VAM 053 | Q & A Session 07 – Acting Practice – Voice Matching & Fandubs

VAM 053 | Q & A Session 07 – Acting Practice – Voice Matching & Fandubs

Welcome to episode 53 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:

I’ve been getting so many great questions from my listeners recently, that I thought I would continue answering their questions here on the podcast. For those who don’t know, 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 David from Albuquerque, NM and Amanda from Irondale, MO.

David wants to know what options there are for practicing voice acting that don’t cost a lot of money. I share with him the advice I give my voice acting students: try voice matching professional voice actors, especially celebrities. Voice matching can help you in a number of different ways:

  1. It can help you expand your vocal range.
  2. It can build up your roster of characters that are accessible to you.
  3. You can get hired to voice match celebrities in video games, animation and commercials.

I not only share with David my advice on how to best practice voice matching, but I also explain the limits of practicing acting on your own and why it’s important to get the insight of a professional if you’d like to compete in the professional voice acting world.

Amanda wants to know if working on fandubs is a viable way to improve one’s voice acting skills. For those who may not know, a fandub is an amateur voice acting project where aspiring voice actors come together to re-record an animated show that they like with their own vocal performances. Some people do it just for fun, some people use it as a learning experience.

While there are many advantages to working on fandubs when you’re first starting out, including developing both your technical and artistic skills, there are also some pitfalls when working on fandubs. I share with Amanda what you need to know to best take advantage of fandub opportunities.

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


As a reminder, the number where you can call in and ask your question is:


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 #53 Here (MP3)


23 Responses to “VAM 053 | Q & A Session 07 – Acting Practice – Voice Matching & Fandubs”

  1. Kalyn McCabe says:

    Another way to practice on your own is to listen to commercials on the radio while you’re driving and try to recreate their performance. Recording, as well. Helps give honesty to your performance and helps with commercial reads!

    I really enjoyed this podcast, such good advice given! Thanks so much!

    Much love,
    ~ Kalyn

  2. Claire Berg says:

    Hi, Crispin. I listened to your “Top 5 Things to Avoid in Voice Acting” and you briefly talked about how those living closer to recording studios will have the upper hand. I have two questions relating to this.

    What do you suggest should be the maximum time required for a voice actor to get from their home to a major recording area?

    I live close to the Twin Cities in Minnesota, do you know if this is a good place for voice acting opportunities?

    Thank you!

    P.S. Okay, third question- IS THAT VICTORIA HARWOOD IN YOUR PODCAST?! Her voice is so beautiful!

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I’m not sure there is a “maximum time” per se, but I think it would be hard to work in a market if it took you longer than an hour to get to the studio or to your agent’s office. If it takes you more than an hour, it’s going to be difficult for you to schedule your life effectively.

      I don’t know of any voice acting opportunities in the Minneapolis area, but if you’re unable to track down any local opportunities, there are always opportunities online. I talk about online opportunities for voice acting as well as the major markets for voice acting in episodes 16, 17 & 18.

      Have you listened to those episodes?

      No, that isn’t Victoria Harwood in my podcast, it’s Jennifer Taylor Lawrence, another fabulously talented voice actress. But yes, Victoria Harwood does have a lovely voice.

  3. Melissa Golobish says:

    I do have a question, how do you submit projects for union?

    Sorry, yeah, I ask things that have nothing to do with your podcast.

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      Do you mean how do you submit yourself for union projects?

      Most union projects get cast through agencies. If you’re just starting out, you don’t have enough experience to be able to compete for union projects.

      Focus on improving your acting skills first, not looking for union projects.

      • Melissa Golobish says:

        No no no,

        I’m have no interest in voice acting or acting, or that sort, I’m more interest in the production side.

        As you said before to me, projects in fact need to be union if I did want you to hire you or any other union actor.

        I have looked into it, but…have yet to find anything that points me in the right direction of making a project union.

        • Crispin Freeman says:

          Have you ever produced a project before?

          In order to do a union production you need to be a signatory with the union. That means your production company needs to approach the union and go through whatever requirements they have for becoming a signatory. That means that you have to abide by certain union rules when it comes to pay rates, work conditions, etc.

          Do you have a production company?

