The voice over community lost a great champion of educational excellence late last year when Bernard Shaw passed away.
Upon learning about this startling truth, I asked one of the people who worked closely with Bernard Shaw to share some of his remembrances in a tribute that we could all read and enjoy celebrating the life of a giant in Great Britain’s voice over world.
A teacher, talent, and man who had a way with words, Bernard shall be remembered by the voice acting community in verse and through his contributions to the Voice Over Experts podcast.
Bernard Shaw – A Tribute
Submitted by Paul Albertson
On the 18th December, 2008 the voice over community lost a truly great and influential member. Bernard Shaw not only recorded and produced thousands of demo reels for aspiring voice talents – many of whom are doing extremely well in the industry today, but he was a superb teacher – not just in the craft of being a professional voice over but he was also passionate about teaching students how to get paid work.
I first met Bernard in 2005 when we were putting together an instructional set of CDs called Creative Edge Audio. It was a ‘CD a month package’ that delivered advice from the experts in the field of Acting and voice over (way before podcasts!).
We were looking for industry experts to deliver practical career advice to our listeners, as well to inspire and improve the talent’s craft. Oddly some outspoken professionals and experts can suddenly become shy, a little tongue tied or woolly about their convictions and advice once you switch the mike on – but in the studio Bernard just delivered an unstoppable stream of excellent, valuable, funny and no nonsense advice, busting myth after voice over myth. I remember thinking “wow – this is pure gold dust!”
After listening to him, you not only felt that you could go out there and succeed but he gave you some invaluable tools on how to do so as well.
One great piece of marketing advice he gave in that recording that really stood out for me, was the idea that you as a talent were a business who had to see yourself as a Solution to someone’s (i.e. Producer/Directors) Problem – And to see things from their perspective.
For example: a script has been written, the studio booked, deadline set and their problem is they need a suitable voice – that’s when you as a talent become a solution or a ‘welcome guest’.
So his advice was to find out who’s hiring and see if what you can offer is a solution to their current problem – and if you’re a little squeamish about selling yourself, this perspective of you being the solution to someone else’s problem, rather than ‘hustling for work’ can really help.
The feedback we got from the recordings was excellent; people were listening, taking notes, going out and booking jobs! Later with Bernard’s blessing I contacted Stephanie from Voices.com and all agreed that they would make great podcasts for the voice over community – so if you haven’t heard them yet you’d be crazy not to give them a listen!
So from all the thousands of talents he coached, from all the Creative Edge Audio and Voices.com members around the world – Thanks Bernard, your spirited, practical and witty spot-on advice has been a huge and much valued contribution to many voices talents around the globe – and will still continue to be for many moons to come.
This podcast in particular is very special.
I invite you to listen to Bernard Shaw as he teaches you about “Where to Start in Voiceovers.” The secret? Learn how to focus on the realities of the voiceover industry and carefully research what you have to offer, and equally, research what all employers are looking for.
For more of Bernard’s podcasts, visit:
All my best,
If you would like to share your personal remembrances of Bernard Shaw or add a comment about how his teachings have inspired or affected you, please comment here on the blog.