I have never auditioned so much in my life as I have since Internet casting and remote recording came in vogue.
I can’t help but remember back to the 80’s when I rarely auditioned for anything. While I was on staff at KFMB-TV as a live staff announcer, the door to my tiny room would open and the production manager would hand me copy to record. Or I would wander down the hall to KFMB-Radio and do multi-voice spots with Mark Larsen or Danny Romero.
After landing an agent (Nanci Washburn – Artist Management) I still didn’t see much of a difference for the voiceover work. She simply called to book me on a job and I drove to Studio C or KyXy or Seacoast or Spot Shop or Lightning or Western Video or Four Square or JM Television or Invincible or San Diego Audio Video – the list goes on.
Of course I auditioned for on-camera work, but the VO stuff – more often than not – just got booked off the demo. This may have partially been due to my location(outside the big 3) and that at that point in time I was a pretty big fish.
After about a 10 year hiatus from VO work while running the video department at General Dynamics in San Diego, I started to ease myself back into voiceovers – and boy oh boy had the world changed!
It seems that the moment I had the ability to record out of my home studio and send voice files over the Internet I suddenly had to prove that I could read specfic words. No longer was the artfully prepared demo enough. I’m not complaining, but it was a big change. Auditioning is actually like taking mini-acting classes all day long!
I didn’t realize that at first. Not only was I simply not used to it, it was time consuming – and frankly, I don’t think I was all that good at auditioning for certain kinds of scripts, so naturally those didn’t convert to paying gigs. But somehow, I managed to find clients – many of whom are long term repeat clients.
Today voiceover auditioning is part of the job. And the competition is fierce. So I begin to treasure those opportunities to try something brilliant with the copy. Digging under, around, above each word to communicate the meaning and the emotion of the copy (even if it is just the word “uh-oh”).
Everyday this week I’ve spent at least two hours auditioning. I’ve had at least one paying job per day as well. And spent the rest of what might constitute a typical work day bookkeeping, marketing and learning something new about a piece of my production software.