EG Daily's Up Close and Personal Voice-Over Acting Seminar
Starring: EGDaily, BillFarmer, DebiDerryberry,JeffDanis, et al.
Runtime: 2 hrs 39 mins
$2.99 - $9.99 Rent or Buy off off Amazon.com
The short and sweet
A solid introduction to voiceover by a top notch voice over artist. Worth at least as much for it’s practical life survival skills as well as voiceover, the seminar resonates with combination of realism and hope for people entering the profession.
If you don’t know E.G. Daily, you should. Your childhood or your children’s lives probably heard her voice every week for years without knowing it. If you read her IMDB entry, one can’t help but wonder at her accomplishments in voiceover. She’s the voice of Buttercup in the Powerpuff Girls,Tommy Pickles from the Rugrats, Mockingbird in the Avengers animated series, as well as weaving in and out of hundreds of cartoons in roles large and small, and also an on screen actress. Have I mentioned she’s also a very accomplished singer? In short, this woman has done a lot. Through this video she shares the wealth of her life experience through the lens of voiceover.
Although the seminar is somewhat organic and conversational, it is roughly broken into 2 parts:
Part 1 starts with an introduction to E.G.’s work, and how her career started. From her time as a singer who couldn’t afford her own band to being a voiceover superstar, the actress many times noted that her being open to new experiences “or offshoots” , “pushing one’s edges” and following one’s passions has led to her life and career blossoming. Throughout the seminar, you also get to see the ways that E.G. and her associates (headed up by Bill Farmer and Debi Derryberry) come up with voices and the techniques they sometimes employ to bring them to fruition.
Even though this seminar is full of great introductory advice for voice over, a significant amount of time was spent on E.G. discussing her battle with depression and anxiety, and how she learned to manage and overcome it.
I personally found it very interesting, as the discussion gave the conversation a unique perspective and gravitas. The tale she weaved of her life had a somewhat cautionary tone, but ultimately, she emerged from it and took the listener to a place of hope. This isn’t a place of juvenile happiness though. It’s an adult place of a woman that radiates strength, and understanding of herself through much self-contemplation and analysis. Her time in the psychological crucible in turn allowed her to gain a powerful empathy for others who also have had similar issues.
I found myself admiring a person who could give a frank discussion on the topic in such a way that evoked neither pity or sadness in the telling. Her tale was simply honest and true, and be shining a light on her depression, the ghosts of the past had nowhere to hide. I think her story also lent the listener a sense of her humanity to the listener. We often see celebrities as monolithic, people who can’t or shouldn’t have problems given their status amongst us. Knowing that even a person as skilled and full of humor and life as E.G. could still have feelings of doubt and anxiety (and the very real reasons behind it) shows a humanity that rings through her speaking style the whole time.
After discussing the root causes of her depression, she then talks about how she figured out how to overcome her fears and anxieties, a topic she applies through her seminar. This isn’t tedious subject matter, because it’s very important. She is telling people because she doesn’t want them to forget. You can tell she wants her audience to succeed in their voiceover careers in general, and life in particular.
After discussing this topic, she talks briefly about how some other voice over actors got started. She then has a live discussion with Bill Farmer (the voice of Goofy), and how he got started. This is only a few minutes, but a delightful time, with his (and later E.G.’s other guest speakers) perspective on the subject of voiceover.
The wrap up of part 1 deals once more with fostering feelings of positive outlook, and how to do this for life in general.
PART II: The Bare Bones of Voiceover
This section was more what I expected when I purchased this video. Not that part 1 wasn’t useful, far from it. In this section, E.G. not only used her considerable knowledge to enlighten us on this topic, she also had the fortune to call on her fellow voiceover actor Debi Derryberry as well as her agent, Jeff Danis to lend strong assists and perspectives to the subject.
E.G. and Debi then proceeded into actual voiceover techniques. Everything from rudimentary home studio creation to how to use the mic and studio etiquette are covered. The methods are useful, but more interesting I thought was how the listener might then start try to think of other ways to make interesting voices they may not have otherwise considered before.
E.G. then gave several lists of coaches, demo producers, voiceover agents and books to read to help the beginning voiceover actor develop his or her craft.
Jeff Danis, EG’s agent then took the stage to give a common sense discussion on what agents look for when signing on talent. His advice in a nutshell was uniqueness, great acting skills, diversification of skills, and patience with onself. With E.G. standing besides him, it’s not a surprise he signed her early on in their careers, as she exhibits all of the skills and traits he looks for in someone.
Afterwards, A primarily open ended and candid Q&A followed.
Sometimes it was a clarification from the audience about the above topics, and sometimes new questions on voiceovers were asked. There were also new and interesting analogies from E.G. personal life that reinforced her advice on the subject matter.
Finally, the wrap up was a reiteration of hope and telling people to go for it no matter your age or circumstance. Coming late into this game myself, I found it resonating with me. And I hope it will for you too. I would highly recommend this to new voiceover actors, as well as people who would be interested in an illuminating biopic of a top notch talent in the field.