Earlier this year, we kicked off another exciting edition of ACX University with a look at Kristina Rienzi’s Among Us and a chance to audition to narrate and produce her alien conspiracy thriller. Over 65 auditions later, we’re thrilled to announce that Kristina has chosen Lewis Arlt to voice her audiobook! Let’s hear from Kristina on casting Lewis to produce Among Us:
The narrator selection process wasn’t an easy one. Every voice had a unique strength that would have added value to Among Us, but I needed to find the perfect fit. I weighed everything, and after much contemplation, I chose the performer who moved me the most, who captured my story and characters perfectly, who gave me chills with his voice. Lewis’ performance delivered what every listener wants when they choose a thriller—a visceral response. I’m certain beyond any doubt that Lewis will not only do Among Us justice, but will bring my fast-paced, dark, and twisted story to life like no one else. I cannot wait to hear the final product!
ACX Producer Lewis Arlt
For his part, Lewis was first drawn to the chance to voice this thrilling piece of fiction after focusing primarily on non-fiction on ACX:
[T]he notion of a thriller appealed to me from the standpoint of character delineation and plot progression in ways that non-fiction doesn’t usually offer. Additionally, Kristina’s writing drew me in. It’s a unique blend of stylistic choices – traditional spooky tension and flat-out terror, combined with wry sardonic contemporary observations, and a variety of pace, all of which gives the narrator lots to work with, and the listener to enjoy.
Listen to Lewis’ audition for Among Us below, and watch this space for updates on the production.
Check out the full slate of ACX University 2018 episodes here.
Last month, ACX and Audible Studios teamed up to kick off 2015 with an open casting call to find the voices for two Roxanne Conrad titles: Copper Moon and Exile, Texas. We received over 1,000 auditions, and it was no easy task for Audible Studios’ producers to select just two actors.
But two great actors did stand above the rest, and we’ll wait no longer to congratulate Kelley Hazen and Jamieson K Price for winning the coveted narration contracts! Let’s meet our winners.
Kelley is an Audible Approved Producer who works out of Los Angeles and saw audiobook narration as a natural extension of her acting career. Author Roxanne Conrad raved:
Kelley just leaped out of my headphones with this story, and absolutely everything worked for me … the pacing, her voice, the great voice work that differentiated the characters so completely. I just loved the work.
We spoke with Kelly to get to know the voice behind the upcoming Copper Moon audiobook.
ACX: What compelled you to audition for Copper Moon?
Kelley Hazen: I was intrigued with the Copper Moon storyline immediately; I love music and the idea of possession and spirits. After I read the material provided for the audition I wanted to know more, I wanted to know where the story would go. If it is a story I want to pursue as a reader, I know I will enjoy narrating it.
From the business side, earning/winning an ACX/Audible Studios Open Casting Call title was the next ‘goal’ in my business plan. To work directly with Audible Studios is a great opportunity and I’m really excited about it.
ACX: What inspired your winning audition?
KH: Roxanne Conrad’s smart, funny writing inspired my read. She has a definite rhythm, a cadence to her writing. I knew I needed to embody that in my read. My impression from the audition material was that the winning narrator would be the one who most accurately captured Roxanne’s very specific ‘sound’. There is humor drawn directly from the popular culture, jokes that could only be delivered one way. I practiced those to make sure I had the correct rhythm. I marked up the script I read from quite a bit – like a piece of music. And I wasn’t afraid while I was recording to go back and re-record to get something just right.
ACX: What advice do you have for those new to voice acting or audiobook narration?
KH:The most important elements in your audio chain are your ears. Hone your listening skills. It’s important to ‘hear’ the author – not just word-to-word, but as an entity, as a total expression. What is the overall milieu they seek to create through their story as it comes to life through your sound? Listen to the quality of your voice. It should be a sound the listener will want to cozy up to for ten or more hours. Listen to the sound of your studio to make sure your recordings are exemplary and your background is silent and worth a listener’s time and money. And most of all, listen for your own authenticity and organic connection to the story.
Listen to Kelley’s winning audition below.
