21 Jan When is a Voiceover Talent Ready to Make a Voiceover Demo?
A voiceover demo is meant to demonstrate what someone can actually do. Being ready to produce a demo should coincide with your ability as a voiceover talent to produce out-of-the-ballpark, broadcast-quality reads. All too often a voiceover talent demo is produced in such a way that it over-represents what a voiceover talent can do. When that talent shows up for a live audition, it quickly becomes clear that he or she isn’t yet up to the task. Many agents now require a live audition before they will consider signing you.
Voiceovers can be deceiving. Everyone can talk. So why shouldn’t you be able to step up to the mic and make that copy shine?
It’s important to understand that there’s more to a voiceover performance than just “reading copy.” There’s the performance aspect, ability to take direction, interaction with the people in the room, and learning to work in a fish bowl with any number of distractions and still do your best work.
So when are you ready?
Like any discipline, it takes practice. Hire a reputable voiceover coach. Find environments in which you can practice performing like the ones you will actually perform in, like a good class. Join practice groups. Practice on your own using broadcast examples as references.
The mind requires just as much exercise to get into shape as muscles do. As you practice, you will begin to get a sense of the varieties of reads you can do well. And that variety will help determine what to consider including on your demo.
When you feel you have a solid voiceover technique, and are able to reliably produce broadcast-quality reads, THAT’S when it’s time to find a quality demo producer. Voice casting agencies will take notice when your demos match your auditions.