How often do you actually “look” the part of a voice-over role you are playing?
The microphone captures your voice and not your physical appearance. Isn’t that grand?
Voice over artist and speech coach Jill Tarnoff shares about the bliss of voice acting and where your voice can take you in today’s VOX Daily.
The Bliss of Voiceover
By Jill Tarnoff
Have I ever mentioned the number one reason why I love voiceover work? It’s such sweet relief to not have to look the part.
I mean, there are many parts I want to play that I would never be granted if I had to play it on stage. For instance, think of the wish to be granted the part of a princess. I had a slight chance of being cast of as princess in my younger days. It often depended upon who was standing next to me. If it was a sweet young blonde then I was the godmother. If it was a rounder, plainer gal then I was the princess. However, with the magic of voiceover, I can play them all! I am a princess, glittery godmother, mean old hag, nurturing mom, even a little boy. I can be wearing minimal make-up, jeans and a t-shirt, but when I open my mouth a full cast of characters appears in the imagination of the listener. Heck, I can do that wearing no make-up.
I don’t even look the part of my sophisticated corporate narrations. I know I don’t because the image in my head of the person speaking looks nothing like me. Her crisp suit, smooth hair and elegant heels are nowhere near the microphone. Her wisdom, authority and grace are pouring into it through my vocal delivery. It’s so much fun.
In addition to my voice acting, I am a speech coach. I work with executives to help them sound their part. We usually speak on the phone before we meet. Many times they will mention that I don’t look like what they expected. Usually they expected taller and strangely, they often expected blonde. I’m not insulted. I am a petite brunette. Their reaction can be interpreted as the result of a social experiment.
I know we’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but it’s a harsh reality in most of the acting world. Fortunately, doesn’t affect the voice acting world. That’s why I say, “Listen to me.” Visit my profile, close your eyes and listen. If you don’t see what you want to hear, then describe it to me. I’ll create it with my voice. It’s bliss.