12 Tips for Better Recording Session for Actors

This blog is written by (Kyle Rea) who has been creating voices since childhood and nicknamed "chatterbox" by his mother. 12 years ago he moved to Los Angeles to pursue voice-acting as a career and has since voiced over 60 characters in over 40 anime & live action movies and tv shows. A few are (Fist of the North Star, Digimon, Ultraman, Gaiking, and Space Pirate Harlock.)

Getting booked in the voice-over world is not easy, as the same Producers & Directiors constantly use the same voice-actors over and over if they like them, and since it's so hard to get in, most the voice actors are already at an elite level once they start booking consistent work. 

Here's some tips and tricks he's shared with us that will allow for the best recording session to take place. 

1) Be Prepared

Rule #1 is ALWAYS be prepared and on time to your recording. The more professional you are, the better chance people will want to work with you again in the future. This is the KEY ELEMENT to continuously booking with the same clients over and over again.2) Prep your Dialogue

  • Prep your dialogue ahead of time. Underline your keywords to emphasize on and get fluid with the dialogue so you can speak freely without mistakes. What are you selling? What character are you portraying? What is the frame of mind of the reader? Is it narrative or commercial? Is it natural or over the top?
  • Know what it is you are creating and do the homework ahead of time. Create a backstory if you have to, in order for it to make sense, but just make sure you do it all ahead of time so when you get to the recording booth, you're ready to go! An engineer or director can't stand someone that isn't prepared. It just costs far too much investment and time to deal with people not prepared and too many other people that are prepared waiting for the opportunity. 

3) Rest & Sleep

  • Sleep well so you have enough energy to get through the day. That last thing you need is to have less energy than you need to focus and get through the copy at your job. Be the best and you'll get referrals. Do a sloppy job and you'll likely never get called back or even blacklisted.

4) Corks

  • Place a cork in your mouth and bite down with your teeth. Separate each syllable by smacking your tongue against the end of the cork in order pronounciate the words. After doing this once or twice, take the cork out and say the same dialogue. Don't you find it much smoother to speak the same words as before? 

5) Voice Tone

  • Is it natural or commercial? Are you angry or sad? Are you selling something exciting or something for cleaning? What type of energy do you want to distill in your audience? Get that down by knowing your intent and then projecting the amount of energy within the dialogue to the audience. 

6) Don't "copy" an exact style, it's already there

  • Be unique and be yourself! If they wanted a copycat, they can get any one of the other 903713 people that can play a pirate voice, so throw your own unique spin on it. They are booking you for being your own version of what it is they are asking for, most of the time, unless specifically stated ahead of time they need a "mimic".

7) Drink lots of water before hand

  • Drink lots of water several days before and rest your throat and voice from strenuous activity. Keep it moist so it won't crack during the day of your recording. 

8) Natural Sugars for the throat

  • Bring tea with honey and lemon or gatorade or something similar with some sugary water or candies and that will keep your voice slick as well so you don't rough it up when using it so much in such a little amount of time, especially if you will be yelling or screaming. 

9) Green Apples

  • Believe it or not, sucking on green apple slices will help help you eliminate the "tsk" and "sss" in your dialogue recordings. The tartness keeps your tongue from smacking.

10) Know your vocal strength

  • Be in complete control of your vocal tone so you can get the very energy you need to omit into the mic without over or under doing it. 

11) Warming up your voice

  • Before recording, make sure to warm up your voice so you don't "crack" in the middle of recording. Or sometimes you may hit a note that's off and that could either cost the whole copy or if it's live, may give off an embarrassing vibe to your audience.

12) Know your market

  • Know your market because that is who you are influencing. The better you know who you're speaking to, you'll understand how to project your voice and have a better gut feeling if the audience might enjoy your performance or not.

cREAtive Castle Studios is an organization built around providing services, content creation and education from it's elite artists. Feel free to book us for any creative or marketing service you may need for your business, brand, production or agency. We also work closely with celebrities.