Voice Acting Dreams?

Welcome to episode 122 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 a very important question from Jessie of Chicago, IL.

Jessie wants to know if he should live a stable, conventional life that makes him miserable, or should he take chances with his future, live unconventionally, and lose everything.

I’m grateful to Jessie for his very philosophical question! It’s actually a really important subject to cover, so I’m going to spend this entire episode making sure I address it fully.

I begin by exploring the false dichotomy that is at the root of Jessie’s question.

While it’s true that making choices about one’s career is not something that should be taken lightly, Jessie’s articulation of the issue is a little extreme.

So I do my best to help Jessie avoid such a no-win scenario by taking a step back and assessing what it is he is really trying to accomplish here. I start by clearly articulating the issues that are at stake for Jessie and for anyone who find themselves in a similar predicament.

It seems to me there are 3 topics implicit in Jessie’s question. 1) his financial well being, 2) his personal satisfaction with his career, and 3) his parents’ respect and approval. While I believe it is possible to achieve success in all three of these areas, it can be challenging depending on your situation, your abilities, and the cultural values of your family.

After exploring each one of these topics in detail, I share with Jessie my own experiences trying to balance what I wanted to do with my life with what was expected of me by my parents.

Because this topic is a concern that many aspiring voice actors have when they contemplate pursuing an artistic career, I’m hoping that answering his question in detail will benefit a great many of my listeners!

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 #122 Here (MP3)

 

VAMFR 017 | Interview with Mela Lee, Part 2

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VAMFR 017 | Interview with Mela Lee, Part 2

Welcome to episode 17 of the Voice Acting Mastery: Field Report podcast!

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.vamfieldreport.com/podcast

In this episode our newest correspondent, Maureen Price is thrilled to share the second part of her interview with the multi-talented voice actress, vocalist, and songwriter, Mela Lee.

Mela’s work as a voice actor spans anime, video games, film, and television. She is also the vocalist and songwriter for her band Magnolia Memoir. We’re very grateful to Mela for taking time out of her incredibly busy schedule to sit down with Maureen for this interview.

In the previous episode, Mela discussed her entry into the entertainment industry and the ups and downs that came along with balancing multiple careers. She also shared her thoughts on the power of a supportive community and the excellence that comes from immersion in your craft. Finally, Mela provided insight into her evolution as a vocalist and a songwriter.

In this episode Maureen and Mela discuss the connection between voice acting and music and how they feed into one another. They also talk about how voice acting has enhanced Mela’s experience as a musician and vice versa. They then discuss Mela’s experience producing the anime Skip Beat! and how being on the production team broadened her perspective as a voice actor. Lastly, Mela and Maureen chat about her web series and the importance of passion and authenticity when creating your own content.

The VAM Field Report will be released on the 1st Wednesday of every month so stay on the look out for it!

Download VAM Field Report Episode #17 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 121 | Q & A Session 23 – How to Expand Your Vocal Range & Change the Quality of Your Voice

VAM 121 | Q & A Session 23 – How to Expand Your Vocal Range & Change the Quality of Your Voice

Welcome to episode 121 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 Adam from Scranton, PA and Matthew from Flagstaff, AZ.

Adam wants to know how he can expand his vocal range.

His is a very common question. I’m often asked by aspiring voice actors how they can expand their vocal range. Usually the question comes from male performers who want to know what they can do to lower or deepen their voice. I’ve almost never been asked how someone can learn to pitch their voice higher while voice acting. Now I’m not sure if Adam is specifically asking for advice on how to speak in lower tones, but allow me to address vocal range from a technical standpoint first. Then I’ll touch on some psychological issues that may be informing why I get asked this question so frequently.

Matthew wants to know how to change the timbre or quality of his voice.

I thought Matthew’s question was a great follow up to Adam’s about vocal range. Matthew uses the word “timbre” which is a very specific term that usually describes the tonality of an instrument. For instance, a violin and a trumpet might be able to play the same note or pitch, but the timbre or sonic quality of each instrument is very different. The technical reason for this has to do with the types of overtones or resonances that each instrument produces which give them their characteristic sounds. This means that you’d never mistake the sound of a violin for that of a trumpet because of their different timbres.

If Matthew will permit me, I’d like to use the term vocal quality in place of timbre in order to address his question. Based on the kinds of sounds he’s trying produce, I believe vocal quality is a more accurate description. Matthew says that he has difficulty performing a raspy character without hurting his voice or throat. Raspiness is more of a vocal quality than a timbre because it has less to do with overtones and more to do with breathiness, sibilance and other vocal qualities.

I help explain my approach to changing the quality of my voice and the importance of avoiding vocal injury when doing so!

I also recommend Kristin Linklater’s book, Freeing the Natural Voice.

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 #121 Here (MP3)

 

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