Features

Get Feedback

Listen & Give Feedback

By Category

By Type

By Script Genre

Edge Studio

Wednesday September 20

ONE DAY SPECIAL

To further your learning, get a Performance Checkup with each hour Private Training Session you sign-up for.

Want to talk with us?
Call 888-321-3343.

The Voice Actor Feedback Forum

Script Genres > English Adult > Narration > Biography

    Back to top
    19th Century Utopian Communities

    Script:

    Utopian communities in 19th-century America were considered by many to herald a new age in human civilization. Often led by charismatic leaders with high religious or secular moral ideals, these settlements experimented wildly with different models of government, marriage, labor and wealth. Hundreds of such societies littered the U.S. landscape during the 1800s, most disappearing without a trace. Here are five that made a lasting impression on life in the United States, for better or for worse.

    57 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear rogers.lindy's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-15328/script-recording-50769.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi! Lindy. Beautiful voice with good pacing and inflection. I don't know whether it's your accent but when you said 'moral', it sounded like 'more-ral' instead of 'mawrel'. The echo in your audio needs to be eliminated. Best.

    Peer Feedback:

    I enjoyed your performance and wanted to hear more about the subject.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you Arlen & Bill for your feedback.
    I had to listen several times to detect my accent on 'Moral'. Thank you for pointing that out as now I can hear it. I'm still working on getting my recording space together, so I hear the echo and hopefully with some tweaking I can eliminate that. Thanks again:)

    Back to top
    A Tribute to the Armed Forces

    Script:

    A Tribute to the Armed Forces
    This is a tribute to the heroism, loyalty and valor of our armed forces… and their families,

    author unknown.

    The night before the burial of her husband, 2nd Lt. James Cathey, United States Marine Corps, who’d been killed in Iraq, Katherine Cathey refused to leave the casket, instead, asking to sleep next to his body one final time. The Marines made a bed for her, tucking in the sheets below the flag. Before she fell asleep, she opened her laptop computer and played songs that reminded her of "Cat"… one of the Marines asked if she wanted them to continue standing watch as she slept, or to retire to just outside the door…
    "I think it would be kind of nice if you kept doing it" she said.
    "I think that's what he would have wanted".

    I’m Not sure what is more honorable: Being married to this faithful wife to the end or the Marine attentively standing next to the casket… watching over them both.

    Always remember, Freedom is not free. It’s paid for in blood
    IN HONOR OF OF OUR ARMED FORCES

    59 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Eagleye's recording

    I'm working on pacing and making sure any pauses fit the script. Also, I want to make sure there is appropriate emotion and the read doesn't sound like I'm announcing. Thanks.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-88386/script-recording-72273.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    For what it's worth, I will relate an experience that I had last night at a seminar at the Screen Actors Guild Foundation Voiceover Lab. The genre was audiobooks, but it also may be somewhat applicable to narration.

    What the director of the session kept harping on, with almost everyone's read, was to not to overly "color" the words, but attempt to have them sound as if the thoughts were coming spontaneously (which is likened to that "conversational" style for commercial copy). And secondly, to take your time by "flattening out" the read. What she meant by that was, in addition to not over-inflecting, to draw the words out and connect them one after another - and take a breath where it logically falls (usually at commas and/or periods). (Yeah, I now that sounds odd coming from me - someone who is fond of ignoring punctuation - but I still stand by that for commercial copy.)

    So, following that line of thought, the first sentence went by at a little too fast a clip. There's a lot if fundamental information there that, if you don't take strategic pauses (breaths), just seems to be a long string of words that go by all to quickly to register as a setup for the narrative. The tag, "one final time." was very effective. But then you plowed right into the next sentence without allowing that image to register, either in thought or emotionally. There's a finality (the author even uses the word) to it. Give it an ever-so-slight slight pause for the listener to ponder it.

    And that process could continue through out the narrative. Let each of the images and emotions 'land" with the listener. It is a judgement call. Too long a pauses will make it sound choppy and ponderous. But smoothing out the narrative by that "flattening" of the read mitigates the choppy-ness.

    Professional Feedback:

    Hey Eagleeye – !

    Overall, there's a solid range to your voice and fairly consistent tone to your story and yes, a few techniques and approaches to eliminate a slight feel at times that you are still reading, not telling a story to us.

    To me, it felt like what was missing, was some of that human being of you , Eagleeye, in there talking to another human being.
    Be the very fallen soldier watching his wife and then relay this experience to us in the third person format. That will have a huge impact on the listener.

    Consider offering a much more authentic tone and sound to your conversation // perhaps tell this story to us as if you were to be talking to us from your mobile phone and not from this script. It will then sound much more spontaneous as if you are literally thinking about what to say right as you are speaking the words.

    Also be mindful of the commas, and other punctuation presented in this script. It is a challenge to sound spontaneous and yet honoring our soldiers who die for our freedoms. Carry that authority with more of a heartfelt tone towards your fellow citizen (listener).

    I’ve addressed the pacing with a few comments in parenthesis (below)
    ______________________________________________________________________________________

    The night before the burial of her husband, 2nd Lt. James Cathey, United States Marine Corps, who’d been killed in Iraq, Katherine Cathey refused to leave the casket, instead, asking to sleep next to his body one final time.

    (make sure to set the tone with your first intro and lines)…

    The Marines made a bed for her, tucking in the sheets below the flag. Before she fell asleep, she opened her laptop computer and played songs that reminded her of "Cat"… one of the Marines asked if she wanted them to continue standing watch as she slept, or to retire to just outside the door…
    "I think it would be kind of nice if you kept doing it" she said.
    "I think that's what he would have wanted".

    (right here is where I’d offer just another beat or pause before you go into the next thought…and make sure it comes from Your Authentic voice describing a very poignant moment, and in essence the build to your final ‘tag’).

    I’m Not sure what is more honorable: Being married to this faithful wife to the end (slight pause) or the Marine (you made that word plural i.e. Marine(s) attentively standing next to the casket… watching over them both.

    (Another slight pause here as well)
    Always remember, Freedom is not free. It’s paid for in blood
    IN HONOR OF OF OUR ARMED FORCES

    (Convey the posture and authority of these last few words while talking to just one person; again, this will offer a subtle, yet everlasting emotional impact )

    ++Keep up the good work++

    Best, Marjorie Kouns

    Professional Feedback by Edge Studio Coach July 2, 2014 at 4:59AM

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks to you both. GREAT feedback for me to work with. MUCH appreciated!! Eagleye

    Back to top

    28 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear BrianG's recording

    Another Narration. What do you think?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-88761/script-recording-70770.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Pretty much a copy of my previous comments, with a few added things.

    Firstly, you might consider posting the script along with the recordings - so we can, at the very least, check your accuracy with text. You don't have to type the thing out. Instead of posting your recording from this page by hitting the "Free Peer Feedback" in blue text on the left, select the script from the "Script Library" page. At the bottom you will see two "click here" (one for peer and one for pro feedback) texts in blue. Click one (usually peer feedback) and the script will automatically be included with your posted recording.

    You should also consider marking your scripts for places to breathe. This was broken up quite a bit with many, many shallow breaths in mid sentence. Marking your script will force (train) you to string more words together for a better flow.

    When you got to the Noah Brooks quote, it got a little heavy handed on the emotional interpretation - just a little over the top - and it seemed just a little out of character with the rest of the narration. And (this is going to sound a little contradictory) there was no sense of suspense or wonderment leading into the quote from the previous sentence, "...then...the strangest thing happened." What Noah Brooks describes is akin to his namesake parting the Red Sea. Miraculous. But it can be stated a little more matter-of-factly (with less whispered and fluctuating inflections) and still be effective. That gaping-mouthed, wide-eyed, speechlessness.

    The trap with the Lincoln quote is to make it sound like prose and not poetry (even though the speech, in it's entirety, is quite poetic). There is a built-in rhyme at the beginning that needs to be fought off somehow, otherwise it begins to sound like "Twas the night before Christmas." And, for emphasis, make the Address a little slower paced. (They had no mics in those days to amplify the voice, so orators had to speak loudly, slowly and deliberately to be heard by the assembled masses.)

    (And just something to place in the back of your mind. Lincoln actually had a bit of a squeaky, high-pitched voice - much more like the way Daniel Day-Lewis portrayed him than the way Raymond Massey did.)

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you, James. I was attempting to make Noah and the President sound like two very different people. In Noah's words, I was thinking of making it sound like him talking rather than my reading. Tough to do when you've never actually heard that person speaking. Same with the President's words.

    I was concerned with the breaths as I was listening to it, but having never listened to an audio book I didn't know if that was a valid concern. I will take the time to work on phrasing and editing.

    My other posts had the scripts with therm and I'm not sure why these didn't. Operator error, for sure. Thanks for the tip about the link at the bottom of the scripts. That will make that process much easier.

    Back to my "studio".

    Back to top
    American Gothic

    Script:

    American Gothic
    Script:

    In 1930, an Iowa artist named Grant Wood asked his sister and his dentist
    to pose for a painting, a tribute to the rough rural stock of America.

    He dressed her in a simple frock with a white collar held close around her neck by a broach.
    He outfitted the dentist in overalls, a band collar shirt buttoned tight around the throat,
    and a dark suit jacket.

    He posed the couple, stiff as a board, in front of a plain house. The man is transformed into a Midwestern farmer, who grips a pichfork, and stares straight ahead.
    The woman looks away.

    The painting, "American Gothic," became one of the most enduring images of the decade
    an icon of the spirit that survived the hard times of "The Depression."

    51 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear bnstone's recording

    Needing the practice...

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-2270/script-recording-26368.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice! sounds like a finished piece for a PBS special. I like the slight southern accent and fiddle sawing away in the background. fits perfectly! Nicely conversational and a great narration.
    Very nicely done. Not a single thing to nit-pick.

    Peer Feedback:

    Very nice. You made the same changes to the library script that I did.
    "Board stiff" is misleading. And we know they don't drink! It's a great piece to work. American Gothic has a history of being caricatured. Great visual to work with.
    You let down on the first "painting," "stock," and "spirit."

    Peer Feedback:

    Nicely read. Pace was very good. Sounded like a polished piece!

    Back to top

    29 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Al Urkawich's recording

    Nothing like having a day off to do these!! Anyway....this is my version. Anyone else want to try?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-10257/script-recording-31118.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hey Ansel,
    You have a warm friendly delivery. Very enjoyable. I liked the EQ balance, it made it easy to listen to.

    Peer Feedback:

    Pacing pretty good...but you slipped (more like shifted quickly) into and out of announcer. "His photographs, his letters, his lobbying of Congress, presidents and the National Park Service, spanned seven decades" was WAY announcer guy.

    Maybe if you drank maybe 6 beers it would relax the announcer a bit. ;-)

    When you read the part about his personal life...his friends and his dedication to them etc....you could have shifted into a more personal tone there to reflect the subject a little bit more IMO.

    I was wondering...due to the number of submissions today...if you were off today. You confirmed. LOL

    Peer Feedback:

    hahaha...thanks Ton

    getting there!!! Yeah....now where's my wine? That should do it!!

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice Narration voice Al... but I do agree with Tom...that second sentence took on a "life of its own." Great insight into the copy...just try to keep it steady....thanks for sharing!

    Peer Feedback:

    I appreciate you guys hammering me on the announcer read....I have to work on this and I'll give it another try!!

    Thanks for being honest! You have no idea how long I've heard this about my reads!

    Peer Feedback:

    I enjoyed it too, Al. Have you tried performing without the headphones? I've found it helps me relax and sound more conversational. Not trying to perform and produce at the same time as you are with headphones on. Helps you focus on just the performance.

    Peer Feedback:

    Problem I have with performing without headphones (which I always do) is that I try and do the voice I envision in the final output. I would like to hear if anyone else does that!

    Peer Feedback:

    Tom, not sure I understand the problem you're describing. Why would wearing or not wearing headphones change this? If anything, I'd think wearing them only makes it worse. And at least you're focusing on your performance and not production issues.

    Peer Feedback:

    What I was trying to say, Bill is that I don't wear headphones so I don't get distracted by the playback. I try and inflect/affect my voice and hear it in the open and I think phones would make me more self-conscious...it does when I sing. If someone's messed with the volume controls and I suddenly hear myself too loudly, it makes me very self-aware of blasting people out and I can't help but back off.

    Peer Feedback:

    I agree Tom.....no headphones is the way to go while doing these....I think they might be distracting.....but its amazing how much you can hear on playback. I used to use the "Noise Induction" feature on Cool Edit until I listened (after a few people pointed out artifacts in my recordings) with headphones and heard the "watery" noise for myself! No more "Noise Reduction" for me.....now I shut off the oil burner and the refridge if they come on.

    Peer Feedback:

    You have a very nice warm rich voice which fit this piece well. Energy went a little to high when talking about Congress and the Presidents. Very nice read!

    Back to top
    Ansel Adams

    Script:

    Ansel Adams
    Ansel Adams, more than any other individual, brought Yosemite and the national park idea to the American people. His photographs, his letters, his lobbying of Congress, presidents and the National Park Service, spanned seven decades. They served, and still serve, to make millions aware of Yosemite’s beauty and to call attention to the dangers it faces. A craggy-faced man with a sharp nose bent slightly to the left, Ansel Adams was gracious, warm, and welcoming. He made close friends and kept them; he welcomed new friends into his life. He was focused, energetic, and filled with good humor – a master of the pun. He cared about people, he cared about his friends, and he cared passionately about Yosemite.

    75 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Buddy Bortz's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-95930/script-recording-90052.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Buddy - There were some wild fluctuations in your tone and inflections that distracted me. A lot of words that you ended on an upbeat, to me, felt like they should have come down as a conclusion of a thought, instead. The word, "beauty" in the fourth line is one that really stood out. I think your voice is spot-on for narration, and your reading is solid - just watch the variations in tone and emphasis. Let's see what someone with more experience chimes in with. :) I look forward to hearing more from you.

    Peer Feedback:

    TomJ,
    Thanks for the feedback! I've gone back and "dialed it back" a bit. Flows smoother I think.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Buddy. I like the character of your voice. Watch the P's a little bit. There's also some likely mouth noise after American people, faces and left.

    Back to top
    Ansel Adams

    Script:

    Ansel Adams, more than any other individual, brought Yosemite and the national park idea to the American people. His photographs, his letters, his lobbying of Congress, presidents and the National Park Service, spanned seven decades. They served, and still serve, to make millions aware of Yosemite’s beauty and to call attention to the dangers it faces. A craggy-faced man with a sharp nose bent slightly to the left, Ansel Adams was gracious, warm, and welcoming. He made close friends and kept them; he welcomed new friends into his life. He was focused, energetic, and filled with good humor – a master of the pun. He cared about people, he cared about his friends, and he cared passionately about Yosemite.

    69 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear cwalling's recording

    Looking for any and all constructive feedback. Thanks!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-120574/script-recording-96993.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    First off, I liked overall the warmth of your tone, most of your emphasis choices, your consistent volume, and your basic pacing.

    Your regional accent seems ok for this copy (very prominent in "any" and the first "Yosemite"). You got a little unclear/soft on "lobbying of Congress," possibly due to running short of breath.

    And I felt energy drop out at the long description of Ansel Adams, perking back up somewhat on "a master of the pun." Being alert to carrying through meaning in phrases like "They served --> to make millions aware" might help you better convey the meaning intended. (It's not the sense of "served" as would be "They served, and still serve, hamburgers.") The complex final sentence with the repetition of "cared" 3 times was a pretty good pass at it, although the first part was a bit off for me; how would you normally say "He cared about people," when you really feel it?
    Overall, a bit more natural variation of your pacing/phrasing would help make this read more conversational.

    I enjoyed listening to your voice, I wish you all success!

    Peer Feedback:

    Recording quality is good, as far as I can tell.
    I could listen to your voice on a variety of genres of voiceovers! I personally like the accent, which isn't too thick. You have a kindly, knowledgable and gentle way, which to my ears, is VERY marketable! Here's the part I'd encourage you to look at: the 2nd sentence. That is a very important part of the script. It leads to the importance of the 3rd sentence. I suggest you treat the "laundry list" with more emphasis and keep it going through the 3rd sentence. The next part, the description of the man, Ansel Adams, I feel you did very well. Give emphasis where it's due.
    I'd love my family to listen to audiobooks read by you, watch a movie with your voice narrating something historical, or to go to an IMax theatre and hear you narrate a documentary!

    Back to top

    29 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Henry Dewing's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-6638/script-recording-33196.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Very distinctive voice; every word was clear and understandable; a minor "click" or two.
    A real documentary voice and read. Thank you.
    John Sipple

    Back to top

    71 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Buddy Bortz's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-95930/script-recording-90251.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You've got a little bit of a Tom Brokaw thing going on...at least if you compare it to comical attempts at doing Tom Brokaw. I'm not trying to be mean, but by it I refer to your tendency to kind of draw out the ends of syllables into the beginnings of the next ones. The enunciation needs some precision from what's presented here. It comes across as a little lazy diction to me. My personal opinion, of course and I'm trying to be constructive. But I think if you listen to other attempts at this read and compare it to yours, you might hear what I mean.

    Peer Feedback:

    There's a pattern to the read that could be a little tiring and/or trying to the listener over time. It's that "sigh", a kind of aspiration of air, and "hitches" in the middle of sentences that sounds more like an exasperated commentary on what you're reading rather than an actual technique of narrative style choice. I'm sure that that was not your intention, but that's what it sounds like to me. Just my 2c.

    A little mouth noise here and there. Plosives aren't all that egregious, but there are a few here and there as well, just enough to puff in my ears if I were listening with earbuds. They can be taken care of with a little surgical editing by fading in or lowering the volume of that tiny piece of the wave form.

    All of that said: This kind of narration/audiobook genre is something that fits you very well.

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice read overall. You might try to hit your consonants a bit more clearly, but very good as is. Nice, relaxed pace. Perhaps try to imagine being in that world, in one of Ansel Adams' photographs, I would like to hear more of the awe-inspiring beauty of that world in your read. Maybe imagine speaking to one person when you read the copy, make it a little more personal. Good recording quality as far as I can hear.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for all your comments, and taking the time. Believe me, nothing is taken personal, but constructive in a helpful way. Thank you all!

    Back to top
    Babe Ruth

    Script:

    Babe Ruth’s presence still looms over Yankee Stadium ... he set countless marks that still stand unchallenged. The crowds loved him, and for 22 years, he gave them more than their money’s worth. He hit the most home runs with a life total of 714. He received the most bases on balls of any man in baseball, 2,056. And he struck out the most times, too, 1,330. His total of 60 home runs in one season, made in 1927, stood for 34 years until in 1961, Roger Maris of the New York Yankees pooled 61 homers, but in a longer playing season. The Babe’s lifetime batting average of .342 is among the highest seven in baseball history.

    154 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Jeff Hoffman's recording

    Biography??? Trying out different narrations... Thanks for the feedback!! Jeff

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/Babe Ruth.L.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Your read was very clear and your voice is very pleasant, I just felt the pace might be a little slow, maybe just pick up the pace of the read, other than that perfect! Nice work!

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Jeff,
    You're a good reader. But you need to do more than read here. The topic Babe Ruth is larger than life. What I hear is you reading and highlighting certain words or numbers. You've got to do more than that. You need to make this story come alive. There are many tools in your vocal arsenal, but you have chosen to use only one. reflect on it. You know how to read. Dig into your vocal tool chest and give us more.

    Peer Feedback:

    Very well read. I do agree there needs to be a little more life brought to it.

    Back to top
    Barbara Walters

    Script:

    Barbara Walters
    Barbara was born 73 years ago to a nightclub owner and article producer Lou Walters and his wife Dena. The couple had already lost a son and had an older daughter who was mildly retarded. The family bounced back and forth from Boston to Miami to New York, where they lived in penthouses until her father lost his fortune in the mid 1950's. Barbara, who'd just graduated from Sarah Lawrence College, helped support her parents with her income from a secretarial job. By 1964 she'd become a "Today girl" - her job was essentially to make the male anchor look good, and to look good herself. Eventually, she became the cohost. A couple of dozen pre-Oscar interviews later, Walters signed on as cohost of 20/20. In 1997 she also became co-executive producer of the View- a responsibility she'll keep when, after 25 years, she gives up her weekly 20/20 gig.

    86 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear eanderson2007's recording

    Interested in narration... I have lots of work to do. Looking for performance feedback.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-3414/script-recording-88959.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Excellent read! You might want to watch the little bit of "sing-songy" rhythm that happens in a few places, but overall it's quite good. You might also want to check the status of your info, when doing a piece on a well known public figure. Ms. Walters will be 87 in September, a fact known by many; hence, the first sentence of your piece (about her having been born "73 years ago") makes it sound rather dated. Keep up the great work!

    Professional Feedback:

    Hello 'E'
    Super read on this bio. Sometimes hard to do when the person is of such VIP/legacy status. And here's a couple of observations from this ear:

    Even though it is a biographical/documentary type narration you still want to approach this story as if you are telling it to one person and 'in' person. People love to hear about other people and your tone and resonance has that appeal. NOw to tweak it even more with these suggestions:

    Less articulation, more flow with your phrases. There is a build in this copy in chrono time as well as all her career and gender issues that she totally conquered and appears to be a leading mentor and force to many other journalists and anchors (both men and women) today.

    To avoid some of that 'sing-song' I'd be much more homespun with a sincerity and manner of sharing such humble beginnings and in some instances, hardships into a life-long living legend that still causes a stir even today!

    Tricky ? Yes, and no! I'd tell this story as if you yourself are seeing her growing up in those cities/penthouse apartments, working to pay money to her parents!! and also the bittersweet times she lost her siblings.

    That does not come across - it sounds too much like you are going through the motions of an intriguing story and not add your personal human emotions and feelings on some of the sad and happy situations that you are telling the listener....you can lessen the polished and articulated for a more natural and flowing conversation that takes place over many years right to the present (and again keep that listener right with you) as if they are also sitting on the sofa hearing all about Barbara , Yes??

    On the tech and voice tech side;;;;; Initial mouth noise (make sure you hydrate at least 2-3 hours ahead!! and/or drink lemon juice or have a wedge of green apple prior)
    Voice volume, fine!
    with a little more practice (and less trying so hard!) you will find a signature flow to your own voice that will feel effortless in your delivery)

    Keep up the good work.

    Best,
    Marjorie Kouns/Coach

    Professional Feedback by Edge Studio Coach April 12, 2016 at 1:34PM

    Peer Feedback:

    the cadence of this read was a little off -- it sounded like it was halfway between a narration of a biography (factual storytelling) and an Entertainment Tonight biopic (more announcer-promo sounding).
    In this case, the depth of the facts suggests a more storytelling, flatter read might be the right way to go.

    DS.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi,
    Great vocal tone. Very pleasant.
    Either of these is probably correct but I think I would have liked Eh-ssentially vs Ee-ssentially.(goes to TxTom's over-articulation case) One thing that kind of stuck out for me was the intonation used on "...mildly retarded..". Kind of made it sound like it was a good thing like "...virtuoso violinist..." would have fit in there better. It just kind of seemed like you were working with an arbitrary rhythm in your delivery vs being extra conscious about the content of what was being delivered.
    Overall, very nice.

    - touzet -

    Peer Feedback:

    A little sing-song in a couple of spots. Where you listed the locations they moved to and from, you sounded bored...like you telling the story for the upteenth time and were a little annoyed in having to tell it once more. One definite trait you'll need to work out/on is over-articulation. "A" Today girl should have the less formal "uh" for that a. "And article" in the first like also demonstrates the too articulate delivery. Good practice.

    Back to top

    25 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Chris Coulter's recording

    This script has some long phrases and sentences in it and I'm working a lot on my breathing in that kind of read right now. Suggestions on breath support and silencing intake of breath along with all other comments on performance and recording quality are welcome.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/barbra.MP3

    Peer Feedback:

    To me, the first sentence sounded a bit flat - pitch and energy-wise.Try that sentence sounding very happy to tell me about this.... punch (emphasize) "memorable" a little bit. Try going up in pitch on "picture" and then a mini-pause Then back down stretching out and smiling on "The Way We Were". then quickly into "brought her a 1973....... then punch "Academy Award nomination" and "Best Actress." If that makes no sense...and it might not, just try to be a bit more happy and excited to be telling about this and be sure to emphasize what you think might be important. Play with it. Record and listen back a bunch. The folks on here are really good at critiquing this stuff and may have way different ideas than I do but you generally will get some very useful critiques.

    Peer Feedback:

    I'm going to record and play with it. I think your comments about lifting, emphasizing and smiling make a lot of sense. Thanks so much.

    Peer Feedback:

    I thought this was awesome, Chris! I agree that the energy is a touch low, but I hear you hitting words in a very natural way (The Way We Were, A Star Was Born, memorable, successful, first, benefit, six, certified, quadruple platinum). You sounded relaxed. I suspect you were backing off of the energy a bit to counter the other habits you've been working on and now you can add a little back in. This had a natural feel to it, especially the breathing. Yeah, you breathed, but you kept a natural flow to it, just taking the amount of breath you needed for each clause so that you weren't gasping or running out of air--at least that's how it sounded to me. There was no obviousness to it that pulled me out of the moment.

