Wednesday, April 10, 2013

What's a voiceover ten words or less?

I never realized how difficult answering that question really is. And, you want me to do it ten words or less? “Impossible,” I said. I suppose it's similar to being asked to just provide the executive summary to a long report. No one really wants to read the whole thing. We live in an impatient world. What they really want is a Jack Webb/Joe Friday response. “Just give me the facts sir.”

I sat down with a note pad and pencil figuring that I could quickly jot down my answer. An hour later, I was still erasing, crossing out words and repeatedly starting over. This is impossible.  I can't describe voiceover in ten words or less.

I looked in the on-line dictionaries, on Wikipedia, on all the well known voice actor web sites. They are all very wordy and describing this vocation in ten words or less is just not done. After several hours pondering that task, I came up with some pretty general phrases but they still didn't do anything for me.

“I sell my voice to anyone willing to pay for it.” Oh darn, that's eleven. Beside, it sounds like I'm operating in a “red light district.” I'm glad my studio doesn't have a red “recording” light or that might really be true.

So, back to the note pad and several hours later the recycle bin is filling up with rejects. I finally settled on a phrase that I am comfortable with. I know some people will have a problem with it and try to shoot holes in the definition. But, it's what I'll be using at the next speed networking event where time is critical and the definition has to be included in the two-minute elevator speech.

So in ten words or less, “What's a Voiceover?”

Any voice heard in a promotion, project, 
presentation, or application.

Have a different view?  Please leave your thoughts and comments below.

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