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If You Can't Or Won't Listen As
A Voice Talent, You Won't Make It
April 21, 2016

By Tom Dheere
Voice Actor and Coach

Recently my manager sent a casting notice to their talent roster and asked us to help spread the word.

It was a "seeking non-actors for a TV commercial” casting notice, so I posted it in a few places online.

Among the specs were:
  • You must have two children between the ages of 8-15, and
  • The entire family must be available to be interviewed over the weekend.
I got a number of responses, but only one of them qualified! Why? Either their children weren’t in the required age range, they weren’t available this weekend, or both.

I checked what I posted about this job, and as far as I can tell, the specs were pretty clear.


So, why did people ask to be considered anyway - even through the casting notice clearly disqualified them?

I think it’s for one of two reasons:
  • They didn’t read the entire casting notice.
  • They read it but submitted anyway, hoping an exception would be made for them.
To be fair, a suburban family of four has probably never read a casting notice in their life and doesn’t realize that (at least in my 20+ years of experience) exceptions are almost never made. Most casting notices that are posted by representation tend to be crafted very carefully, especially ones for major products/services that will air on television.


I have helped cast numerous on-camera, theater, and voice over projects over the years, and you would be astounded by the number of people who ignore the casting notice specs and submit anyway, thinking that even though we’re not looking for their type for this particular project, we’ll consider them anyway.

They are wasting everybody’s time by doing that.

This is why the majority of aspiring actors and voice talents fail: they don’t listen. If you can’t or won’t take direction regarding the casting notice, why would you listen to anyone when you’re in rehearsal, on set, or in the booth?

Good voice actors are good listeners ALL of the time, not just when it’s convenient or important to them.

If you can’t or won’t listen as a voice talent, you won’t make it.
Over nearly two decades, Tom Dheere has narrated thousands of projects for clients in over a dozen countries and voiced more than 40 audiobooks. He is also a voice over business consultant, coach at Edge Studio, was the marketing consultant for the Voice Over Virtual online conference, and is also writer/producer of the new sci-fi action comic book Agent 1.22.

Agent 1.22

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