Biggest Mistakes In Voice Over: Part 1

In this multi-part series, I’m going to address the biggest mistakes we make in voice over.  I articulate these mistakes because I’ve made them, and I’ve seen others shoot themselves in the foot, not even realizing that they’re making mistakes they can so easily avoid.

Biggest Mistake #1: Not Practicing Aloud EVERY SINGLE DAY

If you are not practicing every single day, you are preparing to fail in voice over.  A week without auditioning makes me rusty, so I can’t even imaging staying sharp if I’m not doing this work each and every day. My favorite way of practicing when first starting out is reading aloud.  Read to your children, your nieces and nephews, your neighborhood kids…anyone who will listen.  Seems elementary, but if you love language, storytelling, and entertaining people, there is no better way to do all three for a captive audience than reading to children.  If you are lucky enough to be able to read books aloud to others everyday, you will hone your instrument and up your audition game exponentially.

If you cannot read books in front of a live studio audience, then please read every thing you can aloud whenever you get a moment.  If professional pianists can practice their instrument six hours a day, if golfers can spend hours each week hitting balls before every going on the course to practice, and if dancers can do 10 hours of classes and rehearsals per day, surely you can find an hour to read aloud EVERY SINGLE DAY.

Lastly, If you have signed up for one of the online casting sites and are complaining that you are not getting any action on them, I challenge you to read EVERY SINGLE AUDITION that comes through your inbox.  First, listen to your studio quality; is it up to snuff?  Second, you will get better and better at auditioning, sheerly through repetition.  Third, you will most likely book a job–congratulations!  Now you can’t bitch any more that you’re not getting enough action in your career because you are making it happen!

Anna Vocino

2 Comments on “Biggest Mistakes In Voice Over: Part 1”

  1. A story I heard that supports what Anna is sharing…
    Pau Casals i Defilló (Catalan pronunciation: [ˈpaw kəˈzaɫs]; December 29, 1876 – October 22, 1973), known during his professional career as Pablo Casals,[1][2][3] was a Spanish cellist and conductor, born in the region of Catalonia. He is generally regarded as the pre-eminent cellist of the first half of the 20th century, and one of the greatest cellists of all time. To add some history to what Anna is saying …there is a great true story about Mr. Casals. He was 85 years old at the time….a reporter was coming over to Mr. Casals home in New York City and the Butler opened the door and said Mr. Casals is in the Garden …so the reporter headed through the Town Home to the Garden …meanwhile he could hear the sound of a Cello and the repetition of SCALES that musicians do to stay sharp…as the reporter stepped out into the Garden Mr. Casals was finishing a series of Scales. After he stopped the Reporter said…”Mr Casals you are the greatest Cellist in the World… why are you doing scales? Mr. Casales said, very humbly.” I think I’m getting better.” So Anna is correct in telling you to Practice… Professionals always do. If it’s a hobby then move on…and do something you would PRACTICE every day…that is a profession… this story I heard when I was a teen so it’s always been of extreme value…all the best

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