voiceovers

I booked a voiceover that recorded yesterday and when I finished the session - the producer said I was like a surgeon with "laser precision". I've been a regularly working voiceover artist now for about 6 or so years and I have never heard anyone describe my work like that. It made me really excited. I guess because it's a really good marker of where I was and where I am now.

I'm normally pretty skeptical of compliments and good feedback - I attribute to a healthy dose of self-loathing that my parents instilled in me. My parents had perfectly good intentions - they didn't want me to have a big head. So instead - I just have my small head and think that no one's compliments are genuine. I kid. Thankfully, I recognize my cynicism and am trying to balance my ego appropriately.

I've been pretty lucky to have booked voiceovers in the first place- not really knowing what I'm doing. My first voiceover audition was for a Western Union radio ad. It was a union job. A manager I had just met called me and asked if I could do a Filipino accent. I said yes and he told me to go to the audition later that day. I did not know if I could do a Filipino accent. Both of my parents are part Filipino, but their ethnic makeup also is comprised of other ethnicities like Spanish, Irish, Scottish, Native American and Chinese. They did speak Tagalog at home to each other, but never to us. And both of their accents are markedly different. Come to think of it - almost all the Filipino people I know have wildly different accents. But I digress. Anyway, I said I could do it - but I had never practiced it. So I called my parents and I couldn't get a hold of them. I only had a couple hours before I had to go audition. I called my brother and asked him to do a Filipino accent, and then I repeated it back. "You sound French" he said. We had a good laugh about that. So I just kept working on it, until I finally got a call from my dad.

Me: Papa, just talk so I can hear your accent. (my dad is a man of few words)

Papa: Uh....

Me: Like full sentences so I can copy you...

Papa: I don't know what to say

Me: I don't know what to say (imitating him)

Papa: I don't sound like that.

I went into that audition and worked on the copy and with confidence, gave my best Filipino accent.

I booked the job. That was back in 2004. I was cleaning out some old tax documents and found the pay stub. For me, it was a great lesson in - just say yes, and figure out how to do it later.


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