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Voice over career panelists (l-r): Tor Mhyren, Joan Baker, Rodd Houston, Joe Cipriano, Valerie Smaldone, Cedering Fox, Bill Ratner and interviewer Alan Kalter (Jeff Fasano photo)
THAT'S VOICEOVER! Was 'Over The Top'
In Education, Fun & Career Inspiration
Note: The audio recording of the entire THAT'S VOICEOVER! stage event, and a PDF of the program, is available for $34.95. For details and to order, please visit:
By John Florian
Everyone felt like a voice over celebrity at THAT'S VOICEOVER!, the classy voice over career stage event and reception at The Times Center in New York City on September 22.
For nearly three exciting hours, voice over celebrities and insiders were on stage sharing experiences and advice, of course.
And it all rubbed off on attendees who rubbed shoulders filling the theatre and later networking - with hors d'oeuvres and wine - in the marble lobby.
Co-hosts Alan Kalter (The Late Show with David Letterman) and Joan Baker (Secrets of VoiceOver Success) - yes, that's them pictured - guided us through the evening. (More photos are below.)
And yours truly grinned and applauded from the Center's glassed production booth, from where VoiceOverXtra provided the live broadcast of the event online, worldwide - and recorded every word. 
BTW: The entire stage event audio recording and program are now available here for just $34.95: 
A major portion of the event was producer Push Creative's Audition Spotlight, for which scores of voice talents auditioned before judges earlier in the day. Then on stage during the event, six finalists read that script again.
Voice actor Rachel Logan (shown here, auditioning) took top honors, winning the voicing of an actual TV spot; agency representation by Vanessa Gilbert, president of TGMD Talent; and a Neumann TLM 102 microphone.
Two panels anchored the night in Q&As with co-host Alan Kalter: The Business of Voiceover and Voiceover as Craft and Career.
Dr. Joyce Simons (pictured) spoke on behalf of the Alzheimer's Association, which benefits from the event's proceeds. 
The evening was dedicated to the memory of voice over legend Don LaFontaine.
And major sponsors were AFTRA, Neumann, and Back Stage magazine.
The stage show was followed by a reception and book signing of Joan Baker's Secrets of VoiceOver Success - a compilation of success stories by the industry's pros.
Comments from the theatre and online attendees came quickly, including:
  • "Last night's event in NYC was over the top! And for a great cause, too. Very, very informative with great guest speakers and really classy!" - Lenny Delgado
  • "WOW! What a night! I was totally engaged from the moment I walked into the venue. You did a phenomenal job and it was truly inspiring .... I met some great people and had a wonderful time." - Diriki Mack
  • "Fantastic event! Entertaining, fun, touching and educational. I could not get enough, and didn't want it to end." - Dan Ichimoto
  • "Kudos for That's Voiceover. You assembled winners in the field, and it was great to hear everyone's personal perspective on the business - how to break in and how to sustain. You also shed light on Alzheimer's and the effects of the disease. I'm indebted to Push Creative for inspiring me like never before." - Desi K. Robinson
  • "Awesome production .... incredible. I learned lots and had a GREAT time. I had a really profound experience being one of the 30 to audition." - Holly Raye
  • (Online) "Even better than expected!" - Melanie Haynes
  • (Online) "I appreciated the opportunity to listen and take notes .... I learned more about the voice over industry and my direction." - Karen Woodbury
  • (Online) "I really appreciate you making it possible for me to participate in this learning vicariously. Thanks for doing this." - Doug de Nance
  • "Best show you've done, ever! Dr. Simon, who's suffering from Alzheimer's, was one of the most moving speakers I've heard. An inspiration, as were all of your wonderful guests." - Larry Culley
  • "Rudy, this was an A+ event ... truly spectacular. And Joan was sensational as ever. I laughed, I cried, my heart was overflowing with love. Beautifully done." - Maria Santiago
  • "Rudy (pictured with Joan), what you and your wife did last night was fantastic .... The peek behind the curtain was such an eye opener! The work you are doing to help find a cure for Alzheimer's is great." - Dan Rice
  • "Lots of fun .... It was exciting! I learned a lot and laughed a lot. Loved the speakers, too." - Kathy Barbee
  • "You have literally opened an entire new world for those of us seeking to create careers in this exciting field. The two of you have obviously made the industry a lot more exciting than it ever has been. I'm proud to be part of it." - Bobbie Tanaka
  • "Push Creative put together the most dynamic event I've seen in a long, long time. I flew in from China to be there. I won't forget this show." - Robert Pang
  • "Push Creative is a monster team. Bravo on a great show." - Vance Toran
  • "This was the best event I've ever witnessed! Thank you each and everyone on the panels. And to Dr. Simons, who brought me to tears, yet inspired me. Words can't describe how you all ROCKED midtown with That's Voiceover!" - Sharon Faison
It's not too late to enjoy THAT'S VOICEOVER! The audio recording and program are available here for just $34.95:
Photographer Jeff Fasano captured the action, including ...
Voice talents Joe Cipriano and Valerie Smaldone
Joan Baker and voice talent Rodd Houston
Co-host and interviewer Alan Kalter
Voice talent Bill Ratner
Rudy Gaskins, Joan Baker, Rachel Logan, Vanessa Gilbert and Alan Kalter
VoiceOverXtra recording the audio - webinar style - in production booth
VoiceOverXtra's John Florian (with directorial delusions)
Rebecca Bridges, VoiceOverXtra's webinar production director (the real worker)
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Comments (5)
Barry Owens
10/25/2010 at 12:29 PM
Rudy, I just want to tell you that what you and your wife, Joan Baker have created in That’s Voiceover was miraculous! I’m still moved and motivated by the experience. I’ll tell you why.

