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Have You Considered Voiceovers?

December 06, 2017

Voiceover work is another way to get your child involved in Showbiz

Most would agree that a child's voice lights up a room - especially when that voice is saying something cute, funny, surprising or ironic.  That's why kids are needed as voiceover artists for commercials, film, radio or TV to play roles in radio ads, make announcements, dub over films and many other "voice only" parts.

There are many child actors (past and present) who have been noted for their voiceover work such as Shawn Pyfrom (Stanley), Tiffany Billings (Snoopy: The Musical),  Jonathan Taylor Thomas (The Lion King), Max Charles (Mr. Peabody and Sherman) and many more!

Voiceover work is highly- specialized and competitive.  However, if you and your child are looking for additional opportunities to pursue the showbiz industry, this is a great area to explore particularly if your child has an excellent, articulate speaking voice.  If your child has the ability to do varying voices or character types, even better!

So how do you get your child in to voiceover work?

To pursue voiceover work, most adult actors would be encouraged to first create a demo.  A CD or mp3 sample of your child's voice, or a website where an agent or casting director could listen online may prove handy in your search for work.  However, young voices don't necessarily need professional demos as an initial step.

"The child's vocal quality, maturity and skill level change very quickly," explained Cathy Kalmenson of Kalmenson & Kalmenson Voice Casting, Inc.  "Some kids agents do encourage [demos], while others don't, so check with your agent or manager."

If you currently have representation, you can inquire as to whether or not your agency represents Child Voice Talent; agencies such as CESD and Osbrink have departments specifically for this.

If you don't have representation and want to pursue voiceover work, consider enrolling your child into a voiceover class or workshop to improve upon his/her skills and gain exposure.  Voiceover Casting companies like Kalmenson & Kalmenson often offer classes to help actors work on their voiceover skills.

"Voice over is less about vocal quality, and more about being responsive to a situation," Kalmenson says, "so acting skills trump the sound of your voice."

Cathy also explained that when they cast kids they like to get a sense of each child and cast accordingly as they get to know them.

What is the pay scale for voiceover work?

Voiceover salary depends on whether the job is union or non-union and can be based on a flat rate, per job/session, or hourly rate.

While union jobs often have a base rate, non-union jobs can range from $50-$750 per hour.