VAM 130 | Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 3

VAM 130 | Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 3

Welcome to episode 130 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 second part of my interview with voice actor, director and teacher, Zach Hanks! You may be familiar with his performances as Garnac in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Morgan and Custis Pendleton in the video game Dishonored and Lars Halford in the game Brutal Legend.

Not only is Zach a voice actor, but he’s also worked as both a voice director and casting director on multiple video game projects. In addition, Zach has taught voice acting as a professor at the Stephen F. Austin State University in Eastern Texas. He currently resides in Atlanta where he is continuing to pursue his own voice over career in addition to founding the Voice Over Career Launch Pad, a service that helps voice over artists learn the skills they need to become business-savvy professionals in the industry.

In the previous episode, we explored major turning points in Zach’s varied career and the very practical lessons he learned from each of them. As we conclude our time together, Zach and I discuss his experience as a college professor and the most common mistakes that students tended to make in his acting classes. The time Zach spent working with those students helped him shape his current education program, the Voice Over Career Launch Pad. Zach observed that around the country there were many fine voice performance classes taught by very reputable teachers. Where he saw a lack of education was for voice actors who wanted to develop the technical and business skills that they needed to be competent and reliable in the voice over marketplace. Zach’s experiences as an actor, director, and professor give him a unique understanding of what it takes to help people get their voice over careers up and running as quickly as possible. But I’ll let Zach tell you more about all of those topics himself.

Zach’s Facebook Group: Voice Over Career Launch Pad
Zach’s Auto-Scheduler: Schedule an Online Meeting with Zach Hanks

 

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #130 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 129 | Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 2

VAM 129 | Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 2

Welcome to episode 129 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 second part of my interview with voice actor, director and teacher, Zach Hanks! You may be familiar with his performances as Garnac in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Morgan and Custis Pendleton in the video game Dishonored and Lars Halford in the game Brutal Legend.

Not only is Zach a voice actor, but he’s also worked as both a voice director and casting director on multiple video game projects. In addition, Zach has taught voice acting as a professor at the Stephen F. Austin State University in Eastern Texas. He currently resides in Atlanta where he is continuing to pursue his own voice over career in addition to founding the Voice Over Career Launch Pad, a service that helps voice over artists learn the skills they need to become business-savvy professionals in the industry.

Last time, during the first part of our interview, we discussed Zach’s journey through voice acting from his earliest days starting as an actor, through becoming a casting director, a voice director, a college professor, and finally moving to Atlanta to continue his career. It was an amazing journey with plenty of twists and turns! Every challenge that Zach faced taught him so much about himself and about the industry. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend you listen to the previous episode before continuing with this one.

In this second part of our interview, we delve deeper into the different turning points of Zach’s career. I ask Zach to elaborate on the lessons he learned from each of these influential experiences and how he applied them to creating his own unique voice acting journey. He’s got some wonderful out of the box thinking that I’m eager to share with you, as well as some tough love about what it takes to be truly successful! So let’s dive in!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #129 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 128 | Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 1

VAM | 128 Interview with Zach Hanks, Part 1

Welcome to episode 128 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 voice actor, director and teacher, Zach Hanks! You may be familiar with his performances as Garnac in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Morgan and Custis Pendleton in the video game Dishonored and Lars Halford in the game Brutal Legend.

Not only is Zach a voice actor, but he has also worked as both a voice director and casting director on multiple video game projects including Company of Heroes, Saints Row, and Warhammer 40,000. In addition to all his voice over industry accomplishments, Zach has also taught voice acting as a professor at the Stephen F. Austin State University in Eastern Texas. He currently resides in Atlanta where he is continuing to pursue his own voice over career in addition to founding the Voice Over Career Launch Pad, a service that helps voice over artists learn the skills they need to become business savvy professionals in the industry. I’m very excited to bring you Zach’s story because his experiences are so wide and varied!

In this first part of our interview, we cover Zach’s journey from when he started as a young high school student interested in acting, all the way through the myriad twists and turns of his acting journey up until today. We touch on his training, the challenges he faced when he first entered the entertainment industry as an actor, the lessons he learned going back to school to get his Master’s degree, the success he had as a performer, casting director and booth director after returning to Los Angeles, and even the insight he’s gained from teaching others how to pursue their voice acting goals when he was a college professor. It’s an amazing story filled with surprises! At each step in his adventure, Zach learned important lessons that I think you’ll really benefit from hearing! But I’ll let Zach tell you all about it in his own words!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #128 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 126 | Speech Problems that Might Be Holding You Back

VAM 126 | Speech Problems that Might Be Holding You Back

Welcome to episode 126 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’d like to spend some time discussing how important it is to be aware of what you sound like when you’re speaking. I have watched too many of my voice acting students struggle because they are unaware of what their own voice actually sounds like. Unbeknownst to many, what you hear inside your head when you’re speaking is not what others hear. If you haven’t taken the time to get to know how you actually sound to the rest of the world, you’re missing out on crucial information that can make or break your voice acting career. Not only do you need to be aware of the tone or timbre of your voice, but you also need to become intimately familiar with your habitual manner of speaking and how you articulate words. Like a musician playing an instrument, it’s vital that you understand exactly what kind of sounds you are producing and how they are perceived by others. Without such self-awareness, you will not know how to modify your delivery for different characters you’re asked to play, or how to make precise vocal adjustments in order to communicate effectively to your audience.