Jamieson K Price
Jamieson describes himself as a “Los Angeles-based actor who has worked around the country on stage, screen, and microphone.” According to Audible Studios Production Manger Kat Lambrix,
Jamieson has a great voice for storytelling, and he gave both of the characters in the audition script the perfect voices and intonations. His pace is just right, and his voice draws you in to the story, wanting to hear more.
Jamieson joined us to share the story behind his voice acting career.
ACX: How did you get into voice acting?
Jamieson K Price: I was performing in a play right after I finished grad school, and my leading lady was dubbing anime. She brought me into the recording studio and the director felt I had promise. That progressed to working with other directors and in other studios, which led to voice-acting in video games. At the same time I was starting a family and reading aloud to my children, which was wonderful practice. The voice acting provided a flexibility that fit in well with being a parent so I have really concentrated my acting there for the last ten years or so.
ACX: So you’ve done voice over work, but not audiobooks. What made you audition for Exile, Texas?
JKP: I have been interested in doing audiobooks for several years now, but haven’t really focused on it. I love reading, and the challenge of bringing words to life aloud is much of what we do as actors. The tone, the feel of the prose in my mouth, the life I could see in the characters, that was what really compelled me to give it a try.
ACX: How did you prepare to deliver this performance?
JKP: I read the copy and let it sink in, thought about the characters, then did a couple of reads to hear how it sounded. I let it rest for a few days, but continued to turn it over in my mind. Then I came back and recorded several more reads using different intentions and characteristics for the two voices to see what sounded most true. On my final read I tried to just relax, not push anything, and let the story tell itself, kind of get out of my own way. That read sounded honest and had the ring of truth, so I submitted it.
ACX: What advice do you have for those starting out in the VO/Audiobook business?
JKP: Take acting classes! It’s essential to being able to quickly access your emotions and expressing truth. We are all such unique individuals but all too often who we are becomes inhibited as we get older. Acting classes allow you to exercise your imagination, explore all the myriad parts of your personality and awaken truths you never knew you had.
Thanks, Jamieson. Check out his winning audition below.
Audible Studios and ACX are kicking off 2015 in style by teaming up for another open casting call! This time, we’ve got two great titles from author Roxanne Conrad, and two narration contracts from Audible Studios worth up to $2,700 each!
Male actors are invited to audition for Exile, Texas, the story of Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Fox, a missing girl, and a 15 year old murder case the Texas town can’t seem to forget.
On tap for female actors is Copper Moon. Don’t miss your chance to voice the adventures of small town music teacher Abby, as she meets a handsome stranger, becomes possessed by his dead mother, and begins to learn some unsettling secrets.
The casting opens Tuesday, January 13 at noon ET, and runs through Thursday January 29 at noon ET. Visit ACX.com, and create a free account to upload an audition. The winning narrator will read in Audible’s studio’s in Newark, NJ, or self-record from home. No editing or post-production is required.
Audible Studios and ACX are kicking off our latest casting call. This time, we’re teaming up with Voice 2014, one of the LA area’s top voiceover industry conventions, taking place in Anahiem, CA August 27 – 30 2014.
This casting call gives actors attending Voice 2014 the chance to audition for Audible Studios’ Grammy-winning team of producers, as well as one of the audiobook industry’s top talents, Scott Brick. Male actors can audition for the opportunity to voice Build for Change by Alan Trefler. Female actors can audition for Pivot Points by Julia Tang Peters. Both titles are non-fiction, and require an instructional read appropriate for newbies and veterans alike.
Both titles pay a per finished hour rate commensurate with the actor’s experience.Build for Changewill having an estimated running time of 6 hours, and the contract is valued at roughly $1,200. Pivot Pointswill have a running time of about 10 hours, and will reward the female winner a contract worth roughly $1800. The contract is for narration only; all editing and post production will be handled by Audible Studios.
Actor and casting call judge Scott Brick
To audition, visit ACX.com and create a free account. Auditions are open to attendees of Voice 2014 from Friday August 8th at 9 AM ET – Monday, August 25th at 11:59 PM ET. The selected actors will be announced during Scott Brick’s audiobook panel at Voice 2014 and right here on the blog.