    I had to crank up the volume on my headphones to hear a faint rasp from your fingers on the page (What mic are you using? I wonder if there's a less sensitive mic or more directional one that would help, too.). Or a platform (like a lap desk for using on a couch, but resting on your desk), that your copy and hands could sit under, with maybe acoustical foam on the platform of it or glued on under.

    Anyway, great work!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, Tonya. I'm using an Olympus digital recorder and I'm using its built-in mic. I can lower the sensitivity with a setting on the recorder and try it that way. I often record meetings and do field recordings with high sensitivity and thought my practice recordings would benefit from having the sensitivity that high. The recorder has three sentitivity settings for the mic so I'll try lowering it and see what happens.

    Back to top
    Beethoven Symphonies

    Script:

    Beethoven
    There can be few people who haven’t heard Beethoven’s name, the famous first four notes of his fifth symphony, or the first strains of his “Ode to Joy.” Beethoven is one of the most revered composers in the history of Western music.
    Why? He possessed a unique gift for communication. He radiated an absolute directness that makes his music totally accessible. The sheer emotional power of his music is readily understood. His revolutionary compositional ideas are not hard to appreciate.
    Beethoven is widely recognized as one of the greatest of all symphonists – the composer who ripped apart the regimented formulas of classical symphonic style. His nine symphonies are the cornerstone of orchestral literature. The revolution that they represent influenced composers for the next hundred years and more. It was a revolution on every level: harmonic, melodic, rhythmic, formal, dramatic, self-expressive, and emotional. Beethoven led the charge to a totally new era. He booted out the restraint of the 18th-century classism and ushered in romantic self-expression. His symphonic offspring were the first statesmen of this new, musical democracy.

    Text by Professor Robert Greenberg

    28 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear jamesromick's recording

    Elton has inspired me to do something long form. This is a text from the introduction to a lecture series on Beethoven's Nine Symphonies by Professor Robert Greenberg taken from The Great Courses catalogue. I am aware of some sibilance. I was getting over a cold and had a pretty thick tongue the day I recorded it. I tried to take as much of it out as I was able. Beethoven is my favorite composer and I hope you enjoy Beethoven's music as much ad I do. These are excerpts from Symphonies 3, 5 & 9.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-21601/script-recording-48694.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice work. I found myself visualizing an orchestra playing along with you as if this was a television program I was watching. Maybe from an editing perspective you could start back in with the script a little sooner after we hear the beginning of Ode To Joy, only because we still get to feel/hear the music during this story you eloquently tell. I guess if there aren't any time constraints then let the music ride. Maybe edit in specific snippets from symphonies to further emphasis the words dramatic and emotional. Just ideas, as your vocal framework kept me interested with the music and words being married together.

    Peer Feedback:

    James, I really enjoyed this read. I could hear your love of the music come through clearly. The only criticism I have is that there were places in the read where the music overwhelmed the volume of your voice. In others your voice sounded a bit muffled (maybe the cold?). But overall, an excellent and informative read!

    E

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks guys.

    Richard - I actually considered cutting in more snippets of other familiar thematic material from more symphonies - but there's just sooooo much material. I wound up spending more time listening to Beethoven than I did working on these 2+ minutes of introductory copy. And I just hate not to complete a musical phrase - I wanted the first 8 notes of the 5th, but that didn't for the copy's idea. I just got a little self indulgent, I guess.

    Elton - I put a lot of bass in the voice mix to cover the sibilance so as not to distract from the jist of the whole package. Still fiddling with the software and working out my engineering kinks.

    Back to top
    Beethoven

    Script:

    Of all the hundreds of symphonies that have been composed, none can rival in popularity or emotional interest the nine great symphonic works that Beethoven wrote. Beethoven took music off the pedestal of formal beauty, where Haydn and Mozart had left it, and immersed it in the whirlpool of life. He roughened it up until it began to do what he expected it to do ... to express problems, evoke emotions, move and struggle exuberantly. More people can respond at once to a Beethoven symphony than to any other. Many have written fine symphonies, but Beethoven’s remain in a class by themselves, as invaluable a part of our heritage as are Shakespeare’s plays.

    25 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear eliehershfield's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/Beethoven.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You sound conversational and informative, perhaps on a self-guided tour I would be listening to. I would like a little pause before "More people can respond..." as you sound a tiny bit rushed there.

    Peer Feedback:

    A little fast for my taste. Also some mouth noise here and there. The pitch level got a little high at the end.

    Peer Feedback:

    I have to say I don't really like the push you do at "the nine great symphonic works" as a tonal change to inject some enthusiasm. That would work in a classroom as a teacher....but as a VO reading a narration piece, it's definitely over the top. You do it a few times in the read. IMO, not good technique in the narration genre.

    Peer Feedback:

    Sounded a little too fast for me, as well. Maybe slow down the pace and back off the inflection ("rrrroughened it up!"). I also noticed a little muddling of "rival in popularity or emotional interest...", maybe a hint of an accent in there? However, your voice does convey genuine interest in the topic, which is important.

    As far as the recording quality, I noticed a little mouth noise, and a lot of reverb. You might think about setting up some foam, blankets, etc. to dampen the echo.

    Peer Feedback:

    I was a little surprised by the push on "nine symphonies" and in other places but I attributed it to my impression that you were reading it as a guided tour or documentary for children. The fast pace would have worked for that, too.

    Peer Feedback:

    I agree it's a bit fast and you push a bit much in a couple of parts, but I loved the energy and enthusiasm. I think that voice personality could really work for you in a world of flatter, more professional narrations and that not everyone could pull it off. I thought you sounded like a teacher who's really enthused about his topic and is maybe a bit of a character who likes to ham it up with his students. Pull it back a touch and take out a spot or two where it gets more of a voice-over-voice on you (near the end), and I'd hire you, absolutely.

    Back to top
    Beethoven

    Script:

    Beethoven

    Of all the hundreds of symphonies that have been composed, none can rival in popularity or emotional interest the nine great symphonic works that Beethoven wrote. Beethoven took music off the pedestal of formal beauty, where Haydn and Mozart had left it, and immersed it in the whirlpool of life. He roughened it up until it began to do what he expected it to do ... to express problems, evoke emotions, move and struggle exuberantly. More people can respond at once to a Beethoven symphony than to any other. Many have written fine symphonies, but Beethoven’s remain in a class by themselves, as invaluable a part of our heritage as are Shakespeare’s plays.

    26 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear mhoffman97@verizon.net's recording

    Hi Kristin: I would appreciate your totally honest input with my abovementioned recordings. I need to know what I'm doing right and what I'm doing wrong. I enter the script contests each week (except for last week) and I never win. I realize it's a different contest each week but sometimes (not to sound conceited) I feel I did a better read than some of the winners. Not that I don't appreciate the fact that I'm new to the business and don't have that much of a trained ear yet as the pros at Edge do, but what am I missing? What am I not getting, hearing, understanding about my reads? My second script is something I sent to audible.com a few weeks ago, "Light on Snow" (approx. 3 minutes in length) and I haven't heard anything back from them. I really enjoy reading aloud - I'm a substitute teacher during the day and frequently read to my students. Did I send something in too soon, did I mess up my chances of getting a job at audible in the future because I sent something in already? I will send this script to you in a separate email if that's OK since I didn't have a spot for it here. I realize I'm concentrating on two different genres. I know I need to focus on one to start and then gradually grow into others. I enjoy both but, honestly, in which genre am I more marketable? Pick me apart, Kristin, truly. I really want to know. Thanks so much. Marie Hoffman

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-14327/script-recording-49360.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    you have a relaxing voice and you inform well keep uploading your scripts and practicing .

    Peer Feedback:

    There is a soft and breathy tone to your voice. Are you really close to the mic? You mentioned above that you like reading to your students. What age are they? Because this sounds like you're reading a lullaby to small kids.

    I mentioned this before on someone else's reading of this script. Beethoven is probably my favorite composer of all time and I have studied him and his symphonies quite a bit. He was a brooding and boorish man and his symphonies have immense musical power. He broke away from the Classical compositional traditions and blazed a new trail in transition toward the Romantic period in music history. The read should reflect all of that. The single line in the text ("He roughened it up...") reflects that.

    IMHO - Your voice quality and delivery doesn't fit the material for this particular read. I'm not trying to be cruel, just honest.

    Back to top

    15 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear ajairaj's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/BenFranklin-ajai-raj.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Aj, I really enjoyed the read. The sound quality was a bit low, not sure of the kit you are using to record. Careful on articulation, at times you finished pronouncing a word correctly but rushed into the next one a bit quick which made it sound a bit off beat. When you have those types of connecting words I find that slowing down a bit help to bridge that gap and smoothen it out. I have been guilty of it myself, I became aware of it (through help here), and kept practicing. I think you have some real potential!

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi AJ
    I think I agree with Daniel... It seemed a little rushed to mee and therefore a little unfocused. After listening I needed to go back to see what this was titled. Try to pick ONE person to speak to and imagine that they are there with you!!!
    Nice read otherwise!!!!
    Jeff

    Back to top
    Ben Franklin

    Script:

    Ben Franklin preached the joy of work and practiced what he preached. As a young man, he sometimes worked all night to finish a promised job on time. When he bought paper for his printing shop, he was not too proud to trundle it home himself in a wheelbarrow. On his first journey to Philadelphia, though he had paid his passage, he volunteered to help row the boat down the Delaware, and proved himself to be so useful, that the boatmen didn’t want to take his money. “Diligence is the mother of good luck,” he wrote, “and God gives all things to industry.”

    40 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear TedVoInSpain's recording

    Scott did this when he heard TxTom do it, I heard Scotts and TxTom's version and wanted to see if I could get a viable entry. This is not as good as theirs, but perhaps a valid take on the material. Appreciating all feedback! Nodo420

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-8990/script-recording-27645.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Nodo,

    Excellent! Loved the music bed and could easily be part of the History Channel or on PBS.
    The only thing I would change just a tad bit, is adjusting the music to a lower level, so we can hear more of your voice. Otherwise, great job!

    Best of luck, LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    I liked it, Nodo, but your last line got drowned out by the music. Fixing that would improve the read. Good one.

    Peer Feedback:

    Yes thought I was watching the PBS channel, convincing read. And yes the music distracts at the volume level. Mike

    Peer Feedback:

    Beyond TxTom's comment about the music, I would also say that your first line needed to be a bit more sing-songy. You said it in a matter-of-fact way, and I feel like it should be more like a "common phrase," if you understand what I mean. Other than that, your read was really good!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for all the great feedback! THE DARN MUSIC!!! I have to change my thought processing. I agree TxTom, I hit the up and out on the music just a bit early. Poor edit on my part. And I'm a Hard-Head, so thanks for telling me the music is too loud. I'd set the music right on 2 clips, then instead of -12db I thought, HEY, it will sound good at -6db too. There's the inexperience showing.
    And Jmm, I have to laugh. I am sometimes a little anal in trying NOT to commit the VO Sins of "sing-songy" "reading the script" "mechanical delivery" etc. I agree, that could have been more effective in this case. But I have to chuckle! Thanks all for the words and listens!

    Peer Feedback:

    Personally I didn't care for the music bed. It's too classical for a story about Benjamin Franklin "not too proud to trundle it home himself in a wheelbarrow". A bed more suited to someone pitching in to help row a boat down river would be preferred. The bed used is better applied to an upscale automobile.

    Peer Feedback:

    after listening to it through all the edits and stuff, I had a niggling feeling about the sound bed and you expressed it perfectly Richurd. The one thing that really sets Tom's and Scott's was the music bed (apart from their superb performances). Those/you guys really make it look easy. Thanks for the comment

    Back to top
    Ben Franklin

    Script:

    Ben Franklin
    Ben Franklin preached the joy of work and practiced what he preached. As a young man, he sometimes worked all night to finish a promised job on time. When he bought paper for his printing shop, he was not too proud to trundle it home himself in a wheelbarrow. On his first journey to Philadelphia, though he had paid his passage, he volunteered to help row the boat down the Delaware, and proved himself to be so useful, that the boatmen didn’t want to take his money. “Diligence is the mother of good luck,” he wrote, “and God gives all things to industry.”

    17 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Scott Martin's recording

    Trying the biography genre for the first time. How does it sound? Any "room noise"? Any and all feedback is most welcome. All the best, Scott

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-8309/script-recording-34778.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hey Scott, very nice work. I do hear some flutter echo in this recording. Also, I'd suggest you keep the dynamics more narrow than this, unless you intended it for a young audience, say elementary school kids. Your inflections make sense but are too extreme for adult documentary. Softer, closer, and more subtle inflections. You definitely have the voice for this genre.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks Bill for the comments.

    Waiting for the builder to come and work on my studio area, so I am still in a big room where there is some reflection.

    My target was a young audience, as if I was teaching to a group of teenagers.

    Appreciate your comments.

    All the best,

    Scott

    PS Why did you pull your Antarctica spot? Are you going to post another version?

    Peer Feedback:

    How exciting, you're building a studio area?! You've hired a builder?! Would love to hear more.

    I think you nailed this script for a younger audience. Very nice.

    I took another shot at that Antarctica copy and worked on sounding more connected. Would appreciate your feedback. Thanks, Scott.

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice one Scott! I know how hard you are working dude! Something I might pass on, first and only, where the " " marks the script he's thinking, fine if you want to use an "other than narrator voice" but instead of changing the tone so dramatically, try really varying the pacing, or use less space between words. Or it could even be grandiose in a (mock) deeper tone... but less tone, more changing tempo or rhythm does it in my book.
    Lets chat soon, Nodo420

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks Nodo for the suggestions and compliment! Thanks Bill for the encouragement. Appreciate the feedback guys!

    All the best,

    Scott

    Back to top

    22 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear BrianG's recording

    Taking a stab at narration. Please give a listen.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-88761/script-recording-70767.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Brian,

    Glad to see that you changed your handle.

    As for the read: It sounds like you're reading - I can actually see (in my mind) your eyes moving across the page. There is little personal or emotional investment in the script - I'm not getting how you want me to feel about Mr. Cosby.

    Even really dry narration (this is not, but possibly can be) is a little about manipulation - manipulating the listener by the POV you present to them.

    Think of Peter Graves on the Biography series. He pulled you along on the story of someone's life - the twists and turns - and always made it anticipatory and interesting.

    Also, if this was (as it is) a biography, then YOU (meaning your voice) are not the star. If this is for TV, there will be visuals (stills and clips) of Mr. Cosby's career. You're there to support that, not to overshadow it. Therefore, IMHO, you gave this too much voice (volume-wise) - too much of yourself - and that made it a little too much "in your face" for me. Only my 2c.

    Did you see images of him in your mind as you spoke? Or were you more concerned with the words on the page (getting them right, not flubbing, etc.)?

    Peer Feedback:

    Brian, you breathe a lot in the middle of sentences and as a result, you create some phrasing that's not conversational. It's important to deliver sentences in a smooth and conversational flow. If you break from that, things often begin to sound like you're reading words off a page. The phrasing creates a choppy feel as well. By that, I mean a real start and stop pattern. Your Lincoln read has the same pattern, btw. As a technical note, you should take the time to edit the breaths out in most reads. They become distracting.

    A strong suggestion I would make for you is to practice doing some long sentences in one breath and make it sound even from beginning to end. By that, I mean that a lot of people--after taking a deep breath--often come in a little strong before they settle into a more natural reading volume/pattern. It's called breath control. I have practiced doing long tongue twisters in one breath. It's challenging, but it helps you keep things even through the thinner parts of your breath. Good luck and keep up the practice.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you, both. I will take these thoughts on board and work on these reads.

    I did see him in my head. He is one of my favorite comedians and I could see him in both TV shows referenced.

    My intent with this read was to do it as I've heard on "Biography" shows.

    Back to top
    Bill Cosby

    Script:

    With numerous awards to his credit, Bill Cosby is one of the top names in comedy. As an actor, comedian, writer, and producer, he helped break down racial barriers on television in the 1960s with “I Spy” and later with “The Cosby Show”. Cosby grew up in Philadelphia's Germantown neighborhood as the oldest of four boys and attended Temple University. While at Temple, Cosby landed a job as a bartender at a coffee house. He told jokes there, and eventually started filling in for the house comedian from time to time at a nearby club. Soon, Cosby started performing in New York City and, in 1963, he made an appearance on The Tonight Show, which helped introduce him to a national audience.

    53 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear MusicJunkieK1's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-131/script-recording-65174.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You have a wonderfully rich voice. Your pacing, enunciation and interpretation are quite good. The quality of the recording is professional. Great job.

    Peer Feedback:

    Very nice voice! Pacing is nice, but maybe could be a little more relaxed? Other than that, it sounds good! :)

    Peer Feedback:

    See?
    Progress.

    Back to top

    66 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear sentry40335's recording

    Self-proclaimed LEAST tech-savvy guy on the planet, I didn't get this entry into this month's contest due to simple idiocy. Spending a lot of time trying to learn about processing, particularly as regards my Tascam DP-24SD. So, after the deadline, I had the track "available" and found that Audacity has rather nice compression function. Applied a bit (2.5:1, attack:2.93 sec, release: 11.7 sec.). Now if only I understood all I've been reading (and seeing on DVD tutorials) and adjust on faith, I'd maybe feel less like a newcomer on Ellis Island. Please advise re: more reading/tutorials. Thanks.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-123511/script-recording-95731.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Voice is strong, authoritative and clear! Good pace, too.

    Peer Feedback:

    This was a pretty good read. I had entered the contest just in time. I am also new to the whole editing and such of the recordings. But I think I am getting the hang of it as well.
    It was very smooth.
    Keep up the good work.
    Ken P.

    Back to top
    Cary Grant

    Script:

    Cary Grant's classy film persona and peerless timing are so ingrained in our collective psyche that we tend to confuse the man with the myth. So good was he at playing the icon known as Cary Grant that it was often said he always played the same part - himself. The truth is that he was an underrated actor who brought depth and dimension to his characters and he never played himself. Of all the roles he created, Cary Grant was his greatest invention.

    56 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear kdwsunshine's recording

    Newbie here. I don't have any gear yet so please disregard extra noise! Also, still learning my recording program and got frustrated so ignore those two big breaths. ; ) Really just looking for performance feedback and looking forward to it!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5873/script-recording-29168.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Ms. Sunshine, you rocked! Newbie perhaps, but talented and marketable, in my amateur opinion, for sure! The softer, airier quality of your read is very smooth. On the word 'truth' you spoke completely 'on voice' (less air) with a lowered, slightly fluctuating pitch and the resonance really got my attention. I would have liked more of the read to be of that timbre. Diction was excellent, only slightly tense, a few more practice runs and your tongue would hit the consonants as perfectly, yet also seemingly effortlessly as well. I had to listen a few times to find something on which to critique constructively, yet each time was blown away by your speaking skills. Thank you very much. Way to set the bar really high!

    Peer Feedback:

    Wow! Thanks! And *whew*. I was nervous! I'll listen through with your comments in mind and remember them. Thanks again for listening!

    Peer Feedback:

    Ya, I agree. I think that as a performance it was very good. Maybe just a tad fast, but nice relaxed voice. Not flawless however as you pointed out with the breaths, but overall a really nice read. Keep at it! Nodo420

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh, Nodo! I'm thrilled to hear from you. I've been looking at all your critiques and listening to your reads and I was hoping you'd take a listen. Thank you for taking the time. Interested to read that it seems a little fast. I'll try it slower and see how I do. Thanks again!

    Peer Feedback:

    Just saw this, thank you for the kind words. Your last read really blew me away. thing is, I was just watching a video here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXOHBRTgeRo&feature=related Marc Cashman in his podcast "Giving Depth to Words" well, that last read you did was a study, on this very thing.
    Something else I just noticed, I believe I said in an earlier post that you sounded like Kathy Bates, (completely complementary, she's a true pro) well in the newer one, you don't. What strikes me is that they both stand on their own if that makes sense. I don't know if you planned that or if you are even aware of it but develop it! It's a gift!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks Nodo! These are the only two reads I've put up so that Kathy Bates compliment wasn't for me but I'll take it! Just naturally, I have a lot of dynamics and tones in my voice so I can't claim credit. But I'm more and more aware of how helpful that will be in this line of work so I plan to really play with it all. I'm going to watch that youtube link to see what I stumbled onto with my other read. ; )

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh dear, yes, I did mistake you for a recording I heard by sabrinasvoice... but yet again, when I listen to this, I hear what professional timing you have and it's a tone like Kathy Bates!. And you mentioned that you sang prior to this, your voice is very well tuned, and I'll bet you have a huge range of those tunes. I'd love to hear you tell a story in one of your next recordings. Music is about stories, especially country music. I have a dramatic story in my portfolio (meager as it is) and an early recording of "holes" that got nice reviews (it was like my 3rd recording)
    http://www.edgestudio.com/feedback-forum/english-adult/audiobook#recordi...
    http://www.edgestudio.com/script/3971#recording-26521
    When I listen to Holes, I recognize it for what it isn't as much as for what it is. I see all the flaws, but Gillian Anderson saw what it could be. The later one, well, not perfect but getting better. And that's the key isn't it? :)

    Peer Feedback:

    I've got to run up to the office for a bit so I don't have the time to give this that I need to. But I'll be back in a couple of hours and will do it better justice. With just the one listen of yours, I like what you did with it. And I have a couple of book scripts I've been looking at so I'll definitely throw one up here soon. I'll be back later!

    Peer Feedback:

    Great voice, and I liked the pace and performance.
    You've got talent.

    Peer Feedback:

    Great! I'll so look forward to hearing it sometime soon. Contact me directly nodo420(at)gmail.com in the future and we'll close this thread. I would invite you to look and register here as well. www.voiceovers-com. It isn't like here. Feedback can be very pointed there. But the information I've read there is invaluable. It's run by a few of the industry giants, and the members there are working pros for the most part. The general rules are "if you are not a working voice artist, ask for help in the appropriate section and avoid giving your opinion. Read and learn, ask questions" oh and practice! Post your recordings in "The hot seat" if you dare. I haven't dared yet :) get in touch

    Peer Feedback:

    Nodo,, the VoiceOver.com , is there a charge for that? Sounds cool.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, dfsaund! I appreciate it.

    Peer Feedback:

    very nice read,, you mention your program ,, if its audacity,, many of us can help with questions,, and there are a ton of vids on line , youtube abd alike. You may also look at the cheap sound proofing vids online,, it will make what equipment you have, sound better,, not so airy,,and echoy . But its a great start,, you should do well

    Peer Feedback:

    I love your voice and delivery. You know how to read aline! I can't help you with your sound problems, but there's lots who will. It's the only thing holding you back.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, Henry! I'll get the gear together eventually. But I might as well be practicing and playing in the meantime! I really appreciate your feedback. I'll be jumping on here again tomorrow and look forward to spending time with your posts. Have a good night!

    Back to top

    27 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear lcw115's recording

    I've been on a hiatus for awhile, as I'm working on other creative projects. However, I wanted to get back into practicing my Voice Overs and also re-recording some old scripts such as this one and others. Please comment on performance only and would appreciate constructive, courteous, and positive feedback. Thank you.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-7256/script-recording-31055.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Wow Lenny. just WOW! .. I compared this to your original and this one was way better - on every level! Tone, emotion, pacing, sound quality was vastly improved. The first one had a tone that was just too sexy for the copy. But the tone in this one was very appropriate, and you seemed more relaxed, with a nice genuine smile all the way through. Loved it! : )

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks Javi!

    I listened to your suggestions, as well as Tom's and Richurd's in regards to delivery, pace, pitch and all, as I wanted this to sound natural, but also add a certain amount of emotion to make it appealing.

    I'll be working on some new Documentaries, as you know I love doing them.

    Glad you enjoyed this and thank you so much for your comments and help!

    Take Care,
    Lenny

    Back to top

    35 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear lcw115's recording

    Recently recorded this script, however did not reflect enough, so recorded it over. I wanted to create a certain effect with the script, therefore music and narration are within intervals. Please comment and would appreciate constructive and positive feedback. Thank you.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-7256/script-recording-26837.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    12 people before me played this, isn't this the comment and critique section? I thought so...
    I loved what you did with the script. I identified it with a style PBS uses a lot to introduce their programming. Your voice has that certain tone that fits in very well with this narration and it's easy to listen to you. I'd think that the perfect voiceover would be one where you imagine a person talking but you really don't pay attention to the voice as much as you see the person talking to you. Like the words are part of the visual, they enhance the script without the voice standing out. This did that for me. Nodo420

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you Nodo. I was trying to create that essence of a documentary often presented on the Biography channel or PBS. I also used visualization, whereas in reading the script, I thought about stills, photos of Charlie Chaplin and clips from his movies; as I wanted to make the script as effective as possible. Glad you enjoy the performance and once again thank you for your comment, I appreciate it. Best of luck. LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    Wonderful voice. I like the lower pitch and calm or casual delivery but not sure it was right for this script. End of every speaking phrase was dropped in pitch, whether end of sentence or not. This makes the flow of narration jerky instead of smooth.
    Thought music was the right kind but too loud at start - distracting and waiting for what comes next. Definitely keep practicing - look forward to more from you.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you so much David! As I stated, I was trying to make as a televised documentary. I have a lot of work to do regarding performances such as pitch, tone, delivery, etc... But I am trying to do my best and hopefully I will improve. I'm glad you liked the performance. Best of luck. LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    Music was too loud, but I was listening to your voice and your delivery. I listened with
    interest all the way through. You have something going that is very appealing.

