VOICEOVER ARTIST SUCCESS SECRETS
by David Kaye
I’m David Kaye. Whenever I speak at or teach voice over classes or am interviewed about being a voiceover artist, sooner or later someone asks me, “What’s been the most surprising thing about having a career in voice overs?”
There are many technical aspects of voice work — things like microphone placement, learning how to bring the copy off the page…and all the technical stuff you need to do to be successful behind the mic.
But one of the biggest things is something I learned from a mentor of mine, Maurice Tobias. She folded her arms and said, “You know, you have got to take care of yourself. You have to look after your body. You don’t realize the pace in this industry.”
You could be running around in the car all day, going from session to session. That is what you want; you want to be busy. But when you get busy, you must take care of yourself. That surprises people who think, “Well, wait a minute. It’s just standing behind a microphone.”
Well, there is a pace you need to keep up. There is a mental pace, a physical pace. And if you are like me and like to stand the whole time, you are standing four to six hours a day.
You’d better have an outlet. You’d better look after yourself. And I mean going to the gym and working out or being active or doing SOMETHING. It takes a lot of energy to do voiceovers fulltime.
You may think I’m overemphasizing this, but think about it: If you are doing live taping or a lot of shows, your heart rate will just be zooming! And if you are in a situation where you need to do a live announce, or you are called upon to do some sort of voice over work, you are nervous. Your heart is banging away.
And you are burning calories. Your body is going through stress. Five or six TV stations need you to get their stuff done right away. You are cranking it out. You’ve got to go.
You are hopping into your car, your session is over in Santa Monica, and you’ve got to drive 30 miles to go someplace. Your heart rate is elevated and your body needs you to be able to take that pounding.
That is a day in, day out thing. So it is important you eat well and to take care of yourself, to look after your body. That goes a long way toward making some of the long days bearable. It is one of the surprising things that people don’t think about. But for a voice acting professional, It is really important.