Mark posted the following on Linked-in: Working Voice Actor Group. Hope it is of interest.

Sep 24, 2011   //   by admin   //   Discussions, News  //  Comments Off

Mark Estdale • As a casting director working with voice. I put a tight specific brief with specific experience requirements on a site then profile the results. If I get carpet bombed by every hopeful and their dog the site wont be used again. For example if I request a native Dublin voice and get someone who says they can do the accent they will be blacklisted. Automatic E for ignoring the brief. If I request a perfect Dublin accent I will listen to them, but if they aren’t perfect the result will be the same, E for lack of self awareness.

I do the same with briefs to agents. Every site, agent and talent seen is profiled, A = excellent for the job, B = could do it but will need nurturing, C = will need close directing, D = dreadful, E = (fill the space). Team favourite is executionable. Sites like voices.com unfortunately average D & E the A & Bs rate is less than 0.5%. C’s are forgiveable.

FYI I never Linkedin with actors unless we do other stuff together. Trying to link-in with me cold gets an automatic D and a spam tick, as I use linked in strictly for the business end of my work. I’m happy to be spammed via facebook though.

It’s tough as an actor looking for work. My advice is the precision showreel. Find out everything you can about who is casting and the production type. If they request samples then only send samples that match the requirement and nothing else. Only supply more if you get asked for more. I cast for actors for voice performances for drama so I expect all samples sent to me to be either real character or narrative work. No ads or silly voices and if you’re doing a non native accent be perfect. Keep it natural. In casting the esnarrativesential requirements are sight reading and listening to the director. Never, never push, don’t talk about yourself without being asked. But if asked keep the reply concise and on point.

I usually back off when someone introduces them self as a voice talent or voice actor as the terms frequently signal a lack of acting craft/training. But I will check credits as I know many actors who work mainly with voice. The actors who do ADR and radio drama are high on my radar. Also actors who are good with improv get noticed. In production there will probably be no script in advance and no rehearsal. Those who request either usually lack confidence in their ability or they lack ability period. OK that’s a red rag, sometimes there are benefits from advance scripts, rehearsal or a table read but the essential thing is to trust the director’s judgement, the director will want the best from you. If you do good, they look good. Usually they are directors because they know how to get the results.

Back to voices.com. I go there occasionally to seek talent but I’ll do it quietly. It is a bit like panning for gold. It’s there somewhere but finding it takes time, getting wet, cold and dirty.

To see the whole discussion answering the question: “I joined voices.com for a month and voice the audition, send it back and never hear from them again. Has anyone here been winning those auditions? What is the secret?”  go to http://linkd.in/qUyyMg There are some interesting threads there.

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