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh Henry, that is so nice of you to say! I'm glad you liked this. I didn't want to go too over the top with this and I tried to make it as appealing as possible. I still have to work on my pitch and trying to do the best I can with pacing. Thank you so much for your comment, I really appreciate it. Best of luck, LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    I really like how you sound! My only concern is that at the end of all your sentences, your pitched dropped and it almost sounded like a whisper. Otherwise, great job! Loved the music.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you Cheesywoo! I know. I have to seriously work on my pitch and my pacing. It's just that sometimes in reading a script, one part may require that you read it different from another part of the script (i.e. happy, serious, etc..) but, I will work on this. Glad you enjoyed the script and thank you once again for your comment and feedback. Best of luck, LCW.

    Back to top
    Christopher Reeve Biography-HWilson

    Script:

    The whole world held its breath when Christopher Reeve struggled for life on Memorial Day, 1995. On the third jump of a riding competition, Reeve was thrown headfirst from his horse in an accident that broke his neck and left him unable to move or breathe. In the years following the accident, Reeve raised much awareness and money for spinal cord research. And in 1998, he penned the heartbreaking, funny and courageous autobiography, "Still Me". As we look back, you'll hear from the Man of Steel himself through interview footage as he talks about his early success on Broadway opposite the legendary Katherine Hepburn, and later the adventure of filming Superman on the streets of New York, and how the movie made him a star. With dignity and sensitivity, he describes the journey he has made - physically, emotionally, spiritually. This is the determined, passionate story of one man, a gifted actor and star.

    104 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear newjerseyhoward's recording

    I previously submitted this for peer feedback and have incorporated those changes.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-1583/script-recording-76245.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hello, I loved the pace and vocal variety. Just felt you could have been a bit louder.
    Best wishes!
    -Riz

    Back to top
    Christopher Reeve Biography-HWilson

    Script:

    The whole world held its breath when Christopher Reeve struggled for life on Memorial Day, 1995. On the third jump of a riding competition, Reeve was thrown headfirst from his horse in an accident that broke his neck and left him unable to move or breathe. In the years following the accident, Reeve raised much awareness and money for spinal cord research. And in 1998, he penned the heartbreaking, funny and courageous autobiography, "Still Me". As we look back, you'll hear from the Man of Steel himself through interview footage as he talks about his early success on Broadway opposite the legendary Katherine Hepburn, and later the adventure of filming Superman on the streets of New York, and how the movie made him a star. With dignity and sensitivity, he describes the journey he has made - physically, emotionally, spiritually. This is the determined, passionate story of one man, a gifted actor and star.

    75 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear newjerseyhoward's recording

    I recently completed my demo with Edge. Through the use of practice scripts from their library, I'm looking for ongoing feedback to advance in the business by refining my technique. Thank you for your candid comments.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-1583/script-recording-76023.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I think your voice fits the piece nicely, but I would have preferred most of the breaths edited out. When you read, you tend to take big breaths and then little natural breaths too, and it just adds up to me wanting to breathe all the time. lol Either having better breath control, or knowing how to edit those out will be helpful.

    Also, you seemed to be reading the punctuation, which is not recommended. "physically, emotionally, spiritually" is a good example to listen to. Some punctuation should be considered direction, when it may not make sense grammatically, but a lot of that is just for grammar's sake. As the actor, it's up to you to find out which.

    I think you're off to a great start, but with more breath/editing work, and really absorbing the copy... tell us a story about Christopher Reeves! You'll be able to do just fine.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi newjerseyhoward,
    I'd like to second bean420's comment about "absorbing the copy." The main thing for me as a listener here is that I can't hear the story in it, and therefore can't connect, emotionally or otherwise, to the content. (Definitely something a lot of us struggle to find when reading...) There are different ways to tackle this -- everybody's different -- but one thing that might be helpful for you is to think less about the words (and, as bean420 mentions, the punctuation) and more about the thing itself: Christopher Reeve and his determined, passionate story.
    Best,
    Pete

    Back to top

    27 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear lcw115's recording

    I love Biographies and Claude Debussey was mentioned in one of my favorite films. Because the script is about music, I integrated several music beds together with audio. Sound quality may not be crystal clear, however tried to edit as much excess and background noise as possible. New microphone will be arriving in a few days, which will make recordings better. Please comment on performance and would appreciate constructive and positive feedback. Thank you.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-7256/script-recording-27314.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You have a lovely voice and a solid sense of the piece. A few suggestions might be for you to keep the flow of the narrative going, rather than constantly stopping it (ostensibly so we can hear the music beds). You might want to try cross-fading the different musical tracks and talking over them, rather than between them. Also, your delivery started to slip into a somewhat repetitive pattern. Maybe break-up some of the phrasing. All-in-all, great job!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you Jim! I also like your voice a lot and think you are definitely at a Professional status! I will try the suggestions and use the cross fade option. I'll be doing this one over. Once again, thank you for your comment. Best of luck. LCW.

    Back to top

    32 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Andre Hughes's recording

    Any overall feedback would be appreciated. Thanks

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/dr drew.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    On the first listen, I thought it was a little "dry". Some narration should be delivered that way because of its subject matter, but this is about an African-American physician of the early 20th century who did some pretty impressive things, not the least of which was to even become a physician in that era of our country's history. My point being is that the read should reflect a certain pride and wonder in such an accomplished person. And, as I assume you are African-American yourself, it is all the more reason to "invest" more of yourself in the read. Give it your point of view and perspective. Is this someone whom you admire? Tell me so with that expression in your voice.

    I also assume that this is just an excerpt of a longer narrative. Make me want to hear more about this person by not having the end of the read seem like the end of the story, which it is not. This has a certain "finality" about it. One way to achieve that is to write something more, another sentence or two (even if it's completely made up) and continue on to record that, then edit it off.

    Also, from a copy standpoint, "blood banks" is in quotes and should probably be given some kind of emphasis because it was a new concept at the beginning of the 20th century, not the common thing that we are accustomed to today. Which is another reason why this person is so important and interesting.

    Back to top

    19 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear sundance kid's recording

    OK, let's try a bit of narration. Why is the serious stuff so much harder than the silly stuff?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-53623/script-recording-56453.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    It JUST is.

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh...listened. Stopped short of the full read. You're rushing through the punctuation and not connecting with the script. Someone pulling this up on Netfix or on the History Channel would want to hear someone more connected to the script. Tell the story...don't simply read the words.

    Peer Feedback:

    Yeah, this is an area where I'm going to need some professional coaching. Straightforward narration is a bit of a stretch for me right now. Need to unlearn some old radio habits and yeah, connect better.

    Peer Feedback:

    I love your voice. (sounds like Steven Spielberg's) but it did seem rushed and the music wasn't appropriate. Best.

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice voice. Easy to understand. Interesting to listen to.

    Peer Feedback:

    sundance --
    great narration voice. reminds me of Peter Coyote.
    some interesting inflection.

    you rushed it a bit...especially since the subject is about the "American West", which implies 'laid back' to me.

    I like it overall. tweak the timing a little, a little more feeling, and this a really nice read.

    -Dave Saunders.

    Back to top

    25 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Chris Coulter's recording

    I struggled a little on the words "chief usher Ike Hoover". That may have been what brought me up to one minute and one second. Try as I might, I couldn't get those words to trip lightly off of my tongue for some reason.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/Eleanor-Roosevelt.MP3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi! Chris. There was a 'breezy informality' in your read which I liked. I noted you didn't pause after White House which would have made better sense. Otherwise, the pauses and inflections were done with great aplomb. Best.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you, Arlen. I was really having fun with that read because I see Eleanor Roosevelt as kind of a character and wanted to put some of that into my read. To be clear, I mean that in a good way.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Chris,

    Nice job. Good for you to tackle a long script like that and one you kept me interested in throughout.

    Lots of nice changes in your inflection to keep the listener intrigued.

    Your style reminds me of when Disney had records that someone would narrate stories on and I would follow along in the book. That is a good thing!

    All the best.

    Peer Feedback:

    I remember those records. Those narrations must have become a part of my speech pattern. :)

    Back to top
    Etta James Biography

    Script:

    Etta James has been singing blues, jazz, country, gospel and pop hits since the early 1950s, from the suggestive dancehall favorite "Roll With Me, Henry" to her signature ballad "At Last." Once among the most woefully overlooked figures in the history of blues and rock, she began finally coming into her own in the 1990s, receiving industry awards that confirmed her status as one of the matriarchs of modern music. James influenced a variety of musicians, including The Rolling Stones, Rod Stewart, Diana Ross, Janis Joplin, and even Christina Aguilera. She has been seen as bridging the gap between rhythm and blues and rock and roll. Recording some of the first-ever rock and roll records when she was a teenager in the 1950s, James had a unique view of rock's origins. Not limiting herself to rock, however, she went on to make potent soul records in the 1960s and 1970s, adding further polish to her lengthy career.

    43 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Sheri Speaks's recording

    This is another piece under consideration for my narration demo. I uploaded a travel piece earlier. Looking for your thoughts on whether I'm sounding more natural.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-1157/script-recording-23937.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice casual read Sheri! Good pacing throughout, and the inflection and tone were very nice. You have a great voice.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hello Sherri, The read was good. It needs polish. Tighten up the pauses and edit breaths. When your at the polishing stage that's a good thing because you've got the read pretty well down, what left is tweaking.
    (Controlling breathing on a long read is not so easy is it?) Thumbs up.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Sherri. Like the read a lot....Etta is one of my favorites and her rendition of At Last is the definitive. The volume was a little low....maybe just my speaker. I agree that the piece would benefit from tightening the pauses....but otherwise very nice!!

    Peer Feedback:

    Overall, this is a good read. I agree with others that you need to work to eliminate some of the pauses. Also, the word "unique" needs to be hit, and add some enthusiasm. Otherwise, good job!

    E

    Back to top

    40 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Henry Dewing's recording

    This is a straight-through reading in support of my other friend reading this script.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-6638/script-recording-27981.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Your my new Hero!

    Peer Feedback:

    Henry, I actually liked the first and second versions of this script. Especially the one where you added background music and I thought your method was genius! As the majority of us edit our music beds within our audio using software, but you recorded while letting the music play in the background during your recording and surprisingly it was at the right level.

    I also thought of this, you've been doing a lot of historical/documentary reads. If you're interested in doing some Volunteer voice over work; why don't you contact some of the local colleges or film schools in your area and tell them you're a retired actor who is pursuing Voice Overs and would be interested in working with any of the students who maybe doing documentaries and need a Narrator.

    I think it would be good for you, as you have a very unique voice that's suited for historical and documentary type of scripts.

    You're doing great! Best of luck, LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    To LCW I know your referring to my Ben Franklin read, where I played "Yankee Doodle"
    in the background, instead of multi-tracking. I am accustomed to singing with music.
    I am happy to share my experience, as I just did for KNM. That's what the Forum is about, not just giving advice. Yes I have been contacted to do volunteer work on scripts. I have nothing to lose. On the plus side, it would help establish my reputation. I have an advantage over you guys. It's 'urgency.' This is the last I will do with my life, while you have lots to look forward to.

    Peer Feedback:

    Henry,, I hope many will read your post,, and take it as an insperation. I totaly agree with you on why this forum is unique, and awsome. Many treat it as just a constant dry run at auditioning,,, but it can be a wonderful, creative learning place, where all can prosper, and enjoy. Thank you for bringing us along on your journey. As to your last point,,, I try to always remeber,, Life is a timed event,, and enjoy it along the way. We never know when the last grain of sand will fall for any of us. As Harry Chapin said in one of his songs,, "Its got to be the going, not the getting there thats good."

    Peer Feedback:

    Yes Henry, I agree with KNM. You are an inspiration and I personally enjoy your scripts and look forward in hearing them.

    I look at many younger people of today, and think of how fortunate they are, as there's so much offered to them. But most of all, we have to enjoy what we do in life.

    Also, this forum is a place for us to learn from one another and express ourselves, whereas I've learned so much and truly admire many of my Peers work.

    Looking forward to your next script.

    LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you all! My deep appreciation to Linda for her thorough critique. Not having any idea what Lincoln sounded like, (some hold that he sounded like a farmer, and had a high voice) I tried to make him a very tired and grieving man. Historians say it was "sad."
    It's very difficult to read such a great speech!

    Back to top
    Georgia O'Keeffe

    Script:

    Georgia O'Keeffe revolutionized modern art, both in her time and in the present. And if we understand O'Keeffe's emotional response to nature and her need to create an equivalent in art, we hold the key to her work. In the 1920s she explored this theme in her magnified paintings of flowers, meant to convey that Nature, in all its beauty, was as powerful as the widespread industrialization of the period. After spending her first summer in New Mexico, she began to paint the colorful yet barren landscape, expansive skies and bleached bones that would capture her imagination, and her heart, for the rest of her life.

    24 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Sherrill S's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-12306/script-recording-53167.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I really liked your voice tone in this read. You also did a great job of noticing key words that needed emphasis. However, it seemed like there was too much of a pause leading up to the emphasis, and too much after. Doing this was like isolating it away from the statement instead of making it a more powerful part of it. The tempo at the begining was excellent too, but slowed down after the last third of the read. Keep at it, your voice quality is strong!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks Pyahdonequah for your comments. I was imagining this as a read for a documentary which is why I paused so long. I also agree that I lost steam at the end - I cannot tell you how many times I read this because I was fighting with mouth noises or bad articulations. Thanks for the encouraging words.

    Peer Feedback:

    I thought this was terrific. I closed my eyes and imagined being in a museum with a guided audio tour in my ears. The pace worked for me, actually. The writer's words and phrases weren't intuitive or easy to quickly comprehend, and I appreciated it being slow enough to easily follow along. I read what you said about fighting mouth noises or bad articulations so I went back and picked nits for you... Maybe some slurring with "emotional response to nature"? "Barren landscape, expansive skies and bleached bones" might be a titch awkward. But overall I thought you broke down the script in such a way--honoring important punctuation and using emphasis carefully--that it made a tough paragraph easy to understand and interesting aloud without having to read along. Nice work!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, Tonia. I appreciate your comments and your "nits." I had always thought I had good articulation until I started to record myself with my good microphone and really hear how lazy my mouth is at times. I'm trying to build up those muscles again with tongue twisters and other articulation boosters as well as trying to stay properly hydrated. Now that I can really hear the imperfections this is harder than I thought.

    Back to top
    Groucho Marx Biography

    Script:

    The rapid fire delivery and wit of Groucho Marx earned him many admirers. However, his son would complain about his father always being "on". If he ever asked Groucho about something serious or personal, Groucho would reply with one-liners.

    37 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear stevebudko's recording

    Looking for peer critiques of the read and professional feedback on the recording quality/studio quality. Added minor compression and noise reduction.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-4731/script-recording-24028.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Voice, recording quality, clarity were all good however it did sound like you were reading the information to me rather than telling me about Groucho Marx. Try it with a little more conversational feel and I think it will work.

    Back to top
    Groucho Marx Biography

    Script:

    The rapid fire delivery and wit of Groucho Marx earned him many admirers. However, his son would complain about his father always being "on". If he were to ask Groucho about something serious or personal, Groucho would reply with one-liners.

    33 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear stevebudko's recording

    Trying to acheive a conversational, natural take, without sounding forced.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-4731/script-recording-23913.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    "on" doesn't sound different or emphasized.
    same with "one liners"
    No change in voice. Is the second sentence supposed to be upsetting, funny, etc? Still sounds too much like a commercial and not a conversation to me.

    Peer Feedback:

    Ditto. I agree that "on" and "one-liners" needs to be changed up. When I hear the phrase "one-liner", the "liner" is the emphasized word.

    Peer Feedback:

    The read was good! "on" and "one liners" did fall flat.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Steve, much of conversational quality comes, if well written, from the script. That means not blowing past punctuation. While the critiques on the aforementioned words are legitimate, my problem is with the word However. The first sentence should have an air of awe about it. The second sentence should reflect a change in inflection and tone with However. The coma should be respected with a pause. This gives your listeners time to acknowledge the shift in tone and that a change of intent
    is coming which the story then reveals.

    Peer Feedback:

    Wow Richurd, that was textbook! Blew the dust off that one eh? lol

    Peer Feedback:

    Richurd's critique is spot on.

    E

    Back to top

    19 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Chris Coulter's recording

    I have recorded this read with the lowest microphone sensitivity setting on my Olympus Digital recorder and have lowered the level just a bit, while still staying close to the mic. I hear less echo and less rasping of fingers on braille pages. What do you all think? Comments on performance are welcome as always, too.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/h-r-clinton.MP3

    Peer Feedback:

    Chris --
    I like your voice. It has a great tone to it.

    I think the pacing was too slow for my taste, and I got a real sense that you were reading to me or "performing" to me, rather than explaining to me. Also, the emphasis on certain words seemed forced.

    I'm unfamiliar with performing lines read from braille, but I assume that it's a slower process than reading a printed page....maybe that is one source of the slow pace?
    dunno.

    Hope this is helpful,
    Cheers,
    Dave Saunders

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi, Chris. You have a very pleasant voice which is easy to listen to. The sound quality is good but I hear a bit of an echo which is a little distracting.

    Regarding your performance, my first impression was that it was a comic piece and that a you were reading it with a bit of sarcasm in your voice. I'm sure that wasn't your intent. Therefore, I would suggest that you relax and allow the words to flow. They sound forced, unnatural, even pretentious. Just relax, picture yourself speaking to a friend, and the read will be greatly improved. Keep up the good work!

    E

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks to both Dave and Elton. You are two people who are hearing my recordings for the first time and, of course, I value your comments. Yes, reading braille out loud can be a very slow process but many blind people can overcome the slow pace and I'm working on it. I think the unnatural and pretentious tone, which, I confess is true of my reads, comes from some slight nervousness. Both of you are right; I need to get out of my own way. :)

    Peer Feedback:

    After you've done a couple hundred auditions, the nervousness starts to go away...
    :-)

    cheers,
    Dave Saunders.

    Peer Feedback:

    I worked as a singer and piano player for over twenty years and I've made the mistake of thinking that the audition process for VO couldn't be any different than auditioning as a singer. I may have to rethink my position. :)

    Peer Feedback:

    I heard one big rasp nearer the end but that was it, and I thought the echo somewhat better.

    It did get slow on you. There was a musicality to your voice that took it a few shades from natural, like it can, but I listened super carefully and I think that musicality might come off more as "interesting character" in your voice with a quicker, more easy-going pace. I think you have strong feelings about what you read and that could really work for you.

    I listened to a great interview on All Things Considered two evenings ago. Well, I can barely remember the topic--maybe something about marketing? But the part that grabbed me was that the speaker was all over the place with pitch and drama--it was clear she was a bit of a character. But with her natural pacing and passion for the topic, it worked very well and seemed very natural.

    Okay, I found it. Here it is. What do you think? I hear this and think of you with your pace stepped up. http://www.npr.org/player/v2/mediaPlayer.html?action=1&t=1&islist=false&...

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh, my gosh, Tonya. I've heard the woman being interviewed many, many times. She's actually an NPR reporter. I never noticed until now how much like me she sounds. I get the point, though. I do have passion about whatever I read or talk about and I'm beginning to be more relaxed. That should help me with speeding it up just a little.

    Peer Feedback:

    I'm so glad you hear it, too!

    I wonder if you're finding your voice to market...I mean, I think the "professional voice" is an important tool for every VO's toolbox, but I can imagine a marketable niche for a mature voice with real character and enthusiasm that might bring you some enjoyable work. I keep thinking "a bit of a character", and I mean that in a flattering way. My husband hears it, too (I shared your read with him last night). I wonder if there's a coach at Edge who'd be particularly helpful with that...

    You can tell I've been thinking a lot about voice styles and how to market myself, lately.

    Peer Feedback:

    Well, I think you're spot on in thinking of me as a character. I don't know for sure what my marketable voice is but I'm seriously looking at audiobooks for a start. I'm getting close to signing up for coaching as soon as I can get the money together. My husband's employment is stable for the first time in a while and I can at least make a pretty solid plan. Well, more on this over virtual coffee and conversation some other time, but first I want to thank everyone for your comments and, Tonya, you are a very perceptive lady.

    Back to top

    12 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear redhedgentry@msn.com's recording

    This is my first time! As a newbie, I am really looking forward to any an all comments. I am also uploading a slightly different version, and would love to find what you think is better and why. Thank-you!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5791/script-recording-22426.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Lovely voice. You are easy to understand. Your inflection is not natural. Listen to naration on documentrys and pick up on how the sentences flow. Take advantage of the free service here on edge to call and ask questions on inflection. Keep it up.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank-you so much for the feedback!

    Back to top

    14 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear redhedgentry@msn.com's recording

    Here is take two based on my last feedback. Please help me with any and all comments. I am new and want to learn!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5791/script-recording-22449.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Sound like you are reading...Mark up your script. And slow down. Good luck!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank-you Steven. Do you think I need to find a happy medium compared with my first take (below)? Or is this apples and oranges?

    Back to top
    John Jasper

    Script:

    John Jasper
    John Jasper was a noted slave preacher who became a significant community leader in Richmond, Virginia, following the Civil War. Born and raised on a plantation in Fluvanna County, Virginia, Jasper at the age of 13 was hired out to work in tobacco factories in Richmond and later in the coal mines of Chesterfield County. Self-educated and devoutly Christian, Jasper became a very popular slave preacher, in great demand

    17 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear jenzlink's recording

    Bsic USB Mic. What adjustments should I make?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/John Jasper Narration Bio.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Jennifer,

    Thank you again for your critique on my read! Jennifer, you have a nice warm voice. It sounded like you were too close to your mic, like you were accidently bumping into it. Also, do you have a pop filter, I heard some plosives.

    Wishing you the very best!

    Many Blessings,

    Carol

    Peer Feedback:

    It is a basic USB Mic No bumping in, however I do hear the plosives you referred to. I do not have a pop filter yet;I am getting one this week. Thanks so much for the feed back Carol.

    The very best to you!

    Back to top
    John Muir Quote

    Script:

    In God's wildness lies the hope of the world - the great fresh unblighted, unredeemed wilderness. The galling harness of civilization drops off, and wounds heal ere we are aware. The unpublished journals of John Muir

    55 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear digitalwiz42's recording

    So I'm submitting this one again after running Audacity's noise elimination algorithm and editing out some mouth clicks and breathing sounds. My question now is, Is this version substantially better, technically, than the previous submission. No, I was not consciously trying to channel Don LaFontaine, and I accept the observation that I was merely "reading" rather than "talking". I'll try this script again. Thank you all.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-93524/script-recording-76802.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    The edits are certainly an improvement, but it'd be a stretch to say a substantial one.

    Back to top
    Lost Eden

    Script:

    Introducing: Lost Eden. A red to rival the Reds.

    When the Ottoman Empire deemed our wine unholy, we took our winemaking to the hills. When bloody Turkish battles sliced our vines down to their soil, we grew them back stronger. And when the Soviets seized control of our winemaking industry, we took our family recipes underground. We used centuries-old techniques to make the wine we love in secret while Communist Russia controlled our state. By day, the Reds had us making watered-down imitations of Georgian wine for mass consumption. By moonlight, we were home, quietly perfecting the delicate recipes of our ancestors.

    We are the country of Georgia, a lush garden nestled between the Black Sea and Russia’s southern border. We are the birthplace of wine and home to one of the most resilient cultures on earth. Taste the wine you weren’t supposed to—a red to rival the Reds.

    58 people have played this

    Audition Recording:

    Click to hear eddiethatvoguy's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-129052/script-recording-98601.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I think you have a great voice and are articulate. That being said, your interpretation for me was a sensual type of sound, not like a history lesson or Discovery documentary. Is that what you were aiming for? As for the recording quality, I do hear a bit of an echo.

    Back to top
    Lucky Man Part 3

    Script:

    Weird—maybe I slept on it funny. Five or six times in rapid succession I pumped my left hand into a fist, followed by a vigorous shaking out. Interlocking the fingers of each hand steeple-style with their opposite number, I lifted them up and over behind my head and pinned them to the pillow.
    Tap. Tap. Tap. Like a moisture-free Chinese water torture, I could feel a gentle drumming at the back of my skull. If it was trying to get my attention, it had succeeded. I withdrew my left hand from behind my head and held it in front of my face, steadily, with fingers splayed—like the bespectacled X-ray glasses geek in the old comic book ad. I didn’t have to see the underlying skeletal structure; the information I was looking for was right there in the flesh; a thumb, three stock-still fingers, and out there on the lunatic fringe, a spastic pinkie.

