Jean-Marc Berne, President/Talent
914-420-3022 | jeanmarc@bernemediaenterprises.com

Everything listed under: Voice Over Workshop

  • Paint Images With Your Voice

    But how? That's a good question. As Voice Over Artists, we face the challenge of creating whole worlds with the use of our voices. Today we cover just how to do that.

    First off, I like to call ourselves Voice Over Artists because we paint images with our voices. Our audiences will believe our performances only if we believe them ourselves. So think of the following as you're performing:

    - Who are you talking to? The trick in this technique is to always imagine speaking to someone specific. Not someone you know from TV, unless you really know that person. And direct the copy to that person.
    - where are you? Are you in a library? Or in a supermarket shouting 'the blue bottle!' to your wife at the end of the aisle?
    - Is it night time? Day time?
    - How are you? are you hot? Cold? Hungry?
    - What are you talking about? A bridge? A river? Visualize it.
    - What are you doing? Are you cleaning dishes as you talk to your children about their day in school? Are you changing a light bulb? Remember that our physicality affects our performances.

    And as you're reading, visualize each phrase, each place you describe, each person you're talking to, every object you touch, see, and every scent you smell. It's almost as if you're discovering what's happening around you in the moment. And that's what it's all about. Being in the present moment and sharing that experience with our audience.  If it feels real to you, it will feel real to our audience.

    Please try this out for your next online audition and let me know how it goes. I welcome your thoughts in our comments section!

    For more great Voice Over tips, info on Voice Over Coaching, Bilingual Voice Over production and Songwriting, please visit the Berne Media Enterprises page. May ‘The Voice’ Be With You, and thanks for spreading the word!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     


  • Learn To Self-Direct To Get More Voice Over Work

    But isn’t there always a director during a Voice Over gig or an audition? If you’re a working Voice Over artist who’s done any work online, you know that a lot of these online gigs and auditions require for you to read the specs and decrypt the directions to give your best performance. And in all fairness, many of them have very specific directions. But some of them are very vague, leaving many of us talent with a big question mark over our heads. So, what to do?

    Today we cover the importance of learning to self-direct. It’s one thing to be at an audition and follow the directions of the Casting Director or Producer, which is a very valuable skill, but self-direction is a different skillset that will make you stand out from the VO crowd. First of all, nowadays you’re expected to have a home studio as a lot of agents and producers want a quick turnaround on auditions, and they want to save some money by receiving online auditions instead of paying a pretty penny per hour for a casting session at a plush Manhattan studio.

    Here are some examples of Audition instructions and best ways to approach each one of them:

    - When you’re instructed to sound conversational, natural, like an everyday person: That means avoid at all costs sounding like an announcer. Make sure to visualize the person you’re talking to, and vary the energy in your read between kinetic and psychological energy. To learn more about kinetic vs. psychological energy, check out one of my past blogs:
    - When instructed to give a warm read: Put your hand over your heart as you’re reading your lines. You’ll automatically soften your tone.
    - When instructed to sound like a celebrity: Study that celebrity. Look them up on You Tube, listen to their quirks, look at their mannerisms. Yes, look at their mannerisms, because believe it or not, our physicality affects our performances and our sound. And the more you match those mannerisms, the better you will capture the full character. Match their energy, the placement of their voices (head, nasal, throat, adenoidal, chest, or a combination of these). Match their clarity, their presence, their tempo, their volume, their inflections and their pauses. Record yourself as you’re doing this exercise so you can check if you’re sounding as close as possible to the person you’re imitating.

    These are just a few examples. And when you’re given vague directions: Go with your gut. What does your gut tell you? Just roll with it and don’t deliberate over your choices. As the saying goes: “Fortune favors the bold.” So be bold, and go forth and conquer!

    Please try this out for your next online audition and let me know how it goes. I welcome your thoughts in our comments section!

    For more great Voice Over tips, info on Voice Over Coaching, Bilingual Voice Over production and Songwriting, please visit the Berne Media Enterprises page. May ‘The Voice’ Be With You, and thanks for spreading the word!




  • No Room For Your Voice Type? Think again.

    When it comes to making a dent in the Voice Over industry and carving out your niche, persistence is key. You’ve gotten the best training, you’ve got a killer Voice Over Demo, a clear brand for your voice, you’re going to auditions, and you’re going to all these networking events, ever enriching your support system and your book of contacts. You’re doing all the right things except for one thing: maintaining the relationships that you make. And that’s the one thing that may be slowing down your progress…

    On today’s blog, I’d like to share with you a little story of inspiration that one of my star students, Julieta Medlar, just shared with me that I hope will inspire you too:

    “Hola Jean-Marc,

    How are you? I wanted to let you know that I booked 2 jobs in the last month. The first one was a private audition from the Voice Realm. I had to do the voice of Sparkle (Girl) and Speedy (Boy) for an educational video.

    The second one, is my biggest project to date. I've been on the roster for TVandRadiovoices.com, which is ane-learning website. Over the years, I've stayed in touch with Kirissa and she's always told me that they don't have auditions within my voice range. It just so happened that a project came through where they needed youthful voices and she thought of me. I auditioned and got the part of "Jing-Jing." This project will take place until March of 2016! It’s an e-learning program to teach Chinese students how to speak English. So every month, I will be recording something until next year!”

    I don’t know about you, but this e-mail made my day. I hope it will also inspire you to keep chugging along, and to always remember to follow up and keep yourself fresh and relevant in people’s minds. You can check out Julieta’s website at www.julietamedlar.com. Congrats to Julieta for being persistent and trusting that something will eventually give!

    How do you relate to this story? Have you had a similar experience? I welcome your answers in our comments section.

    For more great Voice Over tips, info on Voice Over Coaching, Bilingual Voice Over production and Songwriting, please visit the Berne Media Enterprises page. May ‘The Voice’ Be With You, and thanks for spreading the word!


     


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