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Live Auditions

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Smart Kitteh

Joined: 10 Dec 2004
Posts: 2600
Location: w. MA, USA

PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 1:46 pm    Post subject: Live Auditions Reply with quote

Haven't been to many of these, and would love to hear your stories. The first one I went to was pretty small, with 15 minute appointments so there were never a bunch of VOs sitting around glaring at each other.

Today's experience is maybe more typical. The auditions were to be held from 10-11:30. I got there at about 9:50 and there were 2 women waiting ahead of me, studying their less-than-one-page script like mad. I took my seat, looked at my colleagues hoping for some eye contact, a little small talk at least -- I mean, I didn't expect to have a deep conversation considering there was work to be done, but exchanging pleasantries was something I had been looking forward to because how often do we get to talk to other VOs face to face -- I know many of us do most of our work alone. But these ladies weren't having it-- they wouldn't look at me. I hmphed inwardly & scanned the script, then the audio engineer came out to see if anybody was ready. The other two wanted more time, and after a respectful moment of waiting to see if they really meant it I volunteered. I mean, it was just an ad, did I really need to study? I asked the sound guy a few questions about how he wanted the numbers pronounced, he played a clip for the same company to give me a feel for tempo and energy, I went in and we did it 3 different ways, I'm out the door at 10:07. The casting director will probably send me an outraged email saying, "Hank says you were out of there so fast you were a dot on the horizon while he was still adjusting the mic! You should have taken more time, you idiot!" Oh well. Don't know what I could have added.

Anybody willing to share some tales from the front?

btw here's my favorite ad recording session:


Scroll down & click on All Videos then scroll down to Monkey Spunk


Last edited by mcm on Wed May 25, 2005 3:47 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 3:51 pm    Post subject: Auditions Reply with quote

Yep, sounds like a regular audition to me!

Get in, get out, get on with your life!
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Dennis O'Neill

PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

IMHO, You did exactly what you should. Perhaps 'schmooze' a bit while the others were prepping, but other than that, studio people are busy people, they know what they want, and I wouldn't count you out at all! They hopefully appreciated the "here I am - let's get it done" attitude. I would.

Did you really "hmph inwardly"?? Next time, I suggest a "stifled, laugh-thru-nose-snort" as you walk past them. (Why ARE some VO people arrogant dickettes?)

Pretty typical experience. :(
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Triple G

Joined: 07 Dec 2004
Posts: 3298
Location: San Diego - serving the world

PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 9:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Live Auditions Reply with quote

mcm wrote:
I mean, it was just an ad, did I really need to study?


Well, you should study a little bit - figuring out what the darn thing is about - identifying key messages and all that rot...but that shouldn't take much more than a read through. Certainly time for pleasantries. We're pretty civil to each other here in San Diego.

There used to be a lot more voiceover auditions in San Diego. Hardly a one these days. Actually did one on Tuesday which was pretty painless. Haven't heard back yet. There were only a couple people called in for it, so I didn't have a chance to see anyone else except for one of my male friends who was called in for a different role.

PetCo was casting for some spots and some in-store work a while back and I met a couple new voices in town during those calls. Some pretty darn good talent in the room. Young whipper snappers! In each case, people read the spot and then got down to the serious work of networking. (As an aside - it's kind of depressing at times to realize that I am one of the old ladies of voiceovers here in San Diego - I've been with the same agent over 25 years!)

I remember a VO casting several years ago that was so ridiculous that it left everyone shaking their heads. It was for a local, short-term buy radio spot for some car dealer sale. They were casting for 3 voices as I recall - a female "reporter" in a helicopter, a male "reporter" on the ground, and a man-in-a-car "real person. I think I'm remembering that right.

Every voiceover person in town was there - pretty much all at the same time. A sudden flux in the force and the San Diego voice market would have been wide open for the hordes from LA willing to drive 3 hours for 5 minute audition - come to think of it there were probably a couple of LA talent at this audition.

Anyway, this producer knew most of us personally - knew our voices - knew our styles. There really was NO reason to have a casting session for this spot.

Believe me, there was a LOT of chit chat that day outside the studio before and after people went in to read. I'm sure our agents didn't realize how many people had been scheduled to audition. They only knew who they were sending.


Playing for a living...
YouTube Channel: http://youtube.com/connieterwilliger
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Dennis O'Neill

PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

did you get the PetCo spot - or "in store" job? Laugh

If you do many new auditions per month, then you're pretty good! Most come few between, per month - if that.

My worst audition - Woman who wanted to be my 'agent', asked if she could represent me for an audition. "They were looking for that guy in the TV show..not the main character,..but that neighbour.."

I'd never seen the show, though she promised to bring a video cassette of the show before the audtition, as I would be the "perfect" choice.

Well, a week later, she comes bursting in, asking "So..ya ready??" (for the actual audition it turns out.) I said "You didn't get the video to me, so I have no idea who I'm supposed to be!"

I go to the audition, find the same thing - people acting professional, ignoring everyone else, looking you up and down, quickly scurrying back into their hobbit holes of security..

I get behind the mic thinking "be professional Den,...don't ask what the person sounds like..don't let on that you haven't a f*&^%ing clue.."

That was about 1990. They haven't called yet. Think I should follow up and ask "So..about that audition I did 15 years ago.....so like, did I get the gig?"
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PostPosted: Sat May 21, 2005 11:52 am    Post subject: live auditons Reply with quote

I've always thought..and taught..that the time to visit is after the audition. Get to the session early..say hello and end the chat there. Leave the room with script in hand..learn it well..then go at it when the call comes.

A great check is to see how many of your co-horts are ready to visit after they have auditioned.
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Contributor II

Joined: 10 Feb 2005
Posts: 60
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2005 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds pretty typical, although the VO community in this market is a fairly close-knit bunch, so there's usually a lot of socializing.

I am always astounded at the number of people who show up late, or sometimes not at all! I can think of no better way to piss off an agent, especially if the client is in on the audition!

Some people mark up the script with a pen. Some take the script out in the hallway and practice reading out loud. I read through it silently a couple of times to familiarize myself, then set it aside. I think if I read the script too much, I'll lose the freshness and start sounding like an announcer.
John Bailey Voiceovers
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