    19 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Scott Martin's recording

    Any feedback is most welcome! This is part 3 because the original script is too long to upload as one file. Anyone with good headphones is especially welcome to listen and let me know about "room noise", if any. Thanks!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-8309/script-recording-28482.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Scott, I listened with my cans and there are a couple of things I heard. I can't tell you with any degree of accuracy how to fix the problem or what exactly caused it, but it sounds overproduced. There is a noticeable "Bounce" on the tone which is usually caused by a noise gate attack setting. When it opens (you are talking) I can hear noise in the background above your voice. then it shuts down for complete silence. The "Bounce" or "Halo" around the sound I believe comes from reverb, but not knowing if you used any, I can't say for sure. Some of the guys on the board have a lot more engineering experience and can tell you what you did and how to fix it.

    It sounds like you are using tools to chase down and clean the noise.

    The read seemed ok, but I was distracted by the processed sound. If you send me a short clip with 5 seconds of dead silence at the beginning, followed by a minute of speaking (script or whatever) maybe I can suggest ways to reduce the noise with software, but someone with engineering experience will have to look at your setup to see where the noise is coming from. Nodo420(at)ono.com

    Peer Feedback:

    I agree with Nodo420,, what equipment are you useing, what programs,, whats the room like. What processing do you do ,, blah blah blah,, the more you can tell us about how you get here,, the more we can help.

    Peer Feedback:

    FYI, the Chickenman take you commented on that I did. It was done in my front living room, no treatment to the room, on a computer desk,, by a window. So it is possible to squash room sound,, with out the "halo "

    Peer Feedback:

    Hey, Scott - You have a terrific voice and an excellent grasp of the copy, but the technical issues did indeed pull me out of the scene. Were you removing your breathes with automation? The dead silence between phrases make it sound that way. I've dealt with the problem myself. If you're recording with a multi-track set-up (ProTools, etc.), you can record some room tone and lay-in a track of that, from start to finish, and it should take care of the problem. Also, try recording in a more confined/less live space. You sounded a bit like you were in a drain pipe.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hello! Thanks to everyone for their comments and suggestions.

    I have edited out the breathes between the phrases with Adobe Audition, because there have also been some mouth noises there. I realize now that the problem has been that I have been using Hard Limiting as well and it has created some kind of artifact, which is very evident when there is absolute silence after a phrase. I have created my own "portabooth" type system to protect the mic from room noise.

    I appreciate the tip about recording in some recorded room noise between the tracks. I have done that in the past for some radio programs that I produced. With the protection around my mic to keep out the room noise I don't get a good room tone to lay down in between the tracks! I can look for something somewhere in my previous recordings.

    I will post something without the Hard Limiting and then ask for your listening ears once more. Thanks to everyone!

    Back to top
    Magic Miracles and Memories on Main Street

    Script:

    The young girl charged into the house, screen door slamming behind her, shedding sketch book and pencils as she ran.

    "Mom, mom, where are you?"

    "In the kitchen, Bess. Please slow down, " exhorted Jean Park.

    "Guess what...guess what!" the wild-eyed child queried.

    Jean, having had hunderds of conversations with her daughter that began in a very similar manner, sighed and said, "There's a giraffe eating all my daffodils in the back yard?"

    "Oh, mom! You're so silly, be serious!" Not waiting for a response from Jean, eight-year-old Bess Park rushed on, workds tumbling over themselves in her excitement.

    "I've finally decided what I want to do with my life!" Bess, no stranger to drama, paused expectantly.

    "Well tell me, Bess. I can't wait to hear!"

    "I'm going to strap our grand piano to my back, travel to Africa, and play beautiful music for all the boys and girls on the Serengeti!"

    "Well," said Jean, momentarily at a loss for words, "I think that's just...uh, wonderful, dear." Last week, Bess's life ambition had been a prima ballerina, the week before, an award winning equestrienne. Jean shook her head, and continued peeling potatoes. With Bess you just never knew....

    79 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear msacay's recording

    Sorry to upload so many in a day...I had some time to fill. This is another piece I was wanting to see if it would be good for an audition sample for ACX. Wanted to play around more with character and dialogue in a third person narration.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-105999/script-recording-86026.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    That was amazing, it was perfect. You acted out the characters wonderfully and they had their own distinct sound and personality. You were clear, stayed at a good pace, and you really got me into the story.

    Peer Feedback:

    You lost Bess's characterization starting with "Oh, Mom..." It sounded closer to Jean then Bess's initial dialogue. Keep the excitement and wonder and scatter-brained-ness of that eight year old girl.

    For a good portion of the read, it was kind of "stilted" - a little too overly articulated which made it a little choppy. Example: "...the wild-eyed child queried." Doesn't trip lightly off the tongue, I know, but it has to sound like it does. Something like that might cause me to do take after take to get it to flow.

    One thing I learned from one of my coaches about a slate is this: Do a shoulder shrug or head tilt or both with the attitude of "Monique Bagwell. How can you not know who I am?" Or: "Monique Bagwell. Why would you hire anyone else for this job?" Or: "Monique Bagwell. I'm the answer to all of your problems." Less a statement of fact so much as a statement of pride, without being narcissistic. Voice actors often win jobs on their slate alone. It shows a comfortableness with saying your own name and living in your own skin.

    BTW - I'm being kind of tough on you because I can sense the desire to jump into the audiobook pool. But, as with any kind of VO demo, it has to show you off to the best of your ability. IMHO, you have a lot to offer as a narrator, but you also have a little ways to go to hone the skill set. Do you listen to female audiobook narrators? There are a good number of really excellent ones to choose from. And are you taking any audiobook specific coaching? You'd be surprised at how minutely they can break it down for you. It ain't just reading words using character voices. It's telling the tale and breathing life into the author's words.

    Peer Feedback:

    +hattorikazuha Thank you! I am glad you enjoyed the reading :-) I appreciate you listening and taking the time to offer feedback.

    +jamesromick Are you hiding in my studio??? Because you seem to catch all the things I have questions about but hope no one notices. Great notes! I am going to go back and work on these. Did you notice if the sound on the other two were also low? They were recorded on the same level.

    Never apologize for good direction. I'm an actress...I thrive on direction. Funny, I think we often need to hear the 'permission' to take risks before we actually apply them to make our work better that first time out. Its the 'cop-in-the-head' syndrome. I have only listened to a hand full of audio books, as I prefer to read. But I did listen to some sample readings found on ACX tutorials that were pretty amazing. I want to do audiobooks but am open to other forms of narration as well. Back to the closet!
    .

    Peer Feedback:

    One good way to gain some perspective is to set it aside for a while and come back to it and listen with your eyes closed. Something will hit your ear funny and you'll ask yourself, "How would that sound better, or different to make it make more sense?"

    Listening without the crutch of the words in front of you focuses your mind on what you are hearing. After all, we are primarily visual beings. The brain processes in preferences.

    The other thing is - You're the only one in the booth. Nobody's watching. Go Nutz!

    Listen to good female audiobook narrators.
    Barbara Rosenblat
    Robin Miles
    are 2 of my favorites.

    Go to Audible and listen to some samples of their and other women's work.

    Back to top
    Mozart

    Script:

    Born with absolute pitch, infallible rhythm, and a natural comprehension of harmony, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had come into this world with a complete gift. This is how, at the age of four, the child began to play the clavier, and at five, picked up a violin and, reading at sight, staggered through six trios with his father and a friend. The child read and wrote musical notes before he could do as much with letters. Compositions dating from his sixth year are recognizable from the opening bars as the music of Mozart, and nobody else. Graceful and sure, spirited, precise, and brave, they are the work of a unique stylist and a great soul.

    23 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear eliehershfield's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/mozart.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I really like your voice for this piece Elie, but to me it sounded a bit flat lacking emotion and too scripted. But as you will read many times throughout this forum, (If of course you check out a lot of the feedback) try to sound more conversational, who are you speaking to? Your microphone? This piece I would envision myself standing at the podium on the stage of a huge orchestra hall filled with thousands of people waiting to hear, "The Music of Mozart!" There are such great descriptive words to use in your favor to showcase your voice and put your own personal twist on the script. Who or what are you speaking of? Mozart! One of the most prolific and influential composers of the classical era! I think if you incorporate a little more excitement, energy and inflection from line to line you will be golden. Nice script, nice job, Voice On!

    Back to top
    Mozart

    Script:

    Born with absolute pitch, infallible rhythm, and a natural comprehension of harmony, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had come into this world with a complete gift. This is how, at the age of four, the child began to play the clavier, and at five, picked up a violin and, reading at sight, staggered through six trios with his father and a friend. The child read and wrote musical notes before he could do as much with letters. Compositions dating from his sixth year are recognizable from the opening bars as the music of Mozart, and nobody else. Graceful and sure, spirited, precise, and brave, they are the work of a unique stylist and a great soul.

    66 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Skamfer's recording

    First submission, temporary home studio set up so quality of sound may be compromised.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-115636/script-recording-90923.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    your voice sounds good. There was a couple of noises maybe from your mic.

    Peer Feedback:

    Love your voice! I became a fan right when you said the title "Mozart".

    The quality is not bad, but there is some room effect reverb that you need to work on. More padding on the walls, or something is needed.

    Some of the pauses are excessive. You are over pausing on many of the commas and periods. It makes your great read sound choppy. Go back and cut the spaces if you needed that much time to breath.

    There are a few mouth clicks you need to edit as well. Easy once you figure it out. Listen to "comprehension" and "Wolfgang" for examples.

    Peer Feedback:

    I think you are trying too hard to enunciate every word and it starts to sound robotic. While clarity is essential, try a more natural speaking pattern. Also, Tom is right about the pauses. Shorten them up, which I think will happen if you try a more natural flow.

    Back to top
    Pablo Picasso

    Script:

    A woman is a woman, according to history. But to Pablo Picasso, a woman was something else again. A combination of lines, forms, and colors. Picasso changed the combination to suit his moods, and his result was seldom Eve-like. The woman may have elephant ears, crossed eyes, two noses. In the name of art, Picasso transformed natural appearances for well over half a century. People who don’t like unconventional art say he spoofed the public, and the public itself often scoffed at his works. When his chief masterpiece, Guernica, was first shown, many thought it looked like a jigsaw puzzle. But a multitude of artists now following in his footsteps believe Picasso was liberating art from age-old academic tradition.

    63 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Skamfer's recording

    I submitted this script early on (several months ago) and have worked on skills based on your feedback and professional coaching. I know my recording quality still needs perfecting, as do my skills!, but this recording is my latest version incorporating the new practices I continue to work on. All comments are welcome! Thanks so much!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-115636/script-recording-91980.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Even though Picasso may be considered a kind of 20th Century Master as an avant-garde painting style, this script suggests that his work was (and may still be) misunderstood in his time.

    But the text also suggests a certain "whimsical" quality to his work, that seems to be an extension of his personality and persona. So, IMHO, the delivery should reflect that - a certain, "the joke's on you" kind of thing from Picasso to the art world and its critics.
    I mean, some of his stuff is truly bizarre! Today we might ask, "What the hell he was smokin' when he came up with this?" But his influence on other avant-garde artists stands the test of time.

    Play with the story and the words. What do you think of his work? What do you think the author of this text thinks of his work?

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, James, I actually did that my first submission a while ago. got some feedback that it was too whimsical. I like that approach. Thanks!

    Peer Feedback:

    I went back and listened to that earlier submission and read the (my) comments. It may be a matter of semantics as to how we interpret what "whimsical" is - in a children's story sense and/or in an adult sense.

    In listening to the previous iteration once again, the sing-songy-ness of the narrative sounds, to me, like the telling of a children's bedtime story of this eccentric, odd artist named Pablo Picasso.

    In an adult sense, "whimsical" would paint (paint, get it?) this guy as an "out of the mainstream" oddball artist and his work as strangely out of sync with a "traditional" idea of what portraiture is. It's kind of the equivalent of a mocking eye roll and saying, "Really? This is your idea of art?" And Picasso smiling and giving the one-fingered salute and saying, "Yeah. It is. And I don't care if you see the female form the way I see it. So there! PPPppppp (raspberry)!" A wink and a nod. Serious, and then again, not. A kind of organic flippancy and less academically stodgy. A complicated contradiction.

    Back to top
    Pablo Picasso

    Script:

    A woman is a woman, according to history. But to Pablo Picasso, a woman was something else again. A combination of lines, forms, and colors. Picasso changed the combination to suit his moods, and his result was seldom Eve-like. The woman may have elephant ears, crossed eyes, two noses. In the name of art, Picasso transformed natural appearances for well over half a century. People who don’t like unconventional art say he spoofed the public, and the public itself often scoffed at his works. When his chief masterpiece, Guernica, was first shown, many thought it looked like a jigsaw puzzle. But a multitude of artists now following in his footsteps believe Picasso was liberating art from age-old academic tradition.

    66 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Skamfer's recording

    I have adjusted recording techniques with Twisted Wave, mic position and my sound booth since my recent submissions. Also, worked on shortening pauses, softening flow and enunciations and plosives. Looking for feedback on technique and recording quality. Thanks!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-115636/script-recording-91081.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You have a pleasant voice. Not sure what causes it, maybe to close to the mic, but any "s" sounds have a scratchy quality to them. Other than that it sounded nice.

    Peer Feedback:

    IMHO? You're working the text too much.

    Take the line: "The woman may have elephant ears, crossed eyes, two noses." It's rather sing-songy and the inflections seem too "studied" to sound (say it with me) "conversational". It is a simple list of Picasso's take on the female form. Yes, it's unusual. But not for him. It simply is.

    The entire narrative quality is more like a children's story than a biographical sketch of the man.

    A little flatter and more even would be more effective for an adult or young adult listening audience. Let the words tell the story.

    Peer Feedback:

    appreciate all comments! Still experimenting with recording equipment settings and hadn't picked up on the "s" sounds so will look at that. Genre interpretations are an ongoing study for me......thx!

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi there, yes, I think you have a nice soothing voice. I did notice some of the "sss" sounds as well. I think the way you read this would make it seem more interesting to listen to although too much of the emotion might get a bit off-putting. It's such a fine line, really. I would have a hard time finding a balance on a piece like this. You had a pretty good balance overall I thought, although, like another commenter said, maybe it could be a slight bit flatter as far as emotion and having that studied quality goes. I did really like your pacing on this so the reader can understand and take in all you are teaching them.

    Back to top
    PabloPicasso

    Script:

    Pablo Picasso
    A woman is a woman, according to history. But to Pablo Picasso, a woman was something else again. A combination of lines, forms, and colors. Picasso changed the combination to suit his moods, and his result was seldom Eve-like. The woman may have elephant ears, crossed eyes, two noses. In the name of art, Picasso transformed natural appearances for well over half a century. People who don’t like unconventional art say he spoofed the public, and the public itself often scoffed at his works. When his chief masterpiece, Guernica, was first shown, many thought it looked like a jigsaw puzzle. But a multitude of artists now following in his footsteps believe Picasso was liberating art from age-old academic tradition.

    76 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Yvonne Lynch's recording

    I am trying a new recording sequence and would welcome any feedback on both recording and performance.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-30434/script-recording-82102.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Very nicely done. I loved the “surprised” sound in your voice when you said jigsaw puzzle. That was excellent!

    Peer Feedback:

    Great voice tone, perfectly fits the text and draws the listener. The recording quality could be better, and would definitely help back up your great voice!

    Peer Feedback:

    Great pacing, wonderful interpretation, and yes, the rendering of 'jigsaw puzzle' was quite refreshing...!! Not sure what is up with the recording, however. Lots of what sounds like phasing, or a very heavy dose of noise reduction using the inverse phase methods of something like Audacity. If that is the case, you may want to do the noise reduction in steps. Kinda like digital photography's Unsharp Mask sharpening techniques. A little bit each time, and you don't loose the fidelity. But the voice and interpretation are spot on. Nice.

    Peer Feedback:

    There is something about a British accent that makes us American's ears perk up. It just sounds more elegant to us somehow. We could listen to a cultured Brit read the phone book and be impressed.

    The pacing is very nice as is the interpretation, If I were to guess, I would say that you have had some experience in the theatre or some acting training. The ease with which you deliver the text is admirable, especially if you did this in one take.

    The sound quality leaves something to be desired. There's an underlying electronic hum - possibly interference from another electronic device in close proximity to to the mic or a bad cable. The processing is taking some frequencies out of your normal voice and causing it to sound metallic and almost like a computer generated voice. Also a lot of mouth noise, mostly cheek and tongue clicks, some of which could be eliminated with a little judicious surgical editing.

    Peer Feedback:

    What I liked about your voice is it commanded my attention with the blend of soft and scarlet tones and yes British accents do make ears perk up. As someone who is still learning how to do voiceovers I found your recording to be a good listening/teaching tool. Thank you

    Back to top
    Ramblin' Jack Elliott

    Script:

    1957. Paris. The kid has grown up. In his 20s now. He calls himself Ramblin' Jack Elliott. He is Ramblin' Jack Elliott. This thing he has become. The myth fully formed -- spurred and broke to ride. He's learned guitar from Woodie Guthrie out in Coney Island. He's memorized Woodie's repertoire -- including all the cowboy songs. He's now busking (singing on the streets for donations) with his friend Derroll Adams. Rake and a Ramblin Boy, Buffalo Skinners, Muleskinner Blues, Old Blue, Billy the Kid. They're bringing cowboy music to Paris, Rome, Brussels, and London. They ride Vespa motor scooters with wives and girlfriends and guitars and wine bottles strapped on the back. Bohemian cowboys. Boulevardiers.

    Ramblin' Jack Elliott will busk on the London subway platform and Mick Jagger, later of The Rolling Stones, will see the cowboy with his guitar and Mick will decide then and there to become a singer and quit art school. Imagine the musical history involved here. The conjunction of artistic spirits.

    But wait.

    Somewhere, high up on the Mesabi Iron Ore Range of Minnesota, a young kid named Robert Zimmerman will borrow a Ramblin' Jack Elliott LP from a friend. He will study Ramblin' Jack's guitar styling, his drawl, and his manner of presenting a song. This kid, up in Minnesota, will later change his name to Bob Dylan. He will, in turn, concoct his own personal myths and histories which will include tales of carnivals, circuses, reform schools, playing piano in rock and roll bands, entertaining at Colorado strip joints...and the like. Some of it true. Some of it fiction. The Minnesota kid will pioneer folk songwriting.

    11 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear sundance kid's recording

    I promised a serious read a couple of weeks ago, then promptly got sick. Still some lingering effects (you can probably hear it in my voice), but I thought I'd give it a shot anyway... This is an excerpt from Tom Russell's essay in Ranch & Reata magazine...

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/Ramblin Jack.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    sundance --
    really nice read. very patient. is the narrator a character, or is it you? either way, you stayed in character nicely through the whole read.
    I enjoyed it.

    the only critical feedback i would offer is that the pace had a kind of choppy cadence, that seemed stylized at first, but got repetitious after a couple paragraphs. I like the style, but maybe mix up longer and shorter sentences more often..? dunno.

    anyways, you have a great voice, and I really like your stuff.

    cheers,
    Dave Saunders.

    Peer Feedback:

    re: narrator character

    I pretty much adopted Tom Russell's speaking (or storytelling) style for this one...
    (See, for example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6k7WhmwarY)

    Back to top
    Ray Charles Biography

    Script:

    Born in Georgia in 1930, Ray Charles was a legendary musician who pioneered the genre of soul music during the 1950s. Often called the "Father of Soul," Charles combine blues, gospel and jazz to create groundbreaking hits such as "Unchain My Heart," "Hit the Road Jack" and "Georgia on My Mind." He died in 2004, leaving a lasting impression on contemporary music.

    86 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear sam22arc's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-14774/script-recording-88777.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice, smooth voice. And as an African-American, very fitting to the subject matter. I had the pleasure of seeing Ray Charles, live and up close, from the second row at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center back in the '80's. He was electric!

    A few things to consider - mostly pronunciation and articulation issues.

    Check the proper pronunciation of "genre" - a lot of people get it wrong and sometimes put an extra D in there before the R. It's of French derivation. Here's a link:

    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/genre?s=t

    The word "pioneered" got a little garbled.

    You may get some grief on "often", but not from me. The more preferred pronunciation (especially for VO) is without the T (of-fen), but it's spoken commonly enough with the T to be acceptable. In a session, a director/engineer would tell you which they would prefer. But more likely than not, it will be without the T. If it is your normal habit of saying it is with the T, you should practice to get comfortable saying the word without it.

    Missed the D at the end of "combined" (it's not in the script, but it should be to be grammatically correct past tense) and you kind of dropped or swallowed the L on the end of "Gospel" (sounded like "Gos-poh"). You also dropped the G at the end of "leaving" to the more colloquial leavin' and "lasting" sounded closer to "lasteen"

    Some of these things are regionalisms, culturalisms and habits to be aware of to make you more competitive in the business. That is not to say that an "urban" sound is something to steer away from - quite the contrary, there is a market for that (although a very selective one). But for so-called "mainstream" VO (especially in the genres of commercials and long form narration), like it or not, there is a certain "conformity" or standard to be met.

    You have a very pleasant, rich baritone voice. And you sound very comfortable behind the mic. However, the overall presentation is just a little "dry" and matter-of-factly detached - there's a certain awe, passion or attitude for respect the greatness of the man and his contribution to music that is lacking. I'm not saying to turn it up to 10, but go for about a 6 or a 7 - this is kind of a 3. Getting physical (hand gestures, arching your eyebrows wide, smiling, counting the song styles and songs off on your fingers) will translate into your vocal presentation to goose it up a touch.

    Back to top
    Richard Wagner

    Script:

    Richard Wagner was one of history's greatest composers, a theater artist of extraordinary genius and vision, and one of the most controversial characters in the entire pantheon of Western art. More than a century after his death, his legacy is still debated, his influence still felt in our very conception of Western music and in the contemporary forms of opera and the complete spectrum of theater and literary arts.

    As a composer, he rewrote the rules for opera—re-envisioning its musical forms and creating dazzling and unforgettable dramatic tapestries that melded orchestral magnificence with the soaring beauty of the human voice.

    As a theater artist, he pioneered the "Gesamtkunstwerk" or "total artwork" that incorporated music, drama, poetry, philosophy, myth, and ritual, building a theater of revolutionary design and creating musical dramas on a scale never before attempted in history.

    And, as a self-styled theorist, he pursued an agenda of militant German nationalism, anti-Semitism, elitist prejudice, and unbounded self-glorification in his often troubling philosophical tracts and essays.

    ©The Great Courses

    30 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear jamesromick's recording

    In a fit of inspiration.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/RichardWagner_VO.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    James, Not sure what the specs called for but IMHO, I would have much preferred a softer approach rather than the stern and somewhat announcery tone you injected into your performance. Best.

    Peer Feedback:

    Arlen,

    The tone was on purpose. If you know anything about Wagner, his music is grandiose and bombastic as was his personality. I felt that I had to match that as well as the guttural-ness (is that even a word?) and precision of the German language. I might have taken a different approach had it been Copin or Debussey.

    Peer Feedback:

    I think the Valkries overtook the piece, a bit.
    you're "strict" treatment of this read is good, I think, but it seemed a bit hard edged for a narration....I think you could've gotten a satisfactory outcome while pulling it back a little...dunno, it's subjective. The director gets to decide.

    I will say that your voice and performance were fully committed. nicely done. More bold that I dare go.

    cheers,
    DS.

    Peer Feedback:

    Well if the Wagner thing doesn't work out you could pass for a Nazi extra.

    Peer Feedback:

    Been there, done that.

    I played a Nazi in a summer stock production of "The Sound of Music" back in the mid 80's.

    BTW - I ripped the music from a YouTube video of a live concert performance. It was the only one I could find with the wailing soprano that sounded in any way decent. It sounded better in the mix straight from the DAW than it did after converting to an mp3. Then it got kind of thin sounding. I also threw it together as a distraction from another project that I needed a break from, so I didn't spend an inordinate amount of time on it.

    Peer Feedback:

    I know exactly what you mean about the music bed thinning out after it's been posted.
    it sound right in the DAW, and great care taken to bring it up front and get the levels right....only for it to go flat once posted.

    I wish I knew the secret combination to solve that one.

    Peer Feedback:

    Wasn't sure of the type of narrator you were trying to be here. The musicbed wasn't a great choice (or maybe too loud/distracting). Lost interest half way through James. This is about the person you are presenting, sounded more like you wanted to be showcased. Remember you are presenting the video as it is being displayed.

    Back to top

    28 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Henry Dewing's recording

    This is a different read from the demo with music that I did previously.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-6638/script-recording-32625.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nooooo, not this one again! Kidding, sounds good!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks, Javier, I'm still partial to the overblown original. But this one is easier to
    follow and more informative.

    Peer Feedback:

    I may occasionally post something I think might be of interest.
    I'm finished with the "pros" at Edge.

    Peer Feedback:

    Well done, Henry. You definitely have a great sense for dramatic scripts like this. I enjoyed it.

