Oh my goodness, imagine if I wrote an entire blog post in iambic pentameter and 14-line sonnet format. Imagine the delight. How glorious.
I’m sorry, I am not going to do that today, but I am inspired by the ol’ Bard’s quote up there, so let’s run with it.
How many voices can a voiceover voice, if a voiceover can voice voice? Wait, that’s not Shakespeare.
Sumara, get to the point.
Have you ever stopped to think about just how many ways a voiceover can be used? The obvious things that come to mind are radio and TV commercials. But even those old faithful formats aren’t so simple these days, what with different types of online TV, mobile content, online radio, music and video streaming, podcasts… what else?
And then there’s audiobooks, which are going rather ballistic in popularity lately, because who wants to listen to the ordinary world around them (especially the 2020 world!) when they could listen to a deliciously talented voice telling them a long, entertaining story for hours?
There’s corporate voiceover – explainer videos, business presentations, B2B promo videos, website intro videos – and telephony, to make your business sound as professional and organized and fabulous as it is!
eLearning. From preschool learning apps (technology, man!), all the way through the school years to tertiary courses, and then corporate, industrial and medical training for the grown-ups. I’m actually pretty excited to think about how much a person can learn online these days. Like… everything! It’s amazing.
And, aha, the fun part – character voices! I’ve been doing a few character voices for games and animation lately and I LOVE it. Makes me think my drama teachers from way back when would be so proud of me. I was lucky enough to have an amazing acting teacher when I was young called Maxwell Vayne – he trained at the Royal Academy in London, he was SO posh and British and he drilled the name Stanislavsky very well into my brain. I like to think he’d be tickled pink to hear my zombie-like cannibalistic cult leader voice.
What other voiceover is there?[Disclaimer: I just thought to myself “where can I find a good list of voiceover types?” and my first thought was Sarah Kennedy’s lovely website, so kudos to Sarah and her website team for this list]
Okay, so there’s also:
- Imaging / Radio
- Medical Narration
- Political Spots
- Promo & Trailers
- Self-check / kiosk voice
- Technical narration
- Zombies (sorry, I really wanted the list to end with a Z. Zombie voiceover is totally a thing.)
I reckon every voiceover artist has their favourite one or two of these genres, and some that they are more or less skilled in. My favourites are medical narration, eLearning and characters for animation. I also do a lot of corporate video narration, and I’ve done a couple of audiobooks that mean a lot to me. I would LOVE to do some live announce VO when live events are safe again. I don’t do much commercial, and I won’t do political spots. To each their own!
What have I missed? If you’re a voice actor, please tell me your favourites! We can have a magnificent internet argument over who’s favourite voiceover genre is the best, instead of all those exhausting arguments about whether all humans deserve the same human rights.
Thank you for hanging out with me for a bit, lovely humans. Please get in touch with me if you need some voiceover (info at sumarameers dot com), or check out my demos over here.
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Have a fabulous day, and go be kind to someone.