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April 30, 2009

Looking and Leaping Into Voiceover

Actress and author Deborah Puette gives an in-depth, first-hand look at taking the plunge into her first VO demo. Her work with producer/voice actor Ed Cunningham is also documented on video. Highly recommended!

(Courtesy of Backstage.com)

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Number Ten With a Bullet

CNN's list of "10 jobs cooler than yours" places Voice Actor at the bottom. I personally think it belongs at least in the top five.

The article lists the average annual salary at $47,000. CNN would have done well to include a disclaimer; I'm not sure how they arrived at the figure, but it's a little misleading. These are just my own estimates: about 80% of union voice actors pull in a tenth of that amount (or less). Only 10 to 15% earn the $47K listed, and the six-figure range goes to an exclusive 2%. Plenty of non-union work is available, but I'd wager that the disparity is about the same --- and since most non-union work doesn't pay residuals, the overall pie is probably smaller.

All in all, I'd still take this gig over "Storm chaser" at number 8.

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April 15, 2009

Jennifer Hale VO Showcase

My previous post referenced gaming & animation fans who can be more than a little critical of voice actors in those mediums. It's nice, then, to see fans go to the same lengths to recognize excellence in voice acting. A YouTube user compiled this series of clips featuring the exceptional work of voice actor Jennifer Hale:

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April 14, 2009

Still Think Voice Acting is Easy?




You may change your mind after reading this excellent article from gaming site 1up.com

Hardcore gamers are notorious for attacking "bad" voice acting in games; some of the vitriol is deserved, but a sub-par voice performance usually isn't due to a lack of talent. Working videogame actors discuss the challenges presented in this unque genre of VO.


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April 13, 2009

Harry Kalas: 1936 - 2009

Harry Kalas 


Much of today's news coverage on the passing of Harry Kalas focuses on his longtime announcer gig with the Philadelphia Phillies. For this football fan, however, it's the NFL Films productions that will never quite be the same again. He turned the narratives of week-in week-out games into grand epics, all in that signature baritone that seemed as old as the game itself (but never lost its love of the sport).

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April 10, 2009

Callaway Spots

Here are the Callaway Golf TV commercials referenced eariler this week:

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April 09, 2009

Crispin Freeman Speaks at UT-Dallas

From Anime News Network:


Richardson, Texas (April 7, 2009) – The University of Texas at Dallas presents anime voiceover star Crispin Freeman, giving a lecture entitled “Mystics, Priestesses and Warrior Women,” at 7 p.m., Tues., April 14, in the Galaxy Rooms of the Student Union.


More info here.

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April 07, 2009

Press Release: Voiceover Artist David Houston Chosen for New Callaway Golf TV Spots


NewswireToday - /newswire/ - Austin, TX, United States, 04/07/2009 - Professional voice actor and audio producer David Houston provides voice in new TV spots for Callaway Golf's "Comparison" campaign.


Professional voice actor and audio producer David Houston was chosen to voice new TV spots for Callaway Golf's "Comparison" campaign.

Callaway Golf (NYSE: ELY), a global manufacturer of professional-grade golf equipment, worked with Austin, TX-based multimedia company FG Squared to produce the spots. Voice actor David Houston was chosen to provide the voice for the campaign.

In the spots (which include a series of :15 and :30 second TV commercials), Houston's voiceover advises customers on Callaway's Buy-Back Guarantee and 12-month warranty when purchasing pre-owned Callaway clubs. The commercials will run on The Golf Channel™ and various outlets during the Masters Golf Tournament 2009.

Callaway Golf Company manufactures and sells golf clubs and golf balls, and sells golf accessories, under the Callaway Golf®, Odyssey®, Top-Flite®, Ben Hogan® and uPro™ brands in more than 110 countries worldwide.

David Houston (davidhoustonvoice.com) is a voiceover artist, actor, and audio producer based in Austin, TX. He has been heard on numerous national TV and radio commercials, and also performs voiceovers for animation, corporate narrations, documentaries, broadcast voice imaging, audio books, podcasts and messaging on-hold (MOH). Houston was originally cast as the voice of James Bond in Activision's "Quantum of Solace" videogame. Also an on-camera actor, David Houston has appeared in episodes of TV's "Friday Night Lights", and will also appear in the upcoming films "Ex-Terminators" and "Temple Grandin".

Link: http://www.newswiretoday.com/news/49102/
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April 02, 2009

...But Who Doesn't Love Puppies?




No one I know, to be sure. Unfortunately, there's a shady "puppy-mill" subset of the voiceover training industry, where instructors with dubious credentials crank out student after student, demo after demo --- for a steep fee. Radio guru Dan O'Day's blog picks up on Harlan Hogan's examination of these hucksters.

So, to sum up: Puppies? Good. VO hucksters? Not so good.



(Hat-tip to Liz de Nesnera for posting this via Twitter.)

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