    Peer Feedback:

    Very much appreciate your comment, Bill

    Back to top

    40 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear David_K's recording

    I thought I would try to give this a retro twist. All comments welcome.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/Babe Ruth.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Fantastic job! The delivery was very good. The music chosen was perfect. I had trouble understanding "he set", it sounded like "sent", but that could have just been me. The only other thing that I could see was that in the phrase "until in 1966' you left out the "in" . Overall, GREAT!

    Peer Feedback:

    Awesome job Dave! Great Howard Cosell impersonation! Very impressive!

    Peer Feedback:

    Great job Dave! Really enjoyed this and I agree music choice was perfect. BTW, I live 7 blocks away from the Yankee Stadium! LOL!

    All the best,
    Lenny

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks all, I really appreciate the feedback and I wish I would have engaged into this forum much earlier. Currently off work due to a back injury, (herniated disc) so money is tight and I can't afford a Voice Coach. I've been a mechanic all my life, planes, trains, automobiles, industrial equipment, you name it. My body can't take it anymore and I'm really hoping to start a new career with voice overs. I never would have thought I could learn so much about voice overs by simply paying attention, listening and reading. Thanks to so many great knowledgeable talents for taking their time and helping all of us raise the bar. God Bless, Voice On!

    Back to top

    90 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear mkvo's recording

    Looking for general feedback on the overall read. Thanks!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-103944/script-recording-85220.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I really like your clarity, enunciation, and tone.
    For constructive criticism I'd say maybe it sounds too casual for the subject matter.

    Peer Feedback:

    What's your hurry? This zipped by before I had a chance to process it - maybe because I'm just an old fart.

    It's also really radio announcery and unconnected to the subject. I hear a lot of well articulated words going by rather swiftly, but no personal, honest investment in the topic. It sounds like you're reading very quickly.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for the comments. Pacing and the "radio" thing are definitely 2 things I'm trying to work on. 20 years of trying to cram scripts in to 30 seconds that don't belong. Even when I feel like I'm slowing down, it's still too fast.

    Peer Feedback:

    Fully understand about the internal :30 clock.

    But, more often than not, narration isn't constrained by time. It's more important to effectively tell the story with some relation to the subject matter.

    The other thing is something that I picked up from a Nancy Wolfson seminar. She calls it "voice under", in that your voice isn't the star of the show, the subject matter is. You're a supporting character.

    Peer Feedback:

    James mentions the pace - way too fast for an historical narrative I think.

    Also, this is a great read to be much more precise with enunciation. Like, "Switzerland" with a 'd', instead of Switzerlin.
    or "greatiss physiciss", "were publish[d] in 1905", "...enn gaining his doctorate....", "mass enn energy"...

    that kind of stuff.
    so, slow it down, and tighen it up.

    cheers,
    DS

    Peer Feedback:

    HI, MK.

    First impressions: you sound like you come from radio. Don't worry, I do too :-)
    Developing that 28.4 second sense is much easier than letting it go.

    1. It also sounds like you may be a little close to the mic. I'm definitely hearing the proximity effect. Plus I hear plosives in "parents," "patent clerk," and "Pern". What mic are you using? It sounds like a dynamic since there are certain places when the levels definitely drop briefly: a possible result of not "eating the mic".

    2. You're telling a story, not reading copy. Your voice should convey to me that you really know Einstein at some level and that you have studied his works to the point that you can just spout them out without any effort.

    3. I think if you surrounded the copy with some kind of reference in your mind, it would go a long way to slowing it down and smoothing the edges a bit.

    Picture yourself in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in the Einstein Exhibit. How would you hear the VO in that venue?

    Or

    Picture yourself as a history professor who is teaching the class "Physical Science Advances of the 20th Century." You're having a one-on-one with a student who is having a little difficulty in your class and has come to you for help.

    4. Respect pauses, yes... but not all pauses. It made the read a little choppy. An example would be the last sentence. I would have _maybe_ a half-beat bookending the actual equation instead of the full beat in the recording.

    All the best!
    Steven

    Back to top
    SMP Biography

    Script:

    I was born and raised in Annapolis, Maryland. My parents owned a marina at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay and I started working there at the ripe old age of nine. Was this a bad thing? No way! It’s what instilled me with my strong work ethic. If I wanted something above the necessities in life (food, shelter, clothing) I had to work for it. This taught me to be the productive member of society that I am and I wish more parents raised their kids this way.

    90 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear SteveP's recording

    This is a short snippet of my biography. I think I've worked out the kinks in my booth and audio chain, but feel free to tell me otherwise. I'm also looking for feedback on my delivery. Thanks in advance, Steve

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-91193/script-recording-75460.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Sounds fine to me, audio quality wise.

    Maybe just a little rushed in the delivery. Lay the story out a little more for me - give me time to mentally picture the scenes and situations that you're painting for me.

    The overall tone sounds authentic, since you're intimately familiar with the subject.

    Back to top

    28 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Wren Tenor's recording

    If you were surprised I tried the Don Script, You're gonna hate me for this one. I just couldn't resist, though. Let 'er rip.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-7371/script-recording-24471.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    LOL, you're really going for it on day one!

    Ok...the accent really didn't do it for me on this one. It was consistent, but it just didn't sound authentic enough to me. It wasn't BAD, it just wasn't ...convincing?

    Pace was too quick. If I recall, the character was telling this tale over some beers. I talk slower after a few beers. ;-)

    My biggest issue with this one is the liberty you took in several places with the written script. Changed or added words. Script writers would HATE that. I know that actors ad lib and often directors like that, but it's best for the sake of HERE that you stick to the script as best you can...or if you do take liberties, explain them in your description (acknowledging the difference between script and file and why) and then see how the commentary goes.

    Peer Feedback:

    The problem with trying to do something like this is that it was done so well by the original performer and is so well known that that is what it will always be compared to which is only to be expected. Which is why I watched the clip of this before I attempted it. I cheated. Believe it or not, the pacing is pretty close to the way it was done in the movie. Check it out on YouTube.

    Fair enough statement with the accent.

    As far as the changes to the script:
    "You know it’s kinda like old squares in a battle", "battle" became "battlefield"
    and "Sometimes he wouldn’t go away." got changed to "won't".

    All I can say is "Oops!", I got caught up in the character.
    I was there, man! The past tense became the present. "Shark!!! Tighter, lads. Tighter! Pound 'n holler, pound 'n holler!"
    There I go again.

    Cheers 'n some beers.

    Wren

    Peer Feedback:

    Cheers! Glad to see/hear you have a cooperative attitude toward the feedback on the forum. It's a really great resource.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Wren,

    I can tell from listening to your recording of "Don LaFontaine the Master" and this that they are both internally consistent accent wise. That is a very tough thing to achieve. Great work there!
    I would just like to add a general comment here and that this one sounds more like a careful correct read than one with the creative variations that acting out a script calls for. You come across as someone who is great at his craft. You would be very effective if you add your personality and character into your craft in scripts (such as this) that demand it.

    Good recording.

    All the best.

    Back to top
    The Three Stooges

    Script:

    Almost everyone is familiar with the screen characters of Moe, Larry and Curly, and most people know Shemp, Joe Besser and Curly Joe. These six men formed the world’s most loved comedy team, The Three Stooges. This is the other side of the story, the men behind the mayhem. Believe it or not, Moe was not always the leader of The Three Stooges, in fact when they first started, the boys were practically interchangeable. The development of their screen characters is an evolution which took years of refinement.

    81 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear KDaviesVoiceover's recording

    Hey guys, not really sure about audio quality. again there is some reverb there. I'm more focused on performance. I liked this script from the library, and wanted to give it a shot since i love the 3 stooges. I wanted something as natural as possible and kind of hooking the listener into the story with this 30 second clip. The last sentence though... Anyways thanks a lot guys, and as always, comments are super appreciated from anyone! :)

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-116299/script-recording-95446.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    First rate VO, KDavies! You actually sound familiar to me. Are you a seasoned pro? I'd love to hear the whole story, you're voice drew me in immediately. I do hear a slight "echo" however.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for the kind words, but I'm by no means a seasoned pro. I started about two years ago, and worked my way up as most people do in this type of work. I doubt you've heard me on anything, mostly narration. Would be nice to do it full time one day!

    There is some reverb in this, because of the settings. I recorded this one at a friends home studio and he has some seriously pro equipment. I asked him why the reverb, and he said a 'slight' reverb is good for the backing track. I had no plans to use it as a demo or put music to it.

    Thanks again!

    Peer Feedback:

    Very clear read and excellent intonation. My only real critique is that I'm hearing a bit of a click at the start of most of your sentences. It may just be my speakers, but it sounds like a sound (like a breath) was cut in half.

    Peer Feedback:

    Not a critique.

    The Three Stooges is the longest running comedy act - ever!

    Back to top
    William Shakespeare

    Script:

    William Shakespeare
    What does Shakespeare say to an era that feels that the times are out of joint? He does not renounce the world or wallow in self pity. He is the poet of this worldliness. Shakespeare distills his experiences into common sense and uncommon wisdom. In the hands of lesser playwrights, nobility often rests on the splendor of the language, but beautiful lines alone may rest no further than the ear. Shakespeare speaks to the soul. He could do anything he wanted with language. The way he talks of a thing conjures up the thing itself. He packed worlds into single syllables. “To be or not to be,” is man’s largest question put in man’s smallest and simplest words.

    17 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear ejmays's recording

    I am most concerned with performance, since that has been the major issue with my training. My recording space has been non-existent for awhile but I'm gathering materials to begin anew, so please don't make me cry about that. However, I want bare knuckles on my performance.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-9240/script-recording-72029.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hello: I liked your read. Nice voice but you did miss the beginning of the sentence "In hands of lesser playwrights,"

    Peer Feedback:

    Your use of the noise gate (or whatever processing you are using between sentences and/or at pauses) is a little jarring. Those dead silences are disturbing to a listener. A little room tone spliced in there would sooth the listening experience. Underlying room tone gives a sense of continuity and warmth, instead of fragments of sound with dead silent gaps.

    There's a little of an "announcer-y" detachment to the delivery- and ever-so-slightly sing-song-ness as well.

    The best line here, IMHO, was "...may rest no further than the ear." It sounded honest and had a POV.

    Peer Feedback:

    Oh my word, you're right! I must have not pasted the whole thing onto the Word doc before printing. Thank you so much for the feedback chrissy45.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks James. I know what you're saying is so, as I began with cars and buses passing. I should have something resembling a sound booth coming soon and as you know, the dreaded announcannoyance raises it's head all the time but I keep working on it. I think my attention to that also hurts my delivery. It's always good to get you feedback and I be back shortly for more.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Ej, you have such a lovely voice, and I think it's a spot on tone for this read. However, I think you're struggling with something I have issues with as well - the dreaded pause between sentences. I didn't hear the dead space that James mentioned only because I'm listening in a room with a bit of background noise in it, but I did hear a disconnect between a few sentences, as though they are from completely different recordings. Like I said, I'm working on this as well. The flow can be tough to reign in without it sounding sloppy or rushed. I think once you nail that your delivery will be great!

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    A Tribute to the Armed Forces

    Script:

    This is a tribute to the heroism, loyalty and valor of our armed forces… and their families,

    author unknown.

    The night before the burial of her husband, 2nd Lt. James Cathey, United States Marine Corps, who’d been killed in Iraq, Katherine Cathey refused to leave the casket, instead, asking to sleep next to his body one final time. The Marines made a bed for her, tucking in the sheets below the flag. Before she fell asleep, she opened her laptop computer and played songs that reminded her of "Cat"… one of the Marines asked if she wanted them to continue standing watch as she slept, or to retire to just outside the door…
    "I think it would be kind of nice if you kept doing it" she said.
    "I think that's what he would have wanted".

    I’m Not sure what is more honorable: Being married to this faithful wife to the end or the Marine attentively standing next to the casket… watching over them both.

    Always remember, Freedom is not free. It’s paid for in blood
    IN HONOR OF OF OUR ARMED FORCES

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 4 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Abraham Lincoln

    Script:

    Abraham Lincoln rose from his chair and advanced toward the podium. He was now at the height of his power, with the Civil War nearly won. In one hand he held a single sheet of paper, typeset and printed in double columns. The foreboding clouds threatened another downpour. Then, reported Noah Brooks, journalist and friend of the president, the strangest thing happened: “Just at that moment the sun, which had been obscured all day, burst forth in its unclouded meridian splendor and flooded the spectacle with glory and light. Every heart beat quicker at the unexpected omen…so might the darkness which had obscured the past four years be now dissipated.” The president’s text was brief – just 701 words.

    “Fondly do we hope – fervently do we pray – that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away… With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan – to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.”

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 19 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Albert Einstein

    Script:

    Albert Einstein was a genius, and one of the greatest physicists of all time. His famous Theories of Relativity, which describe the relationship between mass and energy, and between space and time, were published in 1905 and 1916. Einstein was born of Jewish parents in Ulm, Germany. He spent many years in Switzerland, becoming a Swiss citizen in 1901, and gaining his Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1905 from Zurich University. It was while employed as a patent clerk in Berne that he published his first Theory of Relativity. This contained his famous equation: E=mc2, which explains the relationship between mass and energy.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 15 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Amelia Earhart

    Script:

    Amelia Earhart dared to go where no one had gone before. The public adored the pioneering pilot. And news reels of the day captured her every move. Yet the private side of Amelia would always remain an enigma.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Amelia Earhart 2

    Script:

    On July 2, 1937, Amelia Earhart and Fred Newman disappeared somewhere over the Pacific Ocean, during their attempted around the world flight. The U.S. Government’s official conclusion was that the fliers were unable to locate their destination of Howland Island, ran out of fuel, crash landed into the water, and sank to the bottom of the deep ocean. Seventeen thousand feet below the surface. But the government’s conclusion did not satisfy some researchers and enthusiasts. Since there was no physical evidence to support it, alternate theories began to emerge.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 6 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Amelia Earhart 3

    Script:

    Some say things can’t be done. Others do them, proving that with the right combination of bravado and talent, there’s no telling what you can accomplish. Nicknamed “Lady Lindy”, Amelia Earhart was not only the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, she held women’s speed and distance records that earned her place as the first woman to receive the Distinguished Flying Cross. As a nurse during World War I, Earhart developed an early concern for her fellow man that helped her champion human rights around the world. Her memorable accomplishments in the air moved her to pen three best-selling books.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 4 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Amelia Earhart 4

    Script:

    A warm summer's day. A young woman's life is radically changed in a matter of hours. 20 hours and 40 minutes to be exact. The time it took Amelia Mary Earhart to become the first woman to fly across the Atlantic . . . as a passenger on a flight toward destiny. On June 18, 1928, Amelia Earhart went from living a rather ordinary life as a social worker to becoming a demi-goddess unable to go anywhere in the world without being worshipped as though an angel from the heavens.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Ansel Adams

    Script:

    Ansel Adams, more than any other individual, brought Yosemite and the national park idea to the American people. His photographs, his letters, his lobbying of Congress, presidents and the National Park Service, spanned seven decades. They served, and still serve, to make millions aware of Yosemite’s beauty and to call attention to the dangers it faces. A craggy-faced man with a sharp nose bent slightly to the left, Ansel Adams was gracious, warm, and welcoming. He made close friends and kept them; he welcomed new friends into his life. He was focused, energetic, and filled with good humor – a master of the pun. He cared about people, he cared about his friends, and he cared passionately about Yosemite.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 19 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Ansel Adams - "The Silver Light"

    Script:

    I was climbing the long ridge west of Mount Clark. It was one of those mornings where the sunlight is burnished with a keen wind and long feathers of cloud move in a lofty sky. The silver light turned every blade of grass and every particle of sand into a luminous metallic splendor; there was nothing, however small, that did not clash in the bright wind, that did not send arrows of light through the glassy air. I was suddenly arrested in the long crunching path up the ridge by an exceedingly pointed awareness of the light. The moment I paused, the full impact of the mood was upon me; I saw more clearly than I have ever seen before or since the minute detail of the grasses ...the small flotsam of the forest, the motion of the high clouds streaming above the peaks... I dreamed that for a moment time stood quietly, and the vision became but the shadow of an infinitely greater world -- and I had within the grasp of consciousness a transcendental experience.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Babe Ruth

    Script:

    Babe Ruth’s presence still looms over Yankee Stadium ... he set countless marks that still stand unchallenged. The crowds loved him, and for 22 years, he gave them more than their money’s worth. He hit the most home runs with a life total of 714. He received the most bases on balls of any man in baseball, 2,056. And he struck out the most times, too, 1,330. His total of 60 home runs in one season, made in 1927, stood for 34 years until in 1961, Roger Maris of the New York Yankees pooled 61 homers, but in a longer playing season. The Babe’s lifetime batting average of .342 is among the highest seven in baseball history.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 5 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Barbara Walters

    Script:

    Barbara was born 73 years ago to a nightclub owner and article producer Lou Walters and his wife Dena. The couple had already lost a son and had an older daughter who was mildly retarded. The family bounced back and forth from Boston to Miami to New York, where they lived in penthouses until her father lost his fortune in the mid 1950's. Barbara, who'd just graduated from Sarah Lawrence College, helped support her parents with her income from a secretarial job. By 1964 she'd become a "Today girl" - her job was essentially to make the male anchor look good, and to look good herself. Eventually, she became the cohost. A couple of dozen pre-Oscar interviews later, Walters signed on as cohost of 20/20. In 1997 she also became co-executive producer of the View- a responsibility she'll keep when, after 25 years, she gives up her weekly 20/20 gig.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Beach Boys

    Script:

    The American rock group, The Beach Boys, are known for their rich vocal harmonies and for songs about cars, love, and surfing in the California sun. The band was formed in 1961 by three brothers from Hawthorne, California - Brian, Carl, and Dennis Wilson, their cousin Mike Love, and a friend Al Jardine. The Beach Boys moved quickly from local to national fame with a run of hit songs during the mid-1960’s, including “Surfin’ U.S.A.” (1963), “Fun, Fun, Fun,” (1964), “I get Around” (1964), “Help me, Rhonda” (1965), and “California Girls” (1965). Based largely on an ideal of California adolescence, the group’s records helped define a style known

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Beethoven

    Script:

    Of all the hundreds of symphonies that have been composed, none can rival in popularity or emotional interest the nine great symphonic works that Beethoven wrote. Beethoven took music off the pedestal of formal beauty, where Haydn and Mozart had left it, and immersed it in the whirlpool of life. He roughened it up until it began to do what he expected it to do ... to express problems, evoke emotions, move and struggle exuberantly. More people can respond at once to a Beethoven symphony than to any other. Many have written fine symphonies, but Beethoven’s remain in a class by themselves, as invaluable a part of our heritage as are Shakespeare’s plays.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 13 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Ben Franklin

    Script:

    Ben Franklin preached the joy of work and practiced what he preached. As a young man, he sometimes worked all night to finish a promised job on time. When he bought paper for his printing shop, he was not too proud to trundle it home himself in a wheelbarrow. On his first journey to Philadelphia, though he had paid his passage, he volunteered to help row the boat down the Delaware, and proved himself to be so useful, that the boatmen didn’t want to take his money. “Diligence is the mother of good luck,” he wrote, “and God gives all things to industry.”

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 8 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Bert Wheeler And Robert Woolsey

    Script:

    Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey were loved by literally millions of movie fans around the entire world in the 1930's. They did 21 feature films together and saved RKO Studios from bankruptcy. They were also RKO's biggest moneymakers when the RKO stable included Cary Grant, Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers, Kathryn Hepburn, Barbara Stanwyck, and a host of other greats.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Betty Crocker

    Script:

    Betty Crocker is an imaginary person. Nonetheless, in a 1945 survey she was named the second-best-known woman in America, after Eleanor Roosevelt. She was “born” in 1921 during a Gold Medal flour promotion in which users completed a puzzle to win a pin cushion. Company executives decided to use the signature of “Betty Crocker” on the prize letters--Betty because the name had a warm approachable feel, and Crocker after an early company director, William G, Crocker. The fictional Ms. Crocker became so popular that she soon had her own products and recipe books, many of which still exist today.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 6 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Betty Crocker

    Script:

    Betty Crocker is an imaginary person. Nonetheless, in a 1945 survey she was named the second-best-known woman in America, after Eleanor Roosevelt. She was “born” in 1921 during a Gold Medal flour promotion in which users completed a puzzle to win a pin cushion. Company executives decided to use the signature of “Betty Crocker” on the prize letters--Betty because the name had a warm approachable feel, and Crocker after an early company director, William G, Crocker. The fictional Ms. Crocker became so popular that she soon had her own products and recipe books, many of which still exist today.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Beyonce Knowles

    Script:

    A Houston native, Beyoncé Knowles is a founding member and chief songwriter of Destiny's Child, one of the biggest selling female acts of all time. With many of the group's hit songs co-written and co-produced by Beyoncé, Destiny's Child has sold more than 33 million records worldwide. When Beyoncé won the 2001 ASCAP Pop Songwriter Of The Year Award, she became the first African-American woman -- and the second woman ever -- to receive that honor.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Bill

    Script:

    He was six feet two inches in height, at least that what he claimed. But he actually appeared to be a full inch taller. Dark hair, blue eyes and usually a somewhat stern face. Due to his normal countenance, some people thought he was probably a hard man. He seldom smiled, but when he did, it was such a wide smile that even the most skeptical could be put at ease. He had large hands, rough and calloused from his years of farming with a team of mules. A light shirt and bib overalls were his normal attire, and if he were going to town, a brown Stetson would certainly be his head covering. A very unassuming man, so when someone happened to call him sir, he would quickly reply, “You can just call me Bill.”

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Bill Cosby Biography

    Script:

    With numerous awards to his credit, Bill Cosby is one of the top names in comedy. As an actor, comedian, writer, and producer, he helped break down racial barriers on television in the 1960s with “I Spy” and later with “The Cosby Show”. Cosby grew up in Philadelphia's Germantown neighborhood as the oldest of four boys and attended Temple University. While at Temple, Cosby landed a job as a bartender at a coffee house. He told jokes there, and eventually started filling in for the house comedian from time to time at a nearby club. Soon, Cosby started performing in New York City and, in 1963, he made an appearance on The Tonight Show, which helped introduce him to a national audience.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Bill Gates

    Script:

    Born in Seattle, Washington, on October 28, 1955, William Henry Gates III is the only son of the three children of Mary and William Henry Gates, Jr. A bright and active child, Bill began cutting classes to hang out at all hours at his private school’s computer center. When he was only 16, he and friend Paul Allen sold their computer-run system to monitor highway traffic and reportedly earned $20,000 -- but business fell off when customers found out that the entrepreneurs were still in high school.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Biography: Hemingway, By Kenneth S. Lynn, Page 592

    Script:

    Around seven o’clock on Sunday morning, Hemingway arose from his bed, went to the kitchen, got the key, opened the storeroom, selected a twelve-gauge, double-barreled English shotgun he had bought at Abercrombie & Fitch, pushed two shells into it, walked upstairs to the foyer, turned the gun against himself and fired. The explosion blew away his entire cranial vault. Whether he had placed the gun barrels in his mouth or pressed them to his forehead is impossible to say.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Boris Yeltsin

    Script:

    For Yeltsin, it must seem a long time since the glory days of 1991, when the anti-Communist rebel easily won his country’s first democratic election. That August, he also became the brave hero who, as tanks encircled the parliament, stood atop one of them and exhorted thousands of civilians to resist the attempted military coup against Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev. If successful, the coup would also have ended Yeltsin’s career--and possibly his life--but he kept his power and became even more popular.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Cary Grant

    Script:

    Cary Grant’s classy film persona and peerless timing are so ingrained in our collective psyche that we tend to confuse the man with the myth. So good was he at playing the icon known as Cary Grant that it was often said he always played the same part--himself. The truth is that he was an underrated actor who brought depth and dimension to his characters, and he never played himself. Of all the roles he created, Cary Grant was his greatest invention.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Charles Lindbergh

    Script:

    Just after 10 p.m. on May 21, 1927, a small silver-nosed airplane circled the Eiffel Tower, then headed northeast over Paris. In the cockpit, the weary young pilot swept his flashlight over the instrument panel to check that the readings were normal. Then he fastened his seat belt and descended toward Le Bourget Aerodrome, where, unbeknownst to him, 100,000 people awaited his arrival. As the plane rolled to a stop, a roar went up from the crowd: “Lindbergh! Lindbergh! Vive Lindbergh!” Charles Lindbergh, an obscure 25-year-old airmail pilot from Minnesota, had just become the first person to fly nonstop 3,600 miles across the Atlantic Ocean--solo, no less.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Charlie Chaplin

    Script:

    Charlie Chaplin is the comic artist of our time. He pioneered the development of film comedy from anarchy to art in just a few short years, and created a screen character whose worldwide impact has never been equaled. Unlike most of his colleagues in the film world, he knew he special. He received international acclaim within months of his film debut, and after just one year, won not only an enormous salary, but complete control of his work. He was an artist who worked at his own pace and in his own style at at time when few other filmmakers enjoyed those luxuries. What set Charlie Chaplin apart from the rest?

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    Washington Backcountry

    Script:

    In the spring of 2010, Bryce Stevens and Andrew Cull had an idea, to create a backcountry route across the state of Washington. Its been done before by other riders, but nobody has ever documented the trip on film, with a website and free GPS tracks made available to the public. When the idea of the new route won the support of the Overland Society, Bryce and Andrew decided to make their vision a reality.

