Bang Zoom Entertainment, a studio that has handled the voice recording on numerous anime/games, as well as hosting acting workshops, have recently compiled some good tips on respecting boundaries of guests at conventions. I’ve summarized these reminders for attendees and even up and coming industry to be aware of:
If you’re chatting with a guest at a signing, or out and about in the hallways, be courteous and know that the other person has many others to see and places to be. Don’t take it personally when the guest needs to move on.
Don’t badger a guest to spend time with you, watch your YouTube channel, listen to your demo, etc. Dropping off a business card and so on is fine. Just keep it casual.
Don’t follow/hover unless the guest has asked you to tag along. Stalking, no matter how harmless the intent, can definitely be perceived negatively.
Don’t invite yourself along to outtings with a guest unless you are personally told that you are welcome to join. Hearing about plans secondhand does not count.
From a general social perspective, remember that all guests are regular people just like you. They want to have fun, just like you. Please be respectful so everybody’s con experience can be top notch.
Hey everyone, just wanted to give a heads up that I will no longer be offering Skype VO workouts. Thanks to everyone who took one with me over the years. Truth is, I am too busy (and trust me, that’s a good first world problem to have in this business). They were never intended to be a quick way into the industry, or to instantly transform a fan/beginner/curious person into a professional voice actor. They were meant to be a “see what it’s like for the pros” scenario. Luckily, with all my disclaimers out there of NOT being an acting coach, the sessions were given an overwhelmingly positive reaction. I am so grateful to everyone for staying grounded and most of all, having fun. This brings me to an important point.
Being a fan of anime/cartoons/video games does not make you a voice actor. Doing impressions does not make you a voice actor. Taking a session with me or anybody else will not magically transform anybody, regardless of how much raw talent they have. Many who want to become voice actors eventually give up, or perhaps they just don’t have the chops (nobody starts with zero talent and becomes a Jedi level pro). This doesn’t make them bad people. I have a huge amount of respect for anybody who wants to try something a little outside of their box. At least they tried. Better than wondering what if, ya know?
To be a voice actor, all the info is out there (Google is your friend!). Train by taking acting classes/workshops with accredited acting coaches. Look for testimonials or if its a local class, ask for an audit (sitting in on a class for free or reduced rate to witness how the instructor teaches). Avoid snake oil salesmen who promise the world. I’ve been accused by a few of my colleagues of being that, which is a shame, since I’ve gone out of my way to express what NOT to expect from my sessions. I’ve never promised anything other than a critique and a demonstration of what to expect in an audition/session. I haven’t ever sugar coated my advice to anyone on the con circuit, online, or one on one. Ultimately, training takes time, patience, money, and a positive-but-realistic attitude. Auditions in this professions ARE the job. Booking the part is gravy. We are in the business of being told “no” on a daily basis (usually by just not hearing from anybody once the audition is done).
I wish the very best to anyone wanting to pursue this career, but know that there is no guaranteed payoff. You can take all the classes, live where the work is, and be the most talented and STILL not book. It’s all risk and know that every person’s path is unique. You can learn from all experiences, positive or negative, and you never know what curve balls life may throw you. I have said all of this before to many in person, at panels, and online, but wanted to re-state it for all the new folks following. Thanks a ton, guys!
Returning to Chesapeake, Virginia this weekend for ANIME MID ATLANTIC. Taking the red eye Thursday night so you probably won’t see me til openine ceremonies. But here’s the schedule for where else you can catch me:
6p Opening Ceremony (Main Event Room)
11:30pm Video Game Voice Acting
SATURDAY (my birthday, yaay!) ;D
12p Voice Acting
3:30 Anime Radio (voice actor cold reading, Main Event Room)
10:30p Voice Actors vs the Internet (18+, Panel Room 1)
11am Geek Talk (Panel Room 3)
2p Autographs (Main Event Room)
3:30p Closing Ceremonies (Main Event Room)
Returning for the gazillionth time to A-KON in Dallas, Texas this weekend! It was my first con as a voice actor guest back in 2001. I’ll be doing my usual hosting shenanigans for the Saturday night masquerade, plus other fun panels. Check the schedule below:
12:30p Geek Talk (Metropolitan)
10:15p Voice Actors vs The Internet (Sapphire, 18+!)
11:30am Making Your Voices Heard (Grand Ballroom D/E)
8p Masquerade (hosting)
10:30a Brunch with the Stars (Chantilly Ballroom)
4p Cold Read (Stemmons B/D)
Hey there, hi there, ho there! 2014 continues to be my busiest year yet in the industry. More projects have surfaced for the fans to gobble up. I voice a background soldier in DRAKENGARD 3 for PS3. I return as Soul in the sequel MUGEN SOUL Z, and will be in Orlando this weekend for OMNI EXPO!
Here is my schedule for OMNI EXPO:
1p “Attack on Titan” Q&A Panel w/ Matthew Mercer and Christopher Sabat (Main Events)
2p “Crossing Over to Seireitei (BLEACH)” Q&A Panel w/ Darrel Guilbeau, Grant George,
Carrie Savage (Special Events 2)
3-5p Autograph Signings (Exhibit Hall)
5p Photo Ops w/ Christopher Sabat and Kara Edwards (Exhibit Hall) 6-7p “Next Time on Dragonball Z…” Q&A Panel w/ Kara Edwards and Christopher Sabat
7:30-9p Pre-Reg Raffle Winner Dinner w/ Kara Edwards and Christopher Sabat (Special Events 2)
10a Autograph Signings (Exhibit Hall)
11a Photo Ops w/ Christopher Sabat and Matthew Mercer (Exhibit Hall)
12p Autograph Signings (Exhibit Hall)
2p Q&A Panel (Special Events 2)
3-5p Autograph Signings (Exhibit Hall)
5p Closing Ceremonies (Main Events)