First, the peak behind the veil was such an eye opener! It is something I have always wanted to do but just never had a clue how to start. I’m now studying with a great voiceover coach with an eye towards recording my demo reel in January/February (I flew in for the event so I live in a different state).

Second, the work you are doing to help find a cure for Alzheimer's is great! I too am losing someone very close to me to this horrible disease and was mighty grateful for that portion of the event, along with the speaker who brought me to tears.

Thirdly you and Joan are so special in this industry. My admiration for what you both are doing and bringing the public is truly remarkable. I’ve now even learned about VoiceOverXtra and love what they’re doing, too.

Rudy and Joan and the rest of the guests on That’s Voiceover - thank you for changing my life!

Barry Owens
Shirley S.
10/9/2010 at 5:20 PM
That's Voiceover was just magnificent, and I really loved the panels and the work. I loved especially the second panel and the focus on the audition. I also loved how the sponsors were highlighted.

That's Voiceover really made a special effort to connect the dots for us. Joan, you were radiant, sparkly gorgeous and powerful!! Wow, you looked amazing. Alan Kalter, I'm now in love with - he was brilliant. Thank you to all the incredible speakers, Dr. Joyce Simons for Alzheimer’s and the honoring of Don LaFontaine. Congratulations to Joan and Rudy for creating an amazing event!
Vance Toran
10/7/2010 at 6:17 PM
A magical night full of passion! So glad to have been there.
Evelyn P.Malina
10/6/2010 at 1:15 PM
Just wanted to let you know how utterly fabulous your event was, and it was for such a great cause!

It was a pleasure to see you again, Joan. I met you when G. Keith Alexander and Don LaFontaine were on your panel through the Learning Annex, Make Millions With Your Voice. I'm hoping my voiceover career will get jumpstarted from the connections I made that night at That's Voiceover.

I also made a donation to the Alzheimer's cause at your event that evening. I, too, am touched by this disease and credit you for all your fine work and wish you and Rudy continued success in everything you both do.
Emily Coffin
10/5/2010 at 4:27 PM
Dear Joan and Rudy,

I want to thank you for an incredible, informative and truly transformative evening at That's Voiceover! at The Times Center in midtown.
From start to finish it was a beautiful, well-polished shining tribute to both the voice-over industry - with a deeply touching tribute to the late Don LaFontaine - and also to the heartfelt speech of Dr. Joyce Simons and her personal struggle with Alzheimer's and her important work for the Alzheimer's Association.

The event was cast with the Best of the Best in the voice over industry, and I left the theater more inspired than ever to pursue this Voiceover Career! I was throughly engaged and felt enpowered the moment I sat down in my seat.

Continued success in everything that you both do, and I can't wait for the next one!
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