    11 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear keithmichaels's recording

    Hi! 27 year veteran trying to figure out where I belong in VO. I have been very successful in the past, but lately, I seem to be losing a lot of jobs. I am really interested in: 1, The quality of the recording 2. How I use my voice 3. What genre of VO I should focus on I use an AKG perception mic. I am on axis, mic is slightly above my upper lip. I am 6 inches away, I use a gate compressor & limiter, with EQ at the top of the chain. Please visit my website to get a feel for my versatility, in reference to issue 2 above. www.keithmichaelsvoiceimaging.com Thanks for all comments!

    /sites/default/files/Washington Backcountry - Keith Michaels Audition_0.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Keith Michaels, You certainly have a polished sounding voice. It did sound like you were reading instead of telling, and a bit staccato as well. The beeps aren't necessary. The recording quality sounds good (I liked the second take better), and the mic seems to be suited for your voice. Of course when auditioning for jobs it's best to layoff the effects, i.e., EQ, compression, etc. Others may have a different take on this. I'd like to hear commercial and promo genres.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Christopher Reeve

    Script:

    The whole world held its breath when Christopher Reeve struggled for life on Memorial Day, 1995. On the third jump of a riding competition, Reeve was thrown headfirst from his horse in an accident that broke his neck and left him unable to move or breathe. In the years following the accident, Reeve raised much awareness and money for spinal cord research. And in 1998, he penned the heartbreaking, funny and courageous autobiography, "Still Me". As we look back, you'll hear from the Man of Steel himself through interview footage as he talks about his early success on Broadway opposite the legendary Katherine Hepburn, and later the adventure of filming Superman on the streets of New York, and how the movie made him a star. With dignity and sensitivity, he describes the journey he has made - physically, emotionally, spiritually. This is the determined, passionate story of one man, a gifted actor and star.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Coldplay -- Behind The Music

    Script:

    The band Coldplay, formed in January of 1998. Their self-financed demo sessions produced the release of their first EP that May. One of the tracks called "Bigger Stronger', earned the band excellent notices in the UK press. However, they didn’t get signed by a major label until late 1999. [After some touring with new band members and breakthrough hits like "Yellow" and "Shiver," they released their chart-topping debut album, Parachutes, in July of 2000.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 9 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Countess Elizabeth Bathory

    Script:

    Could there have been a female vampire? Hungarian Countess Elizabeth Bathory, known as the Blood Countess, was accused of killing a number of young girls and bathing in their blood. She was convicted and confined to her castle until her death in 1614.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Courtney Love

    Script:

    Courtney Love. The girl with the most cake. The girl with the loudest mouth and the fiercest guitar. The girl of many talents – not least among them the power to shock. Not since Madonna declared that she was like a virgin has someone in the public spotlight so consistently challenged the notion of what it means to be female – and what it means to be well behaved.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Daniel Moynihan

    Script:

    Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who is retiring from the United States Senate after twenty-four years in office, spent his afternoons during the winters of 1942 shining shoes in front of the Wurlitzer Building, on Forty-second Street between Sixth Avenue and Broadway. He was fourteen years old and lived in a small Upper West Side apartment with his mother. He would set up his kit after school each day, and work through the rush hour. A shine cost a nickel; the goal was to bring home a dollar.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Edward Abbey

    Script:

    Edward Abbey

    When Edward Abbey died in 1989 at the age of sixty-two, the American West lost one of its most eloquent and passionate advocates.

    Through his novels, essays, letters, and speeches, Edward Abbey consistently voiced the belief that the West was in danger of being developed to death, and that the only solution lay in the preservation of wilderness.

    Abbey authored twenty-one books in his lifetime, including Desert Solitaire, The Monkey Wrench Gang, The Brave Cowboy, and The Fool's Progress.

    His comic novel The Monkey Wrench Gang helped inspire a whole generation of environmental activism.

    A writer in the mold of Twain and Thoreau, Abbey was a larger-than-life figure as big as the West itself.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Eleanor Roosevelt

    Script:

    Eleanor Roosevelt brought a breezy informality and bustle of activity to the White House. At the inaugural buffet, the President waited his turn to be served like anyone else, and Mrs. Roosevelt helped with the serving. She also horrified chief usher “Ike” Hoover by insisting immediately on operating the elevator herself. “That just isn’t done, Mrs. Roosevelt,” he protested. “It is now,” she said, slipping in alone and closing the door. During Mrs. Roosevelt’s first day at the White House, a woman reporter telephoned and asked for Mrs. Roosevelt’s secretary Malvina Thompson. “Miss Thompson isn’t in,” a voice replied. “May I help?” “Who is this?” asked the reporter. “Mrs. Roosevelt,” was the reply.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Emily Dickinson

    Script:

    Emily Dickinson loved words ardently. Her feeling about them amounted to veneration and her selection of them was ritualistic. In one poem she states “A Word that breathes distinctly has not the power to die.” As artist, she conceived of brevity, not as a way to sketch in miniature, but as a means of achieving the single moment of intensity. Dickinson knew she could not pierce through to the unknowable, but she insisted on asking the questions.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Ernest Hemingway

    Script:

    For over twenty years, Ernest Hemingway spent virtually every fall and winter at Sun Valley, Idaho. Although his legendary haunts were Italy, France, Switzerland, Spain and Cuba, Idaho was his true home. The wild mountain crags, the sunny meadows were his nirvana. The hunting and fishing were always good there. The canoe trip down the Silver Creek or a trek up a pass of the Pahsimeroi (Paw-sim-er-roy) Range unfailingly yielded fresh game for the table. Papa and his fiction thrived on the alternating sessions of high adventure and novel writing.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Ernest Hemingway 2

    Script:

    Across more than half a century, the life and work of Ernest Hemingway have been at the center of a critical controversy. For that, Hemingway himself was largely responsible. From the moment he embarked upon his career as a writer, he presented himself to the world as a man’s man, and in both his published work and his very public behavior he established a heroic image of himself as an athlete and sportsman, a worldly-wise reporter, a battle-scarred soldier, an aficionado of the Spanish bullfight, and a hard-drinking bon vivant.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Fats Waller

    Script:

    Thomas “Fats” Waller began his jazz career early, learned fast, rose quickly, lived hard, and died young. A child prodigy, who was playing piano at age six, his life was a furious burst of energy –and it was all reflected in his music. Welcome to the world of Fats Waller: Joe Louis, Legs Diamond, George Gershwin –he knew them all; Harlem, Hollywood, Paris, London –he saw it all; Sex, fame, success, money –he had it all. His incredible gusto made him one of a kind. Fats was a giant, and he might just live, through his music, forever.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 6 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Florence Nightingale

    Script:

    If you think of Florence Nightingale as a beatific, selfless nurse who spent her life gently tending to the sick and wounded--think again. The real Florence Nightingale spent only three of her 90 years as a nurse. After that, she was a semi-invalid who clung to Victorian mores, actively lobbying against treating nursing as a profession and dismissing women who fought for equality. And the woman considered the founder of modern nursing adamantly refused to recognize the discoveries of modern science. Nevertheless, Nightingale--nicknamed “the lady with a lamp”--managed to make sweeping improvements in health care, setting new standards for sanitation and cleanliness in the treatment of disease and becoming an inspiration for millions.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Frank Lloyd Wright, By Spencer Hart

    Script:

    American architect Frank Lloyd Wright has been called the greatest single influence on twentieth-century design. His 70-year career spanned an era of enormous change in the nation and the world, and he was in the vanguard of those who sought to make architecture relevant to the social and cultural dynamic of their time. After his marriage to Catherine Tobin in his early 20's, and the rapid growth of their family to six children, Wright used his own Oak Park home as a template for his burgeoning ideas on an architecture in which form not only followed function, but became one with it.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Gandhi

    Script:

    Reared in a deeply religious home, Gandhi received an indifferent formal education in India, and in 1888 began law studies in England. In quest of clerical work, he went to South Africa in 1893, and was shocked at the racial discrimination there. He became an advocate for his fellow Indians in South Africa, and undertook a series of challenges to the government that led to jail. After thorough soul-searching, he entered politics in India in 1919, to protest British sedition laws. He emerged as the head of the Indian National Congress, and advocated a policy of non-violent, non-cooperation to achieve Indian independence.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    George Eastman

    Script:

    George Eastman set to work on simplifying the apparatus of photography and came up with the famous Kodak camera. The Eastman story was the stuff of legend. He was the poor widow’s son who started off as a $3 a week clerk, and by dint of hard work and phenomenal determination rose to vast fame and wealth. But he was a decidedly different kind of industrial giant. He had to overcome fierce competition and embarrassing failures as he struggled to make photography easy and affordable for everyone. In the process, he forever changed the way people see their world.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    George Gershwin

    Script:

    It’s very clear. His songs are here to stay. He is one of the Country’s most beloved and prolific composers, and artist whose seemingly facile way with a tune call up images of starry Manhattan skylines, a top hat and tails, the perfect martini. Whether collaborating with brother Ira which he did much of the time until his death at thirty-nine-or other legends, George Gershwin was the consummate crossover artist, a songwriter whose sophisticated and accessible amalgams of jazz, swing, pop, and classical music still percolate in our collective unconscious.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Georgia O'Keeffe

    Script:

    Georgia O'Keeffe revolutionized modern art, both in her time and in the present. And if we understand O'Keeffe's emotional response to nature and her need to create an equivalent in art, we hold the key to her work. In the 1920s she explored this theme in her magnified paintings of flowers, meant to convey that Nature, in all its beauty, was as powerful as the widespread industrialization of the period. After spending her first summer in New Mexico, she began to paint the colorful yet barren landscape, expansive skies and bleached bones that would capture her imagination, and her heart, for the rest of her life.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Georgia O’keefe

    Script:

    Georgia O’Keefe’s rather ordinary childhood on a dairy farm in southern Wisconsin suggested little of the extraordinary life the future American painter would lead. Born November 15, 1887 in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin – a town of 900 near Madison -- O’Keefe and her 6 siblings helped with chores on the large, prosperous farm every day after school. Their mother read to the children until they could read themselves……

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Gertrude Bell

    Script:

    Turning away from the privileged world of the “eminent Victorians,” Gertrude Bell explored, mapped, and excavated the world of the Arabs. Recruited by British intelligence during World War I, she played a crucial role in obtaining the loyalty of Arab leaders. After the war, she played a major role in creating the modern Middle East and was, at the time, considered the most powerful woman in the British Empire. In this masterful biography, Janet Wallach shows us the woman behind these achievements – a woman whose passion and defiant independence were at odds with the confined and custom-bound England she left behind. Gertrude Bell emerges at last in her own right as a vital player on the stage of modern history, and as a woman whose life was both a heartbreaking story and a grand adventure.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Gustave Flaubert

    Script:

    Gustave Flaubert lived most of his life in his country estate of Croisset, near Rouen, in Normandy. He followed a strict regimen of work over many years and produced, slowly and painfully, eight novels of which two or three are masterpieces (Madame Bovary, L’Education Sentimentale), and a volume of three stories (Trois Contes). Flaubert looked upon himself as a romantic. He manifested the romantic’s scorn for the morality and the customs of the bourgeoisie. From the second generation of romantic writers, from Gautier and the Art for Art’s Sake movement, he inherited the scrupulous care for the technique, for the perfection of the written sentence.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Harry Houdini

    Script:

    Houdini was the son of a rabbi who emigrated from Hungary to the United States and settled in Appleton, Wisconsin. He became a trapeze performer in circuses at an early age, and after settling in New York City in 1882, he performed in vaudeville shows there without much success. From about 1900, Houdini began to earn an international reputation for his daring feats of extrication from shackles, ropes and handcuffs, and from various locked containers ranging from milk cans to coffins to prison cells. In a typical act he was shackled with chains and placed in a box that was locked, roped, and weighted.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Helen Keller

    Script:

    Helen Keller had an ageless quality about her ... inherent even in her looks ... in keeping with her amazing life story. Blind, deaf, and mute from early childhood, she rose above her triple handicap to become one of the best known characters in the modern world, and an inspiration to both the blind and seeing everywhere. When she visited Japan after World War II, boys and girls in remote villages ran to greet her, crying “Helen Keller, Helen Keller!” Her name had penetrated jungles even before the days of radio or motion pictures. Although warmed by this human reaction, she had no wish to be set aside from the rest of mankind.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Hilary Swank

    Script:

    It’s no trick to see why Hilary Swank, having won the Oscar for her fearless, inspired, gender-melting performance in Boys Don’t Cry, should choose The Affair of the Necklace as her follow-up vehicle. Set amid the decadent French monarchy on the eve of the Revolution, the film allows Swank to cast her image back to an era when men and women occupied roles as corseted as their clothing; its her not-so-subtle attempt to reassert her femininity in a “prestige” chick flick.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    History of LSD

    Script:

    In 1938, a Swiss chemist named Albert Hofmann synthesized LSD for the first time while studying ergots, a type of fungus. Though the pharmaceutical company that he worked for, Sandoz, didn't have any interest in the compound, Hofmann found himself inexplicably drawn to it. Five years later, in the spring of 1943, he synthesized it again, noticing that it seemed to have unusual properties: After accidentally absorbing small amounts through his fingertips one day in the lab, Hofmann had to leave work early, under the effects of what he called "a not unpleasant intoxicated-like condition." A few days later, he experimented with taking what he thought was a small dose of LSD, about 250 micrograms (a common dose now is more on the order of 100 micrograms), and proceeded to trip out of his mind, an experience he describes in his book LSD: My Problem Child.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Hogarth’s World

    Script:

    William Hogarth who lived from :1697 – 1764, was an artist and engraver. He specialized in satire, which would be referred to these days as, heavy handed moralizing on the wages of sin. His plates were so popular that they were actually pirated. Leading Parliament to pass the Hogarth Act of 1735, to protect copyright. The plates provide us with an invaluable look at life in Georgian London. His eight plate series ,The Harlot's Progress, traces the life of a country lass from her arrival in London to an imprisoned whore. In The Rake's Progress, the debauched protagonist is seen at one stage being entertained in a Russell Street tavern by a bevy of prostitutes, one of whom strokes his chest while the other relieves him of his pocket watch.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    • jcdc September 20, 2010
    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Howard Carter

    Script:

    During the short winter season, some of the wealthier foreigners dabbled in archaeology driven by scientific curiosity and inquisitiveness. But the ultimate – an intact tomb of the Pharaoh had not yet been found. One man hoped to change that. Howard Carter, the sickly son of an English painter, had first come to Egypt as an artist at the age of 17. He fell in love with the ancient ruins and proved a capable archaeologist despite a difficult personality.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    • jcdc September 20, 2010
    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Intro to "Lincoln: The Untold Stories

    Script:

    In the years following his violent death, Abraham Lincoln became the most revered President in American history. But as time passed, what would happen to the story of the real man behind the myth?

    Lincoln’s friend, William Herndon, wanted to leave an accurate and personal record. He spent thirty years documenting the most confidential memories of Lincoln’s closest friends and family. But for more than a century, these recollections were buried in a disorganized and nearly illegible collection of papers filed away in the Library of Congress.

    Now, Herndon’s documents are surfacing for the first time and what they reveal is a portrait of Lincoln as an earthy, fallible and often troubled man. Join us as we go in search of history to discover -- Lincoln: The Untold Stories.

    (Performance notes: introduction ran 1:00m on air.)

    Submitted by TxTom

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Jacqueline Kennedy

    Script:

    Soon after Jacqueline’s husband was elected President of the United States in 1960, she confessed, “I feel as though I had just turned into a piece of public property”, And yet, however daunting the prospect of becoming a national icon, Mrs. Kennedy embraced her role with winning enthusiasm and supreme political savvy.

    Throughout her husband’s political career, Jackie proved his perfect match in wit and finesse. Early on in his 1960 presidential campaign, her uncommonly chic wardrobe caught the attention of the press, all but eclipsing her less stylish rival, Pat Nixon. In response to a particularly sensational article claiming that she spent $30,000 a year to support her addiction to Parisian Couture, Mrs. Kennedy quipped, “I couldn’t spend that much unless I wore sable underwear”.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Jim Carrey

    Script:

    Famous for screen roles featuring rubber-jawed antics, bodily contortions, and bathroom humor, comic star Jim Carrey has been called Jerry Lewis on speed, Dick Van Dyke on acid, and Mr. Slapstick. In 1998, however, the critical commentary about his latest film was in a very different vein. Words like “breakthrough” and “revelation” and “career expanding” were used, as well as a term not previously applied to his cinematic efforts: “possible Oscar”.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    John F. Kennedy, Jr.

    Script:

    The story of John F. Kennedy Jr., heir to America’s most famous and star-crossed political family, begins with the marriage of his parents in 1953. Jack Kennedy was the junior senator from Massachusetts – a handsome young man, who had inherited the Kennedy family’s political ambitions when his older brother Joe was killed in World War II. Kennedy’s bride, Jacqueline Bouvier, was one of America’s most beautiful debutantes. She had worked as an inquiring photographer for the Washington Times Herald, and had met Jack the year before at a Washington dinner party. Their wedding was the social event of the year.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    John Glenn

    Script:

    When the U.S. Manned Space Program began in 1958, John Glenn was selected to be one of the original seven Mercury astronauts. When Glenn successfully piloted his “Friendship 7” spacecraft three times around Earth in just less than five hours on February 20, 1962, he became an instant national hero. In fact, he may have become too heroic for his own good--although Glenn was anxious to go up again, President Kennedy reportedly pulled him from flight status, worried what would happen if a figure of such adulation should perish in a future flight.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    John Muir Quote

    Script:

    In God's wildness lies the hope of the world - the great fresh unblighted, unredeemed wilderness. The galling harness of civilization drops off, and wounds heal ere we are aware. From the unpublished journals of John Muir.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    John Singer Sargent

    Script:

    Although an American, John Singer Sargent did not even see the United States until he was 20. He was born in Florence on January 12, 1856. His mother, an amateur artist, had persuaded her doctor husband, that her sickly constitution required the healing climes of Europe. Her son remained an expatriate for the rest of his life, making only ten trips to the United States. The young Sargent learned to speak French, Italian, and German as the family flitted to southern European cities to escape the cold, and to resorts in the Alps and the Pyrenees to escape the heat.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    John Wilkes Booth

    Script:

    As war raged across the country, John Wilkes Booth became a star. In 1862, he performed in St. Louis, Chicago, Baltimore, New York, Boston, Louisville, Lexington, and Cincinnati. He was Hamlet, McBeth, Othello, and Romeo. Appearing 167 times, Booth played 18 different roles in the course of a single year.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Libby Larsen

    Script:

    Libby Larsen is a composer committed to the idea of modern music that is accessible to a broad audience. And although she earned her doctorate in composition, she makes her living solely on commissioned works.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Lincoln: The Untold Stories

    Script:

    On the night of April 14, 1865, an actor named John Wilkes Booth quietly worked his way through the halls of Ford’s Theater in Washington D.C. President Abraham Lincoln was enjoying one of the first moments of restful entertainment he had experienced since the Civil War began. Then, shortly after 10 P.M. Wilkes slipped into the unguarded presidential box.

    Firing one shot at close range, Wilkes killed the President. A nation went into mourning over the loss of the remarkable man who had reunited a divided country. In the days following Lincoln’s death, his former law partner, William Herndon grieved as he watched thousands of Americans pay their final respects to their fallen leader.

    For seventeen years, Herndon sat across from Lincoln in a series of law offices in Springfield, Illinois -- one of which still exists across the street from the old state capitol.
    But as Herndon perceived the public’s desire to mythologize his former partner, he felt a need to search for the facts and truths of Lincoln’s life...not fictions...not fables.

    Submitted by TxTom

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Lorraine Hansberry

    Script:

    Lorraine Hansberry was a playwright, born in Chicago. She is best known as the author of A Raisin in the Sun. A Broadway success and later a movie, the novel explored the struggles of a black family to escape from the ghetto. Hansberry died prematurely in 1965, before she was able to fulfill her promise as an eloquent spokesperson for African-Americans’ trials and aspirations.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Lucky Man

    Script:

    Lucky Man – A memoir by Michael J. Fox

    Chapter One - A Wake-up Call
Gainseville, Florida – November 1990

    I woke to find the message in my left hand. It had me trembling. It wasn’t a fax, telegram, memo, or the usual sort of missive bringing disturbing news. In fact, my hand held nothing at all. The trembling was the message.

    
I was feeling a little disoriented. I’d only been shooting the movie in Florida for a week or so, and the massive, pink-laquered, four-poster bed surrounded by the pastel hues of the University Center Hotel’s Presidential Suite still came as a bit of a shock each morning.


    It was Tuesday morning, so while I couldn’t recall the exact details of the previous night’s debauchery, it was a pretty safe bet that it had something to do with Monday Night Football. In those first few seconds of consciousness, I didn’t know what time it was, but I could be fairly certain that I hadn’t overslept. If I was needed on set, there would have been a phone call from my assistant, Brigette.

    If I had to leave the hotel at 10:00 A.M., let’s say, she would have called at 9:30, again at 9:40, then finally at 9:50 she would have taken the elevator from her floor up to mine, let herself into my room, propelled me to the shower, and slipped into the kitchen to brew a pot of coffee.

    None of this having transpired, I knew I had at least a few minutes.
    Even with the lights off, blinds down, and drapes pulled, an offensive amount of light still filtered into the room. Eyes clenched shut, I placed the palm of my left hand across the bridge of my nose in a weak attempt to block the glare.

    A moth’s wing—or so I though—fluttered against my right cheek. I opened my eyes, keeping my hand suspended an inch or two in front of my face so I could finger-flick the little beastie across the room. That’s when I noticed my pinkie. It was trembling, twitching, auto-animated. How long this had been going on I wasn’t exactly sure. But now that I noticed it, I was surprised to discover that I couldn’t stop it.
    Weird—maybe I slept on it funny. Five or six times in rapid succession I pumped my left hand into a fist, followed by a vigorous shaking out. Interlocking the fingers of each hand steeple-style with their opposite number, I lifted them up and over behind my head and pinned them to the pillow.


    Tap. Tap. Tap. Like a moisture-free Chinese water torture, I could feel a gentle drumming at the back of my skull. If it was trying to get my attention, it had succeeded. I withdrew my left hand from behind my head and held it in front of my face, steadily, with fingers splayed—like the bespectacled X-ray glasses geek in the old comic book ad. I didn’t have to see the underlying skeletal structure; the information I was looking for was right there in the flesh; a thumb, three stock-still fingers, and out there on the lunatic fringe, a spastic pinkie.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Lucky Man Part 2

    Script:

    If I had to leave the hotel at 10:00 A.M., let’s say, she would have called at 9:30, again at 9:40, then finally at 9:50 she would have taken the elevator from her floor up to mine, let herself into my room, propelled me to the shower, and slipped into the kitchen to brew a pot of coffee.

    None of this having transpired, I knew I had at least a few minutes.
    Even with the lights off, blinds down, and drapes pulled, an offensive amount of light still filtered into the room. Eyes clenched shut, I placed the palm of my left hand across the bridge of my nose in a weak attempt to block the glare.

