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Observations, musings and rubbish from the mind of an IVO (International Voice Over)

March 21, 2019 1:25 pm

We want it read with style and grace

voice over artist recording studio UK

The phrase from the title of this blog, ladies and gentlemen, is one which often falls from the lips of many an agency executive, copywriter, writer-writer, client and any number of other people who might gather in a recording studio to direct, brief and/or produce a commercial or narrative, the script for which I’m usually given about two seconds before standing in front of the mike.


Sometimes, the script will actually be written in a manner which befits such an ask.

It might start out setting a lovely scene, using well chosen words and phrases to build an historical picture of a country or nation rising out of nothing to become one of the world’s best, biggest, richest, insert-appropriate-descriptive here.


Or a company which has achieved, built, expanded, become huge, won awards…


You get the picture.


Sometimes I might actually get to begin the narrative, commercial, whatever by voicing in a style which befits the script, as instructed, “with style and grace”.


But mostly, the whole thing usually turns out to be another “buy one, get one free” read, voiced in a style which seems to indicate that it’s a race to reach the end of the text, ensuring it all fits inside of 30 seconds, or two or three minutes.




Because I’m just the voice-over, and voice-overs know nothing about how a script should be read – only the agency/writer/client knows.


Having said that, occasionally, when the writer has scripted a quality script, it’s then often the client who asks for it to be shouted from the rooftops so that any rival client or opposition is completely drowned out in, basically “SELL!”.


Every now and then, however, there comes along an agency/writer person – and even a client – who have an inkling that the voice-over just might know a little bit about how a script should be voiced “with style and grace”.


Take a look at the “Kellogg’s Cornflakes” animated TV ad listed at the “Retail” section of the website for a classic example of both writer and client leaving me to get on with it – so much so, they didn’t even attend the session!


Those are the days I live for once I’ve walked through the studio doors…


Next: “The dancing voice-over monkey in a box”…