Voice acting is a highly specialized field. The script may be what you see on the page, but there's a lot more to it than just speaking words. You need to bring nuance & authenticity to your performances in order to create truly compelling work. Voice actors also have to connect with the listener in order for the message of their scripts to come across effectively. While that might seem like an easy task, it's actually quite difficult...
Immersing Yourself in the Character
A voice actor immersing themselves in the character you are playing is akin to a chameleon adapting to its environment, seamlessly blending into the narrative landscape. To achieve this level of authenticity, you have to dive deep into the character's psyche, exploring motivations, desires, and emotions. Don't have a character? Make one! Every script has a character. It's the person telling the story.
Next, study the script meticulously - creating scenes with your character along the way. Don't forget who you are and your scene through every line. By doing so, you will transcend your own voice and personality, transforming into the persona you are portraying. This metamorphosis allows you to deliver a performance that captivates listeners as you bring the character to life through the power of your voice.
Understanding the message and intention of the script
As an actor, you need to understand who your audience is. If you're reading a script for a video game, then it's important to know what kind of demographic will be playing that game. Are they young? Old? What is their gender identity?
Here's an example. "This is my favorite color," this line could mean very different things depending on who says it and why they say it. For example: if someone says "these are my favorite color jeans" while holding up a pair of blue jeans in front of their friends at school or work--it's likely just something said without much thought behind it (and probably not worth paying attention too closely). But if someone were telling their spouse how much they loved them in front of everyone else at their wedding reception --the words would carry more weight because there would be an emotional connection between both parties involved, making everything more meaningful!
Engage your listener. Connect through emotion.- Anne
Bringing nuance and point of view to the read
It's easy for us as voice actors to get caught up in "just reading" a line rather than really thinking about what we're saying and why we're saying it. If your character is angry at someone who has wronged them, then feel angry! If they are excited about something great that happened, then feel excited! If they are passionate about the product, feel it! Use your own experiences and life experiences as inspiration for bringing out the best in each line of dialogue. You may also want to use your imagination: if there was one thing that would make this scene better or funnier or more emotional...what would it be?
The Client's Vision Coming to Life
A voice actor, entrusted with the responsibility of bringing a client's vision to life, acts as a conduit between the creator's imagination and the listener's experience. They meticulously interpret the client's creative intent, translating it into a captivating & immersive auditory landscape. By tailoring their vocal skills, such as tone, pacing, and emotion, the voice actor crafts a performance that seamlessly aligns with the project's objectives and resonates with the target audience. This harmonious blend of artistry and understanding allows the voice actor to transform mere words on a page into an engaging narrative, effectively embodying the essence of the client's vision and breathing life into the story, ensuring that the message is genuinely conveyed and leaves a lasting impact on the listeners.
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About Anne Ganguzza
Recipient of multiple Voice Arts Awards for Outstanding Narration Demo - Anne Ganguzza is a California-based Voice Over Coach and award-winning Director & Producer specializing in target-marketed voiceover Demo Production. Anne's production team creates SOVAS-nominated demos across several genres, including Commercial, Corporate Narration, and eLearning, and her VO BOSS podcast is the winner of SOVAS Outstanding Podcast in 2022.