    A moth’s wing—or so I though—fluttered against my right cheek. I opened my eyes, keeping my hand suspended an inch or two in front of my face so I could finger-flick the little beastie across the room. That’s when I noticed my pinkie. It was trembling, twitching, auto-animated. How long this had been going on I wasn’t exactly sure. But now that I noticed it, I was surprised to discover that I couldn’t stop it.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Mae West

    Script:

    Mae West was the daughter of a boxer and a corset model, who became a vaudevillian at the age of fourteen. At thirty three, in 1926, she wrote, produced and directed a Broadway show called 'Sex', and landed in jail on obscenity charges. After wowing Broadway in 'Diamond Lil', she signed with Paramount in 1932 and moved to Hollywood. Her risque 1930s comedies were ground-breaking, in terms of both sexual content and roles for women. Her films included 'Night After Night' and 'She Done Him Wrong', which was the film version of 'Diamond Lil', and broke all existing box-office records, credited with saving Paramount from having to sell out to its rival, MGM.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Mariah Carey

    Script:

    That stunning voice--no one can deny its power. It's one of the reasons why fans have made Mariah Carey the only artist to have a hit single every year of the '90s. Now known as one of pop's most powerful performers, it took 20 years for the girl from Long Island to become a pop princess--and even less time to watch as some of the luster faded from her glittery life. Born to an opera-singing mother and a Venezuelan father, Carey struggled with identity issues as a young woman. While living in Manhattan trying to jumpstart her music career, Carey took on a series of odd jobs, including singing backup for Brenda K. Starr. But it was a chance meeting with Tommy Mottola, the president of Columbia Records, that would change her life. Mottola quickly signed Carey to her first record contract, and the two later married. To outsiders, it seemed a perfect end to the fairy tale. But in 1997, the fairy tale ended when divorce hit. She dropped Columbia for a multimillion-dollar deal with Virgin. And then, with the less-than-stellar performance of her new single and her first starring role in the movie Glitter, Mariah Carey found herself in a hospital recuperating from exhaustion.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Moe Howard: Not Such A Stooge

    Script:

    Moe was the business-minded one of the group. He knew that Curly liked to spend his money on partying and women, and Larry liked to spend his at the racetrack. So, he drew up an agreement where Larry and Curly turned over a certain percentage of their salaries to him. He, in turn, invested it for them. The result was that, while Larry and Curly were not as wealthy as Moe was (he invested far more of his own money in real estate and was quite well off), he ensured that their spendthrift habits did not result in their being broke when their careers ended.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Motown 25

    Script:

    Motown's 25th anniversary was one of Michael Jackson's first public acts as a star outside and beyond the Jacksons, and it was clear that he was not only one of the most thrilling live performers in pop music, but that he was perhaps more capable of inspiring an audience's imagination than any single pop artist since Elvis Presley. There are times when you know you are hearing or seeing something extraordinary, something that captures the hopes and dreams popular music might aspire to, and that might unite and inflame a new audience, and that time came that night, on TV screens across the nation – the sight of a young man staking out his territory, and just starting to lay claim to his rightful pop legend.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Mozart

    Script:

    Born with absolute pitch, infallible rhythm, and a natural comprehension of harmony, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had come into this world with a complete gift. This is how, at the age of four, the child began to play the clavier, and at five, picked up a violin and, reading at sight, staggered through six trios with his father and a friend. The child read and wrote musical notes before he could do as much with letters. Compositions dating from his sixth year are recognizable from the opening bars as the music of Mozart, and nobody else. Graceful and sure, spirited, precise, and brave, they are the work of a unique stylist and a great soul.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 7 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Nostradamus

    Script:

    Nostradamus. His name has resounded through the centuries; shadowed in legend and mystery. Who was this amazing 16th century mystic who accurately predicted future world events more than 400 years before they actually happened? These unbelievable predictions include the French Revolution, the rise and fall of Napoleon, the rise of Adolph Hitler, the Kennedy assassinations and man’s walk on the moon!

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Pablo Picasso

    Script:

    A woman is a woman, according to history. But to Pablo Picasso, a woman was something else again. A combination of lines, forms, and colors. Picasso changed the combination to suit his moods, and his result was seldom Eve-like. The woman may have elephant ears, crossed eyes, two noses. In the name of art, Picasso transformed natural appearances for well over half a century. People who don’t like unconventional art say he spoofed the public, and the public itself often scoffed at his works. When his chief masterpiece, Guernica, was first shown, many thought it looked like a jigsaw puzzle. But a multitude of artists now following in his footsteps believe Picasso was liberating art from age-old academic tradition.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Pillsbury Doughboy Dead at 81

    Script:

    The Pillsbury Doughboy died Monday of a severe yeast infection and complications from repeated pokes to the belly. He was 81.

    Doughboy was buried in a lightly greased coffin.

    Dozens of celebrities turned out, including Mrs. Butterworth, Hungry Jack, Betty Crocker, The Hostess Twinkies, and Captain Crunch. The California Rasins Choir sang The Loafs's Prayer.

    The grave site was pilled high with flours as longtime friend Aunt Jemima delivered the eulogy, describing Doughboy as a man who, "never knew how much he was kneaded".

    Doughboy rose quickly in show business but his later life was filled with many turnovers. He was not considered a very smart cookie, wasting much of his dough on half-baked schemes.

    Despite his being a little flaky at times, and even crusty as an old man, he was considered a roll model for millions.

    Toward the end it was thought he'd rise once again, but he was no tart.

    His second wife, Play Dough, survives Doughboy. They have two children and one in the oven. Mrs. Dough said of their 60 year relationship, "It was a piece of cake."

    The funeral was held at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. May he rest in yeast, I mean peace.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 5 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Pillsbury Doughboy Dead At 81

    Script:

    Pillsbury Doughboy Dead at 81
    The Pillsbury Doughboy died Monday of a severe yeast infection and complications from repeated pokes to the belly. He was 81.
    Doughboy was buried in a lightly greased coffin.
    Dozens of celebrities turned out, including Mrs. Butterworth, Hungry Jack, Betty Crocker, The Hostess Twinkies, and Cap’n Crunch. The California Rasins Choir sang The Loafs's Prayer.
    The grave site was piled high with flours as longtime friend Aunt Jemima delivered the eulogy, describing Doughboy as a man who, "never knew how much he was kneaded".
    Doughboy rose quickly in show business but his later life was filled with many turnovers. He was not considered a very smart cookie, wasting much of his dough on half-baked schemes.
    Despite his being a little flaky at times, and even crusty as an old man, he was considered a roll model for millions.
    Toward the end it was thought he'd rise once again, but he was no tart.
    His second wife, Play Dough, survives Doughboy. They have two children and one in the oven. Mrs. Dough said of their 60 year relationship, "It was a piece of cake."
    The funeral was held at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. May he rest in yeast, I mean peace.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Rasputin - The Mad Monk

    Script:

    St. Petersburg, for over 200 years, the capitol of imperial Russia. In 1916, with the empire locked in a disastrous war and on the verge of a shattering revolution, St. Petersburg teemed with rumors about a man they called “Temnyi” - “The Dark One.” Grigori Rasputin.

    They said he was a lustful, mad monk. A holy devil who preached the word of God and practiced every form of corruption. They said he had hypnotized the mighty Tzar and seduced his wife, the Tzarina. In fact, Raspuitn was allowed even into the bedrooms of the Tzar’s children.

    Of the reason for his presence was a closely guarded secret. He, and he alone, could soothe and heal the desperately sick child who was the heir to the Romanov throne.

    Even while he was alive, legend replaced reality in stories about Rasputin. His bizarre death only confirmed his reputation as the very embodiment of evil...a reputation which endures to this day.

    The truth about the rise of Grigori Rasputin is stranger, more powerful and more moving than the legend of the satanic mad monk.

    --submitted by TxTom

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top

    66 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear rimasden@gmail.com's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-111773/script-recording-91151.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I found your pacing and clarity to be very good. You have a warm, trustworthy quality to your voice that I find appealing.

    I missed a couple of words. 'Elephant ears' was a little lost (or misheard entirely, apologies if so).

    I found your voice compelling to listen to and I think you chose your subject well.

    Good sounds quality. I'm not an expert, but it sounded very dry and nothing distract my ear.

    Congratulations on a great tape.

    Back to top

    2 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear composertim's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-637/Claude Debussy 2 090110.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You have a beautiful voice. I would have liked to hear you slow down and put more weight on "he heard things differently" and on the final sentence.

    Peer Feedback:

    I just submitted a recording of this same script and would appreciate your comments since you chose it as well. I adore anything having to do with French culture, and Debussy is no exception. I agree with Shana Cohen. Since Debussy was an Impressionist composer, I think a slower read would've matched the mood of his music. That being said, I think I have a tendency to be too slow, so who knows? Hope this helps and good luck!

    Back to top

    4 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Tom Lennon's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-210/Claude Debussy-FULL MIX.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Check the pronunciation of Debussy.

    Peer Feedback:

    You are right - guess I got lazy. it's duh-byoo-SEE.

    OK, I know the previous sentence now makes no sense - We have a Lone Ranger working this site. He swoops in, tells me I pronounce things wrong - I put up a new take - and he disappears - critique and all.

    Thank you masked man.

    Back to top

    21 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear johnny k.'s recording

    Kinda new to the recording end with a little, and I mean little, experience on the voice side. Would apppreciate any constructive, or destructive for that matter, critiquing that you wanna throw my way. Thanks!!! JK

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-15461/script-recording-34712.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hello
    First of all i defenetly hear passion and Will to create something in your delivery, Wich is in my opinion is the first element for anything you do in life.
    I hear variety in your read but its very rushed, try to relax and don't hurry that much. Let your audience consume your words, understand what your talking about.
    regards
    balazs

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for for the i/p Kispuszla. Much appreciated and understood after another listen!
    Regards. JK

    Peer Feedback:

    I'd agree with Balazs. Your energy is great but the pace is way too fast. Recall that this is voice over and that means your voice would be heard over visuals, which the audience needs time to view and digest as well. In a documentary, the visual tempo allows for breaks in the narration too. Take your time and see if you can relate the story here.

    Back to top

    23 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear knm_voice@yahoo.com's recording

    mid way in the spot, the fridge in my motel starts humming,, so if you can ignore that,, love to hear what else you think of the take

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-2697/script-recording-27864.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    No problem with the fridge. The read was good and the tone pleasant to the ears. Your choice of music period. I did feel rushed though. Most notably in "He spent many years in Switzerland, becoming a Swiss citizen in 1901, and gaining his Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1905 from Zurich University." You rushed past the coma after Switzerland making the sentence say something altogether different. It sounded as if it took years for him to become a citizen when in reality there are three distinct thoughts expressed in the sentence. Nice effort.

    Peer Feedback:

    Overall, not a bad read but I think there are some areas that need improvement. It tended to have a monotonous quality to it since there was little variation from sentence to sentence. It also felt a bit rushed, as if you were racing to get through it. Try to picture a friend you are TALKING to rather than READING to. Also, be careful with the text since you missed the words "theories" and "gaining". That's my take. Keep at it!

    E

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi KNM,

    I have to agree with Elton and Richurd, the read was a little rushed, but overall it wasn't a bad read and the music bed was a good a choice. I would try this one over and just pace it a little slower and add just a tad more emotion. Good job! LCW.

    Peer Feedback:

    I would have to agree with previous comments re: pacing and with elton on overall tone feeling a bit monotonous.

    Peer Feedback:

    ok, working on not being monotonus, cool! Thanks! Some of my other recordings, I got feed back that I was emoting to much,, so now to find a middle ground

    Peer Feedback:

    knm, what's your hotel recording setup? this sounded way better than the last one I tried. I need to come up with a descent setup soon. I'm on the road almost every week, and I'm missing out on some tasty auditions......
    cheers, and thanks,
    DS

    Peer Feedback:

    I have a Yeti Pro mic from Blue, it can do both Anolog , or USB, and its awsome. Its on a stand, with a shock mount and a pop screen, also from blue. For this recording and most of them now, I go into a Alesis Docking station, with an Ipad 2 on it. The Ipad has VC audio por ( and Garage band lite) on it. I mostly use VC Pro. Once recorded, I can take the Ipad out, and take it with me. I may do some ruff editing oni t,, then I can transefer to one of my computers via the internet. Where I work with it in Audacity. I have been trying to work out some decent sound "proofing" but nothing real happy with yet. have been thinking of getting the Porta booth pro. While reading the script, I use either the Ipad or Iphone , or my mini computer, so I dont have fan noise frm my larger computer. the Ipad and Iphone have Pro Prompter,, I've use dit a couple of times,, like it.. You can put the script on the Ipad,, and controll the scrolling via the iphone.

    Peer Feedback:

    So what do you take on the road with you? the Yeti Pro (I got one too. love it in the home studio on a micstand in the booth, but it's pretty bulky), shock mount, desktop stand, and pop screen? I assume you carry all that in a separate hard case.
    I usually travel with a full briefcase and a roll-aboard...thinking about adding the hard case for the audio gear, but this causes significantly more baggage overhead (your only allowed 2 bags on the plane)....trying to find a compact solution that has good quality. hmmm.

    I carry a macbook, so the recording/editing platform is not a problem.

    How do you set up the room? do you try to reduce room noise?

    thanks again,
    DS

    Peer Feedback:

    I understand your dilemma ,, In my case. In the last 5 or 6 years,, I've maybe been home a total of 4 months. So, when I first deploy to a new location, I don’t fly. I have 6 large “sea” trunks. One of which has all my electronics. ( once I get to the location,, then I might fly back for weekend,, but have all my stuff with me) As far as ambient sound control, I went to a local target and bought one of the foam bed toppers for a twin size bed. One with all the waves, and shapes. I cut it up,, One piece I cut the width of the space between my pop screen arm, and the bottom of the shock mount. I double it over, and cramp it in between the mic and the stand. Width wise, it sticks out from the center of the mic about 8 inches per side. With it being doubled over, the sides pillow out a bit, and give a bit of side coverage. Next I went to Lowes, and for less than $20, got a couple 8” sticks of ½ PVC pipe, a pvc cutter, pvc corners, pvc “t”s , and pvc caps, and some small nylon cord. Then I went by a craft store, and got one of the big needles for doing cross stitch ( as a side note,, if you ever want to get attention from the front desk at a hotel,,, Look like me, and walk by the front desk of a Hampton Inn carting tools, and PVC pipe. True I work as an eng. for nuclear,, but I don’t look the part, no pocket protector, no nerd glasses, I look like a mix between pro-wrestler, the guys on the most wanted posters, and Fred Flintstone , in the not to distant past, when I was in a little better shape, I use to get stopped regularly in public by people thinking I was a pro wrestler, and them wanting autographs,, yes I’m rocking the bald guy with a goatee look,, but I was rocking it long before it was the thing to do,, and yes I did do competitive full contact fighting 20 and 4-never knocked out,, so just imagine that look,, making cartoon voices,, and so on..... meanwhile back to our story ) I cut strips of the bed pad, about 1.5 ft across, and 2.5 tall. I made a frame from the pvc about three inches wider and taller. At the top , 90 degree corners, at the bottom, “t”s. The I added about 4 inch run of pvc, to another set of “t” ruining horizontal this time instead of vertical. From the bottom “t”,s, I have 4 inch runs of pvc, that run horizontal, and at 90 degrees to the frame, for balance I put caps on the ends,, not for looks, but the tees are fatter then the pipe, so with out caps,, it wont sit flat.. I made three sets of these. I took the needle, and sowed the cord into the foam, and around the frame. Note- I did not pvc glue any of this together. Its not a load bearing unit,, this all fit together fairly tight. So I disassemble it when I travel , and use the foam to protect my electronics. I also got one of the both mats with rubber backing, long shag. That I put on the desk top, to kill vibration and bounce back.

    Peer Feedback:

    BTW, the sea trunks I use are awsome,, I find them at walmart most of the time,, they are a good, hard case cheap! they have wheels on one end, a place for a lock, very stackable roomy, blah blah blag,, they are "Sterilite Footlocker" , walmart item number 0007314984210. between my strogae locker and my travle gear I have about 30 of them. They run fom about 15 to 18 bucks, they go up around time for kids to go off to school.. I've also found them at dollar general stores, and big lots.

    Back to top

    11 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Olrac's recording

    Any and all feedback welcome. =)

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-4839/script-recording-21934.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Good stuff. You've got a great, rich voice and I could hear this being done on the history channel. With it being a historical biography, however, be careful not to be so dry the entire time that the audience is lulled into a feeling like a school lecture. Add some smile to it here and there. great stuff overall!

    Back to top

    29 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear TxTom's recording

    Trying to adjust to new mic pre. Have more flexibility with this one than with the older one. Performance was not meant for prime time, I'm testing the setup. Please give critical listen.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5471/script-recording-22883.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Tom, sounds great. Good pacing and clarity.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hey Tom,

    I like the sound quality of this piece over the Fiji one, for what it's worth.

    Peer Feedback:

    It's worth a lot, Bill! Nice to see you back on the board! I'm fiddlin' with the new preamp and I think I had the gain too high on the Fiji read. Added a little more noise on that one. Thanks for checking in on it as well, Javier.

    Peer Feedback:

    Tom, I agree with everyone the read was quite good. There's one thing bothering me though. I can't shake the feeling that your too close to the mic. Your clear as a bell but I think your new setup may be more sensitive than your use to. I checked out your post on the Twilight Zone and while I was at it I gave the read another listen. It is amazing how crappy a vocal can get overnight! I almost thought I posted the wrong vocal. Unfortunately, my critical ear resurfaced and told me what a piece of garbage it was. I'm going to have to do it again and wait a day or two before posting.

    Peer Feedback:

    I'm dealing with distance from mic and levels, Rich...you're not wrong in that the new preamp has changed what I was used to. I'm still trying to convince the wife to let me treat one of the closets. I was, however, curious as to what my actual distance from my mic was and I had my wife watch me do a read and show me how far away I was and it measured 9 inches AND it's to the side of my face as I have a document clip attached to the side of my harlan box. It may take a few tries to get everything just right...and if I can convince my better half that I MIGHT be able to do something with this stuff, she might let me put up some treatment in one of the closets!

    I do have to kinda laugh though...I only did this read as to test the system. I wasn't really trying to 'get it right' so much...just get some sounds through the system. I appreciate everyone's comments.

    Oh, and yes, Rich...I've had second day regrets of my own files. Sounds good after tedious editing/listening and then the next morning...reality. More than a few times!

    Peer Feedback:

    I knew I was right! I have one of those at home myself. Do you know what I found out? It's all huge conspiracy. Organized and directed by the OEMI (Organization of Evil Mother In-Laws). When we were young and used to go out and play ball, we assumed that girls played with dolls. Well they did indeed. Under the direction of future mother in-laws they were given GI Joe dolls and taught how to control them. The first thing they learned was that they were the better half. This training went on from infancy to marriage and then retained on a consulting basis there after. I'm telling you this so you'll better understand what it is we're up against. As for reclaiming our rightful place as kings of our castle that will take time, generations in fact. There is in fact hope for future generations of our progeny if we start to train them now. We however, are screwed. They're masters of control, that's why we do the only thing we learned to do, recluse ourselves to watching ball on TV.

    Peer Feedback:

    heh...good one.

    Back to top

    24 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear john.mcloughlin's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-74677/script-recording-63587.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    You have good pronunciation and good variance in your voice that makes it very good to listen to. As a possible improvement you may want to slow down just a bit.

    Peer Feedback:

    Your delivery has a definite announce quality to it. It's as if you're addressing an audience instead of a single pair of ears. The difference is the elusive "conversational delivery." Imagine reading like this to your wife/friend/partner/etc. They'd ask you "why are you 'doing a voice' at me?" Read more casually...more personally. That will get you closer to that preferred conversational delivery.

    Peer Feedback:

    I echo what Tom said. He provided a valuable tip to me recently, summarizing here: Leave the announcer at the door and just tell your best friend. I think you'll find it changes your tone, pace and delivery. It did for me. Good luck!

    Peer Feedback:

    John --
    I like your read. I have a slightly different take. I don't think this read needs to be intimate or talking-to-a-friend, necessarily. That approach can get stale when everybody's doing it (or trying to…)

    I think you made it a "big read", like the regaling of a storyteller. Not a bad approach. I think your voice and energy pulls it off fairly well.

    I think you need to improve your recording environment, because it sounded like monaural am radio -- unless, of course, you were deliberately doing the read as a storyteller on am radio, sort of Paul-Harvey-esque…

    anyways, nice read.
    cheers.
    Dave Saunders.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for the feedback all!
    My approach was Hal Holbrook playing Mark Twain talking about Ben Franklin.so the storyteller motif was an accurate assessment. I understand going for the conversational even in a "big read" and to me some of this read could use more of that focus. The recording environment definitely needs adjustment and I am making strides to get that in place but I felt I needed to get out there and start recording.
    Thanks again! I appreciate your taking the time to listen and critique.
    Best,
    John

    Back to top

    26 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Melissa Davis's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-90040/script-recording-74543.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    First. The recording quality is much improved over your previous posts. There is still a little low rumble and "air/static" sound. You might consider applying a high pass filter at about 60Hz or so.

    The word "preached" appears twice in the first sentence - the first one got a little smushed while the second one was clear.

    The delivery was just a little stilted - sort of word after word after word after word - without subtle pauses or the elongating of certain words for stress (or just savoring them as words). An example would be: "and proved himself to be sooo-uuuseful". (And that's exaggerating the point a bit, but by elongating those yummy vowels just a touch, it interrupts the "rhythm" enough to be interesting to the listener.) "Trundle" is another fun word - how often do you hear it or use it in conversation? It's sooo 18th century. Be playful with it - give it a kind of grunt or darker tone. (After all, "trundling" a wheelbarrow full of paper is physically taxing. And what image do you have in your mind, watching Franklin do that? Kinda funny, right?)

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you James - very helpful! I'll do some more research on the "rumble." I have been experimenting with different settings, mic placement etc as I want to make sure my audio is professional. Great insight on the words too. I'm still trying to find the balance of expression to give to the different reads/genres I work on.

    Peer Feedback:

    Melissa:

    Good quality. I had sound quality problems when I started six months ago and had to relocate to a basement corner. Also, I purchased some great, movable sound deadening panels from Clear Sonic. I know one of our Audio Engineers uses the same panels.

    Personally I've found what works best for me is to start my recordings by talking to myself about the script as if I'm talking to someone who just learned I'm studying to be a Voice Actor. Then at the right moment I just start the script, hoping to capture the same casual moment. I have a big booming, announcer like voice, but when I ramp it down, my read has very low energy and monotone.

    Phew...hard work. Good luck and keep at it!!

    Back to top

    14 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear toddzilla987's recording

    Trying a new genre, what do you think?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-1903/script-recording-74567.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Emphasis was really over done and sometimes in the wrong places. The start BEN FRANKLIN!!! seemed way over done for example. I almost jumped out of my chair. And why A-L-L night? We won't even talk about T-r-u-n-d-l-e. The flow was never there. I never felt like you were just telling me about Ben Franklin as you might talk to a friend. For some reason you were shouting at me like this was being played on ESPN not the History Channel. Don't try to make this more dramatic than it is. Why the huge stop after "work"? Now go do it again and stop thinking it should sound like a dramatic movie trailer and just tell the story. I think your voice is probably very good for this if you just stop scaring the listener. No one talks to a friend the way this sounds.

    Peer Feedback:

    Well, I'm hard-pressed to imagine a venue where this delivery would be proper...perhaps on a Saturday morning TV show specifically for kids. But in reality, words like "trundle" would be over the heads of most kids...so that's not a likely place meant for this script.

    You're over-emphasizing almost every aspect of the delivery. Announcery in tone, and oddly inflected, this would need to be brought down in emphasis and read naturally as if to a single person to pass muster.

    Peer Feedback:

    Yep. have to concur. Sounds more like an informercial for the Chop-a-Matic or a used car dealer that a Ben Bio.

    Peer Feedback:

    OK. This work is tough! I've been at it for six months and only now starting to understand how to ramp up my energy without over emphasizing words so I don't sound like a DJ. Think about every day conversation you may have with a close friend, or perhaps conversations you may have with yourself. How does it sound? Try using a few words fromthat sound/conversation just before you read a script. Good luck!

    Back to top

    19 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear toddzilla987's recording

    After some very constructive feedback, here's a different take on Ben Franklin. Let me know what you think.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-1903/script-recording-74573.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Todd,
    You got a great voice for narration and the sound quality is good. I like your pronounciation, very clear. The only suggestion I have is to smooth it out. The read is good, but you sometimes stall, pause too long (between the first naming of Ben Franklin and preached, and between on time and When, for example). It's good to be aware of the punctuation, but you seem stilted. As they teach at Edge, "Are you reading, or speaking to someone?" Think of a buddy and "talk" about this to them when you record, be confident in the read, let it flow, you got the chops!

    Peer Feedback:

    Much, much better. Still could be smoother, more just talking, less reading, but a huge improvement. You are trying a little too hard not to be monotone and it shows I think. Listen to "himself". Sounds like someone pinched you mid word. Also the word after "didn't want" is "to" as in 2, not "ta".

    Relax and just talk to the person across the dinner table.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you both for the wonderful feedback! I'm working on relaxing and being more conversational. I'm a work in progress!

    Peer Feedback:

    Great voice for narration. I felt it was a bit choppy, and too fast in some spots. Also, I felt like it could have been more conversational, instead of narrational. What I mean by that is you would draw the listener in more if you sounded like you were telling your son about your grandfather, or something like that. Bring it down to a conversation and maybe a little more intimate to make it feel like a one-on-one instead of talking to a lot of people. I hope that helps! Nice job!

    Back to top

    0 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Larry Gallardo's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-128/Chaplin.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I like the inflection and character you are using, but it is quite fast at times. I would take it just a tiny bit slower.

    Peer Feedback:

    Larry, this was so much fun to listen to and perfect for those of us interested in accent training to study. The accent is virtually flawless (to my untrained ear, anyway:)). The only words that struck me as perhaps slightly off were "knew", "style", and "apart", but everything else was utterly believable. This music also worked much better for me in evoking the silent screen era than the other selection, although both had the appropriate feel. A great, playful recording!

    Peer Feedback:

    my GOODNESS, thank you, Shana!! Did you listen to the July version or the newer August version?

    I hope to be improving as we go..... More to come!! Click on my name (blue link) and feel free to check out my other stuff.... I'll look for yours, as well! -- Larry

    Peer Feedback:

    The newer one. I listened to and liked the first take too, but thought you significantly refined the accent and brightened up the character and tone in the second one.

    I'll happily be listening for your other stuff and will always appreciate your input on mine!

    Back to top

    0 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Larry Gallardo's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-128/Chaplin.2 - Redo.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I'm not sure how to delete the first take at this script - but it was one of the very first I ever uploaded... I LOVE Chaplin so much that I wanted to do a better job -- so here it is. Yes, I took a bit of liberty at the end... but i LOVE CHAPLIN!!! Hope you enjoy.