For some actors, their habitual manner of speech might be fine for portraying certain characters. These actors may have a sound that is marketable or popular at the moment, so they may not feel the need to spend much time thinking about how they sound. After all, it’s working so far. Meanwhile, other actors may struggle to be considered for parts because they may have regionalisms or enunciation problems which make it difficult for producers to cast them. Regardless of whether you are blessed with a currently marketable sound, or have some speech challenges that you need to overcome, at some point nearly every actor will be asked to play a character who speaks with a different intonation, accent, or vocal quality than the one you use in everyday life. In those situations, you need to be able to modify the way you speak in order to suit the character you’re being asked to portray.

While at first it may seem obvious that a voice actor needs to know what they sound like and how they speak, you might be surprised at how often I work with people who seem completely unaware of either of these things. If someone on the outside points out that they might have regionalisms or limiting speech patterns, they can often become quite defensive. In this episode, I want to explain why this is and help share some useful tools to help you overcome any limitations you might be facing due to habitual speech patterns. Changing how we speak is actually an incredibly emotional topic and can make many people feel uncomfortable. Hopefully by the end of this episode, you’ll not only understand the underlying issues at work here, but you’ll have a far better grasp on what you as a voice actor can do to avoid any speech problems that might be holding you back.
 
Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #126 Here (MP3)

 

VAMFR 021 | Theme Park Voice Over, Part 3

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VAMFR 021 | Theme Park Voice Over, Part 3

Welcome to episode 21 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

This is the third and final part of a special report on Theme Park Voice Over jobs by our special correspondent, Tom Bauer!

If you haven’t listened to the first two parts of this series, we highly recommend that you do so first. In this episode Tom will be referencing many of the ideas and concepts he covered in part 1 and part 2. In the previous episode, Tom discussed at length the auditioning and casting process for voice over work in theme parks. He started by telling the story of how he broke into working as a voice actor at Disney California Adventure on the “Turtle Talk with Crush” interactive show. He shared his experiences of what the auditioning process was like and how it took him a total of six attempts over multiple years before he finally landed the role of Crush.

He also talked about the different ways Voice Actors can look for theme park VO auditions in the previous episode.

In this episode, Tom will be discussing some of the challenges one may face as a theme park voice actor. He’ll also be focusing on the importance of maintaining a sense of professionalism in a Theme Park setting. We’ll be using the term ‘professionalism’ as a way to describe what is commonly understood in the entertainment industry as ethical and responsible behavior. An actor who is able to maintain a sense of professionalism will inspire confidence in their collaborators, whether they’re working with booth directors to create pre-recorded narration or with fellow cast members bringing characters to life in front of an audience. Conversely, if an actor behaves unprofessionally, their negative attitude can end up reflecting badly on them, damaging their relationships with collaborators and any prospects for future work.

If you’ve been following this special report so far, you’ll be delighted to hear that Tom’s five special guests have returned to share with me their thoughts on overcoming challenges and maintaining one’s professionalism in a theme park environment. We’ll be hearing from Rebecca Lumianski, who is an experienced actor and Consulting Director at Disneyland for shows like “Turtle Talk with Crush”. We’ll also hear from Joe Hernandez, who is the head talent and show trainer for Turtle Talk and a gifted voice actor who was recently featured as the character of Daruk from the video game The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Later, Tom will speak with the husband and wife team of Bill Rogers and Camille Dixon, who provide the official announcement voices for Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, respectively. Finally, Isaac Robinson Smith will also be joining us in our discussion. Isaac is a versatile performer for Universal Studios Hollywood and a former Turtle Talk actor. He provides the voices of Megatron and Optimus Prime from the Transformers film franchise as part of a character meet and greet that Universal Studios audience members can interact with. Tom found a lot of his guests’ insights and stories fascinating during this round of interviews and we think you will too!

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 #21 Here (MP3)

 

VAM 125 | Interview with Richard Tatum, Part 3

VAM 125 | Interview with Richard Tatum, Part 3

Welcome to episode 125 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 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.

In our previous interview segment, Richard and I discussed how he began producing demos for voice actors. He not only shared with us some great advice about what one should put on a demo but he also outlined the mindset one should have when using your demo to market yourself to agents and casting directors.

In this episode we discuss some of the most common misconceptions about demos. We talk about when the best time is to make a demo and how important it is to have professionally competitive acting skills before investing one’s valuable time and money into producing a demo. We wrap up our discussion with Richard’s final advice to aspiring voice actors. His words of wisdom are based not only on his years of acting but also his experience directing hundreds of performers on stage and in front of the microphone. I think you’ll find his insights incredibly helpful.

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 #125 Here (MP3)

 

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