  4. Terance says:

    Thanks for another great episode Crispin. I like how thorough you were with the fandub question. I never thought about how the whole peer group thing you mentioned could be a factor even though I’ve seen plenty of fandubs where that is the case.
    Anyway, I have some questions pertaining to how you yourself go about voice matching. How long does it typically take you to match someone’s voice? I know in the professional VA world most auditions have a 24 hour turnaround time. Does this mean when you get a voice match audition you spend the rest of the day listening to clips of that person’s voice, try to match it and then send off your audition later in the day?

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      You’re welcome Terance. Glad you enjoyed the episode.

      I don’t know how long it takes me to voice match someone. I guess it takes as long as it takes. Usually after working on it for a couple of minutes, I can tell if it’s even possible for me to voice match someone well. Sometimes they have throat damage (usually from smoking) that I can’t mimic, but there’s no set time amount it takes to be able to voice match someone. How long does it take to learn to sing a song? Depends on the song.

      Most auditions now have a 12-16 hour turnaround. That’s the norm. Sometimes they want it even faster. I usually get auditions at 6:30pm and they want them back by 9:30am.

      If you’re worried about being able to voice match someone in time for an audition, I would suggest you try voice matching some people now and see who you might be close to in terms of vocal sound. However, there are times when I get a voice match audition for someone I’ve never thought of voice matching (like Grimlock in Transformers) and I’ve got to see if I can do it as quickly as possible. It may take me as long as an hour to get to the point where I feel like I can really nail the voice. That’s just me though. Others may be able to mimic someone’s voice in far less time.

      • Terance says:

        Would you say it’s best to learn how to voice match celebrities who are popular at the time and also those who are featured in upcoming theatrical animated movies? (For example “Turbo” with Ryan Reynolds, Snoop Dogg, etc.) Most animated movies get video game tie-ins which I know can lead to work for voice actors who can voice match celebrities.

        Thank you once again for your thorough replies. Your answers really help me understand how professional voice over artists think and the decisions they make to benefit their business.

        • Crispin Freeman says:

          Absolutely it makes sense to voice match current popular celebrities! I voice match Orlando Bloom because he’s been in a number of high profile movies with game tie-ins like Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Caribbean and now the Hobbit.

          I’m glad you appreciate my replies. thanks for you good questions.

  5. David says:

    What in the world?! You actually answered my question…
    Not only that, but you answered the questions that were
    also within it. Thanks, so much.

    Also, I just thought I’d mention that I do intend to find
    professional help once I can afford it. I’ve been trying
    to save up… Thanks, again. (Still in shock, though.)

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      You’re very welcome. I’m curious, what was the question within it that I answered?

      • David says:

        There were actually two. One of them I could never figure out how to phrase, but it was well answered. Sorry, wish I could be less vague on that one.

        The other is always touched upon, but I rarely see anything full on it: How to come up with other character voices?

        I realize that one is something of a double-edged sword, as both skill and voice are necessesary.

        Thanks, again. Sorry for the late reply.

        • Crispin Freeman says:

          No worries. I’ve been crazy busy myself as you can see by the tardiness in my reply.

          As far as creating character voices, I think you’ll find Episode 58 very useful for that!

  6. Andy Hopkins says:

    Hey Crispin Andy here just have some small questions about your upcoming online workshop on August 17th. Firstly I payed and am wondering that if you get a reply email does that mean your in?? Also I know the website you’re supposed to meet on but how do you know its your workshop for sure? Please get back to me when possible. Either way I look forward to learning from you.

    Andy Hopkins

  7. Perry King says:

    Hey Crispin I have a question to ask and it has nothing to do with this podcast what so ever. I was just wandering if you also happen to be a voice acting instructor over at Bang Zoom! Entertainment?

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I do not teach any of the Bang Zoom workshops. All those workshops are taught by my good friend and talented director Tony Oliver.

      My classes are completely separate from the Bang Zoom workshops.

  8. Matthew says:

    I had a small question about demos. Is it necessary to state your name in the demo, or do you simply jump into your ranges for animation style demos? I noticed on your website you jumped directly into your ranges. I wondered if you might have covered making demos in an earlier podcast? I think if it wasn’t covered already, it would be a great topic to discuss in a future podcast episode.

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      It is not necessary to state your name in a demo. Sometimes agencies will have someone else state your name as an intro to your demo, but I think that is less and less popular as demos are now listened to online and not on CDs.

      I have covered demos in a past podcast, episode 28 entitled the Top 3 Demo Mistakes to Avoid. Hope that helps.

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