    - Larry Gallardo

    Back to top

    3 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Susan's recording

    Today was my first attempt at mixing music using Garage Band. I tried 2 biographies of composers....Debussy and Mozart...and am interested in any advice!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-773/script-recording-11390.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Susan!! Susan!! This was fantastic!! That's what we're talking about :). Very much improved, and a lot more natural surrounding. I should tell you, "Claire de Lune" is one of my all-time favorite classical pieces. Well done!

    Peer Feedback:

    Susan, I enjoyed listening to your voice on this one. Some of your pacing was quite slow but most of the time it worked on this script. Maybe don't slow down so much on musical status quo. My only other advice is to watch out for background noise on the vocal track. Have you tried Audacity's noise reduction plugin? It's very easy to work with. I know you said you were using Garageband but here's a tutorial for Audacity's noise reduction: http://wiki.audacityteam.org/index.php?title=Noise_Removal. Thanks again for your critique!

    Peer Feedback:

    Susan,
    I've just been listening and reading from afar but when I listened to this clip I was toroughly thrilled for you. A truly remarkable improvement. While there is always something to tweak it is completely overshadowed by your amazing improvement.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thank you Richurd. I am grateful and humbled after reading your kind words. I will keep on trying! All of these positive comments give me the encouragement to do so.

    Back to top

    9 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Susan's recording

    This is only my third day of recording scripts, and my first attempt at mixing music. As I am really new at all of this and experimenting with recording and importing music into Garage Band, all advice will be most welcome!

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-773/script-recording-11382.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Susan, your pausing, inflection and emphasis is good...its apparent you have that ability. Continue to work on that to make it even stronger

    Back to top

    34 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear touzet's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-65861/script-recording-73547.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    The pace was good, the pronunciation was spot on. The only thing I would say was that the style could be slightly more conversational - just at the end it sounded a little "read". But over all really impressive. Great sound.

    Peer Feedback:

    If it was me doing this read - so just another opinion - I would have gone for a lighter tone. This sounded a bit funereal to me. Nice voice...one small nit...you dropped the "ed" on changed.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi touzet,
    Nice consistent delivery-- and interesting interpretation! I would never have thought to do a biographical piece like this. It almost sounds like a commercial for... oh I dunno, some nice relaxing botanical fragrance or something-- or, like a guided visualization for a meditation. It's not that it couldn't work in principle, it's just not the tone I would expect for a biography, so I *might* get distracted by it. I agree with Mimi and Sophie above-- nice voice, nice diction, nice pacing.
    Best,
    Pete

    Back to top

    23 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear TxTom's recording

    There's evidently too versions of this script on the site. I used the one what had a double dash or 'm-dash' after "rules." I think the rest is the same as read. Went to youtube for the music bed.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5471/script-recording-55256.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    "two versions"

    Peer Feedback:

    Very nice easy to listen to, the pauses might be a tad long for my ears. I don't know the rules (if there's any) pronouncing foreign names, it sounded Americanized.
    Overall I liked it Mr.Tom
    Regards
    Balazs

    Peer Feedback:

    The americanized pronunciation of Claude DeBussy would be "clod de BYOO see." The general rule...not iron clad...is to try and give them the proper pronunciation as it would be in their home country. ....unless you're a sportscaster...then you're given carte blanche on destroying names.

    Peer Feedback:

    I hear you on the sportscaster's they do a great job at that :))
    Regards
    Balazs

    Back to top

    21 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear TxTom's recording

    A try at a 'one and done' approach. Literally one attempt. I didn't even know who this guy was. There would be video passing, probably some western sounding music in the background...I picture a rather relaxed setting. Hence the laid-back pace and tone.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-5471/script-recording-56746.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Nice read and would go well with what you suggest. You also have a lovely voice for this read. I would add a bit more emphasis to the sentence where he authors 21 books - that's a lot! And again when you describe the impact of the Monkey Wrench book - this is significant but I didn't feel that it stood out like it should. You could also be a bit more playful with the last sentence as clearly the author is having some fun with this. Good luck Kate

    Back to top

    26 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear sseisele's recording

    Chris Coulter is a tough act to follow. And I don't think this part was necessarily intended to be read by a man. But here goes. This week I am attempting to present my real voice. Limited editing.

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-89871/script-recording-71226.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I'll first comment on the recording quality. There is a low ring throughout and it sounds like you are recording in a very open space (a bathroom??). I couldn't get past it on my first couple of listens.

    It sounds like you were just reading the words off the page. You want us to be interested in Eleanor Roosevelt, who was a fascinating woman. Invite us in to get to know her. Get me excited to listen and learn more about her.

    Peer Feedback:

    Overall, you sound slightly echoey, but other than that, I think the subdued sound is ok for this read. It's the relaxed pace of a story teller with no where to be. There are a few points where the pauses need some adjustment. For example, the break between the end of, "...helped with the serving." and the beginning of, "She also horrified..." could be a bit more distinct.

    Peer Feedback:

    Volume level has peaks at -14db. Forum and basically industry standard is -3db. Given that every 3db move doubles the volume, you're over 16x quieter on this recording than you should be. I'm not going to fiddle with all my settings and speakers to bring it up to hear critically to sound quality. But what I CAN hear is that this is WAY too dour in delivery. Who do you envision/perceive as your audience? If you were speaking to me conversationally in this way, I'd be trying to give you some coffee or Red Bull or something. Cheer up, man!

    Peer Feedback:

    This is a tough script. You basically have 4 characters in this tight little paragraph - the narrator (you), Elenore, Ike and the unnamed woman reporter. Several ways to go with it. You could give each of them their own "character" voice ( a falsetto for the women might get too cartoony) or you could simply change the tone and attitude slightly for each - narrator a little flat and matter-or-fact, Elenore a bit bouncy and self assured, Ike a little incredulous, and the reporter a little arrogant.

    For my money, the narrator (you) is a little too laid back and the inflections are a little swoopy. A good person to listen to for biographies like this is Edward Herman.

    This could also use some judicious editing (excessive and loud breath sounds and mouth noise - and tightening up of some of the longer than necessary pauses).

    I'm getting a better idea of what your natural voice sounds like. And now that I have an idea of your home environment, I can hear that you're holding back - not giving it your full voice but being a bit more subdued, which lends to a drop in energy on your read.

    Back to top

    0 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Larry Gallardo's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-128/Helen Keller.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    I liked it. Slight garble. If it is from noise reduction use less of it or none at all if possible. Your voice is good.

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Larry-It's Al. Your reads are always so entertaining and very well acted. I know you have been having some trouble with your audio. I'm sure if it was a hissing or scratchy type sound. But now the vocals sound a little hollow or tunnel type of sound. I don’t know if it’s because like Eric mentioned above form using the ‘noise reduction’ feature in your program or what it is, but it’s definitely there. I know how frustrating it is to try to locate that kind of problem.

    Also the music track sounded like it was 2 or 3 different pieces of music. I thought the first part was well suited for your tone and inflection on this read. Then there seemed to be a changed at “When she visited Japan” this music was also a good match. Then there seemed to be a third track change at “Her name had penetrated” that didn’t seem to work as well as the first two. Was this track all one track or were they three different tracks that you blennded together?

    Denise just listened to the read. She says she felt a connetion with you to the texas history read you did but she doesn’t feel that same connection to this read for some reason.

    What do you think?

    Peer Feedback:

    So.... who are you guys? Penn & Teller?? Al, you do all the talking, is that it?? LOLOL!!! Just teasin'..... Great ear, Al. Yes, it WAS three pieces of music and they each began right as you suggested when they did. Magnificent ear!! It's funny, I struggled with whether or not that third piece DID fit - and almost used something else... I believe it was called "Emotive Child", so I thought it would fit... guess not. Hey, they can't ALL be home runs... lol....

    As to the hollow "tunnel" sounds - what I can tell you is that I've devised this "redneck harlan/hogan BOX" into which I speak when I record. I wasn't using it in my earlier stuff... but have now for a while... I've also been experimenting with a "wind filter" on and off the mic... perhaps that is what you're hearing... I actually thought it was improved sounds over my earlier stuff... is it not?

    And as to Denise not connecting with this piece as well as with the Canary Island piece.... i dunno what to say... Tom said I sounded a bit "sing-songy" in the CI piece... and I'm sure he's right; that is a LONG piece and i wasn't sure I should do it... But, I want to get better at reading narration; frankly I don't think I'm that good... for the reason he cited... I get bogged down and tend to let my "bogging" come out in my read... Not good. anyway, I plan to improve the CI piece and re -post...

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Larry- Guess who? Yep! You're a very funny guy. You, Tom and My wife, Yes she does exist, should write comedies. But I think Denise and I are more like Abbott and Costello. In case you are wondering, Denise is the tall one and I’m short, chubby one. However she is usually the funny one on the team and I’m usually the ‘straight man’. For you "Young Whippersnappers" out there, and I’m sure there are a lot of you out there, Abbott and Costello are know to us "Old Timers" as the funniest comedy team ever. Check out their routines on Youtube, especially “Who’s on First”.

    Yea I think the first music track was a good match for this piece. As for the “hollow/tunnel” sound and your previous uploads, the sound quality of those demos Denise and listened to prior to this were superior to this one.

    Denise is here by the way, she just got in while I was reading your reply. Since I’m in front of the computer, which is typically the reason I’m the one writing the critiques. Denise wants to clarify, this is a good read, but she felt that you were a little emotionally distant in this read compared to your other demos. Denise also says that you are very talented and have a warm, genuine voice that draws the listener in. She thinks your voice is well suited for narrations.

    Keep up the good work.

    Denise and Al, for real!

    Peer Feedback:

    It's GREAT to know you guys!! Thanks for all the encouragement. You guys are a TREAT! And, to back up Al on the Abbott and Costello stuff - I agree!! And, "Who's on First" is definitely my favorite bit they do... That is PURE genius! Many have tried to replicate it, but have all failed. They are TOPS!

    I understand your comments Denise... (Al, if you don't mind, I'll talk to Denise, myself.) LOL... I'm sure it's because as much as I like Helen Keller, (I truly do! I saw, as a child, and thought Patty Duke's portrayal of her in "The Miracle Worker" on TV was a MASTERPIECE!) the Texas thing is near and dear to me....

    Peer Feedback:

    Well I liked it (big surprise - not).

    After reading some of the above (I got confused about half way through) I was curious about the "hollow sound" thing as I have never picked up even a hint of over processing in anything else you had done.

    Well, it is there. I don't think it's your box, or wind filter. It really does sound electronically added. In fact I would have been more likely to believe that this time you didn't use the box as it sounded harder and I thought the lining in your box was giving you a more dead space sound.

    I don't know exactly your normal processing procedure, but it does sound like to much noise removal or noise gate. I doubt you were adding any reverb, so I can't think of what else it could be.

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for checking... think it might be in the EQ.?

    Peer Feedback:

    Hey Larry, I don't mind if you talk to Denise. But don't make a habit of it because if you all start talking to Denise then I'll lose my job security as the 'Middle Man'. LOL! I'm glad we know you too Larry because you have GOOD TASTE in comedy and you're a very funny guy yourself. Keep up the good work!

    Peer Feedback:

    I would be surprised if it was EQ. Doesn't sound "adjusted", sounds processed if that makes any sense. Do you hear it? Maybe it was the box, like I said I've never heard it in anything else you have posted.

    Peer Feedback:

    i hear something at the beginning... but that's about it. is that what you are hearing?

    Peer Feedback:

    Tom, I posted a new one: CHRISTIANITY. got time to hear that and tell me if you still hear it?

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi Larry,
    You need to read the script accurately; you read "the triple handicap" instead of "her triple handicap" and in the last sentence you read "of the rest of mankind" instead of "from the rest of mankind." This is an important technical point which is easily fixed. Accuracy is expected by the client and is a point of professionalism.
    Great voice. Lovely read. Good luck.

    Peer Feedback:

    That's funny... you see all the activity here... you're the first to notice that... THANK YOU for pointing that out. I'll have to watch that more closely. I look forward to hearing your reads; and getting to know you better on Edge. This is an AWESOME playground in which to sharpen your tools!!

    Peer Feedback:

    How did you find me, Liz?.... I noticed you don't have any reads listed yet, of your own....

    Back to top

    26 people have played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear rainydaysandcoffee's recording

    working on sounding natural...what do you think?

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-14302/script-recording-41517.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Hi There,

    I think that you have a nice voice, but I think that you read the copy too fast. I felt a little rushed. Good luck to you!

    Blessings,

    Carol

    Peer Feedback:

    I agree you have a great voice for this, very smooth and clear. Although, I think it sounded a little robotic. Maybe consider adding a little more emotion and conversational tone to the read.

    Just my two cents. Keep it up!

    - Jarman

    Peer Feedback:

    Overall really good...the pace seemed a bit rushed to me. Otherwise I really liked it.

    Peer Feedback:

    Your voice is well-suited for VO judging from what can be heard here. However, your inflection range is so narrow, it comes across unnatural. In fact, the sentence where he graduated from Queens College and ending at Brew & Burger was so much so, it sounds like a computer's voice synthesis program reading back the words. I would be tempted to poke you with something sharp just to see if I could get something more natural out of you. Liven up the inflections some to bring some natural delivery to this. Don't sound quite so mechanical.

    Peer Feedback:

    Your voice is definitely unique and could be a strong asset for you. I would like to see a little more sound deadening in your recording area as the removal of the background noise between sentences seemed too abrupt.

    Peer Feedback:

    thank you all for the feedback! I will work on inflection and slowing down!

    Back to top

    1 person has played this

    Practice Recording:

    Click to hear Ryan Messick's recording

    /sites/default/files/script-recordings/user-587/escher.mp3

    Peer Feedback:

    Your voice is easy to listen to and perfect for this type of VO. I think it was a little fast and some words like "create" were not clear. Really enjoyed your variety on the "math, science..." at the end!!

    Peer Feedback:

    Thanks for the constructive criticism. I hear what you are saying about "create". I think I started going a little too fast there and didn't give some of the words enough time.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Sherlock Holmes

    Script:

    Good evening, and welcome to Masterpiece Theatre. I’m your host for this evening’s production, which returns us to the shadowy and intriguing world of London’s legendary detective, Sherlock Holmes. Holmes, speaking about his diabolically clever adversary, Professor Moriarty, once told his friend and colleague Dr. Watson: “He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson. He is the organizer of half that is evil and of nearly all that is undetected in this great city.”

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Sheryl Crow

    Script:

    Long before she was a roots rock sensation, Sheryl Crow honed her skills by singing backup for Don Henley and Michael Jackson and jamming with other L.A.-based musicians in the Tuesday Night Music Club. But by the time her catchy single "All I Wanna Do" stormed the radio and earned her three Grammys in '94, it was clear she'd make it as a solo singer/songwriter.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Sir Alec Guinness

    Script:

    Sir Alec Guinness was born in London in 1914, began his professional acting career in 1933, and soon established himself as one of the outstanding stage and screen actors of his generation. (SFX: Whistling "Kwai Theme' under) His many films include Oliver Twist, Lawrence of Arabia, The Bridge on the River Kwai (for which he won an Oscar), and the Star Wars Trilogy (SFX: "The Force will be with you, Always")

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Spice Girls

    Script:

    The Spice Girls burst onto the British music scene in 1996, earning both the adoration and derision that accompany nearly instant fame. From the start, they’ve been almost universally derided in the music industry as a synthetic, mass-marketing tool. Unlike the “Fab Four” Beatles, who had spent years songwriting and playing in clubs before they were discovered, the Spice Girls were essentially manufactured, and thus dubbed by critics as the “Pre-fab Five”.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Stevie Nicks -- Vh1 – Behind The Music

    Script:

    In the spring of 1987, Stevie Nicks checked herself into the Betty Ford clinic to end more than a decade of cocaine abuse. After undergoing a 30-day treatment, she was released. Stevie was determined to stay clean and anxious to continue her demanding career. She immediately went into the studio to record Tango in the Night with Fleetwood Mac. It would be their last album together for more than a decade. (music cue – “Seven Wonders”) By early 1988, Stevie Nicks was running out of steam. She was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. After four months on the Tango in the Night tour, her final few shows had to be canceled.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Answer is Blowin’ in the Wind

    Script:

    The Answer is Blowin’ in the Wind of Emails

    My instruments of physics
    were algebra, calculus, and my primordial internet.
    That internet was powered by my hyper-global network of 65,536 computers.
    I wanted to broaden mathematics
    from the blackboard
    to the motherboard.
    I broadened it when I solved
    the largest algebraic equations
    —not on the blackboard—
    but on and across 65,536 computers
    that uniformly encircled a hyper-globe.
    I broaden it again
    when I solved those 65,536 challenging problems
    at the fastest rates
    of arithmetical computations.
    The codes for solving my equations were emailed
    across a record 1,048,576 email wires.
    I emailed 65,536 codes
    into my record 65,536 computers.
    Moving my algebraic problem
    from the blackboard
    to the motherboard was like moving it
    from the practical
    to the precious.
    I visualized my hyper-global network
    of 65,536 computers
    as my mathematics machine
    that I could use to solve partial differential equations
    of calculus.
    But that machine is also my instrument of physics.
    The reason is that my partial differential equations
    are powerful mathematical expressions
    that encoded the motions of air and moisture.
    The physical answer
    is the winds, pressure, and temperatures
    across Earth’s atmosphere.
    My quest included the search for the same answers
    for the motions of water
    in rivers, lakes, and oceans.
    And, finally, for the motion of oil, water, and gas
    inside petroleum reservoirs.

    I visualized my answers in the winds
    blowing via emails
    across a global network of computers
    that encircled the Earth.

    I continued visualizing that blowing wind
    as the motion of electronic messages
    across my primordial internet
    that was outlined, defined, and powered
    by 65,536, or 64 binary thousand, computers.
    Those emails travelled to and from each computer.
    They travelled
    along the sixteen orthogonal directions
    of my hyper-global network of
    1,048,576, or one binary million, email wires.

    As a computer arithmetician,
    I anchored all my computations
    on the laws of physics.
    When a mathematician loses his way
    on his around-the-world quest
    for the deepest understanding of global warming
    the laws of physics serve as signs
    pointing back to his original path.
    The Second Law of Motion,
    in physics,
    became my compass
    with needles that always pointed
    toward the North,
    or the eternal truth .
    The laws of physics are my timeless truths
    even after I have left my storyboard
    for my blackboard and motherboards
    and arrived at my primordial internet.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Big Apple

    Script:

    In the early years of the nineteenth century, refugees from war-torn Europe began arriving in New York.

    Many were remnants of the crumbling French aristocracy, forced to seek refuge abroad from the dreaded guillotine.

    Among these was a Madamoiselle Evelyn Claudine de Saint-Evremond, who arrived in 1803.

    Daughter of a noted courtier, wit, and litterateur, and herself a favorite of Marie Antoinette, Evelyn was by all accounts beautiful, vivacious, and well-educated and soon became a society favorite.

    For reasons never disclosed, however, a planned marriage the following year to John Hamilton, son of the late Alexander Hamilton, was called off at the last minute.

    Soon after, with support from several highly placed admirers, Evelyn established a salon (which apparently was an elegantly furnished bordello) in a substantial house that still stands at 142 Bond Street, then one of the city's most exclusive residential districts.

    Evelyn's establishment quickly became known as the most entertaining and discreet of the city's many bordellos, known for its elegant dinners, high-stakes gambling, and witty conversation.

    When New Yorkers insisted on anglicizing her name to "Eve," Evelyn apparently found the biblical reference highly amusing, and referred to the temptresses in her employ as "my irresistable apples."

    The young men about town soon referred to their amorous adventures as "having a taste of Eve's Apples."

    The rest is etymological history, and the city is now often called "The Big Apple."

    Contributed by Richurd

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Kennedy Children

    Script:

    Forty-three year old Jack Kennedy, two-term senator from Massachusetts, was the youngest President ever elected. His wife, 31-year old Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, a former New York debutante, was the youngest first lady.
    Baby John junior and his three year old sister Caroline, were conspicuously missing when their father was sworn in as the 35th President of the United States on January 21st, 1961. John and Caroline stayed at home with their nanny. Jackie, who grew up with an alcoholic father, was determined to give her kids as normal a childhood as possible – even in the White House.
    Outsiders were warned to keep a proper distance from John junior and Caroline. Jackie made sure that even the secret service were not to pamper these kids. She’d say she didn’t want grown men picking up after her children. She’d tell the secret service “when we’re at the beach, drowning is my responsibility – I’ll take care of them”.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The King's Speech

    Script:

    After the death of King George V and the abdication of King Edward VIII, Bertie who has suffered from a debilitating speech impediment all his life, is suddenly crowned King of England. With his country on the brink of war and in desperate need of a leader, he arranges to see an eccentric speech therapist, Lionel Logue. After a rough start, the two delve into an unorthodox course of treatment and eventually form an unbreakable bond. With the support of Logue, his family, and his government, the King will overcome his stammer and deliver a radio-address that inspires his people and unites them in battle.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Lake Isle of Innisfree

    Script:

    THE LAKE ISLE OF INNISFREE (W.B.YEATS)

    I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
    And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
    Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
    And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

    And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
    Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
    There midnight's all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
    And evening full of the linnet's wings.

    I will arise and go now, for always night and day
    I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
    While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
    I hear it in the deep heart's core.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Three Stooges - A& E Biography

    Script:

    Almost everyone is familiar with the screen characters of Moe, Larry and Curly, and most people know Shemp, Joe Besser and Curly Joe. These six men formed the world’s most loved comedy team, The Three Stooges.This is the other side of the story, the men behind the mayhem. Believe it or not, Moe was not always the leader of The Three Stooges, in fact when they first started, the boys were practically interchangeable. The development of their screen characters is an evolution which took years of refinement.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 4 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    The Yardbirds

    Script:

    Led Zeppelin began as an offshoot of the Yardbirds, the famed British band that launched guitar legends Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck. In 1966, Jimmy Page had taken over as lead guitarist. But the Yardbirds were already falling apart. When the Yardbirds finally imploded, Page was only too keen. He set about rounding up a new band.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Thomas Edison

    Script:

    Shuffling about his laboratory at Menlo Park, New Jersey, a shock of hair over one side of his forehead, sharp blue eyes sparkling, stains and chemical burns on his wrinkled clothing, Thomas Edison never looked like a man whose inventions had revolutionized the world in less than a lifetime. Certainly, he never acted like it. Once, when a visiting dignitary asked him whether he had received many medals and awards, he said, “Oh, yes, Mom’s got a quart of them up at the house.” “Mom” was his wife. Yet every day he demonstrated what a giant among men he was. Great were his contributions to mankind. He patented a record 1,093 inventions in his lifetime.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Thomas Jefferson

    Script:

    One of our greatest Presidents of the past was born at the foot of the Blue Ridge, near Charlottesville, Virginia, in 1743. Thomas Jefferson set the real American standard of living when at only 33, he penned the Declaration of Independence. “I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.” Unlike Washington, he was never in battle. He was a civilian hero. Though he could not free the slaves, he tried to, and succeeded as nearly as possible without destroying the new nation by a civil war. Jefferson shoulders his way to a place with Lincoln and Washington on the strength of moral greatness and manifold genius.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on a recording of this script that one of your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    William Shakespeare

    Script:

    What does Shakespeare say to an era that feels that the times are out of joint? He does not renounce the world or wallow in self pity. He is the poet of this worldliness. Shakespeare distills his experiences into common sense and uncommon wisdom. In the hands of lesser playwrights, nobility often rests on the splendor of the language, but beautiful lines alone may rest no further than the ear. Shakespeare speaks to the soul. He could do anything he wanted with language. The way he talks of a thing conjures up the thing itself. He packed worlds into single syllables. “To be or not to be,” is man’s largest question put in man’s smallest and simplest words.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 4 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    Winston Churchill

    Script:

    The last of the great statesmen, Winston Churchill, a man of multiple genius, will be fondly remembered as one of the most exasperating figures in history. Before moments of British crisis, he was so frequently right that his ability to foresee future events became a burden to his countrymen. His voice was the voice of Britain’s conscience, the court of last appeal in time of danger. Yet to the day of his retirement, he remained impish, mischievous, and remarkably boyish. Even his appearance seemed to change little over the many years. Churchill’s must be considered the most independent spirit of modern times.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 3 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    Back to top
    printer friendly version edit
    “Jack The Ripper”

    Script:

    The denizens of London’s East End; Jack London called them the people of the abyss, “poor miserable human beings clinging to the garbage heap of life.” Against this backdrop would be played one the most provocative unsolved crimes of the 19th century. Investigations continue to this day with growing evidence that while Jack the Ripper’s victims were from England’s lowest class, his deeds directly affected many of the most powerful people in the world.

    Recordings:

    Hear and comment on 2 recordings of this script that your peers recorded.

    How to Reach Us

    Call us 888-321-3343
    Email us training@edgestudio.com

    Click for Edge location information...

    Meet Your Coaches

    Edge Alumni Work Everyday

    Get free educational
    voice over newsletters!

    Get free, educational voice over newsletters

    Where should we send them?