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Posted on 20th august June 2018 by Nekquai Adeniyi


Imagine you were getting paid on a regular basis just for talking… how much would you expect to get after a days work? £100? £200?

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voice artists are usually paid per job

Kinda like freelancers -  and can earn anything from over £15 to hundreds of pounds for a single hour of work? Crazy but true! So if you were to become a part time voice artist working for £16 an hour, 5 hours a day, 4 days a week, you’d have earned £1280 by the end of the month and £15,360 over the year… not too shabby for a starting salary which only has you working 20 hours a week.

Voice acting is seen as a specialist profession

t’s typical to think of cartoons and family friendly movies, but in reality there are a multitude of genres to explore, from animated shorts to feature length films, gaming to documentaries, advertisements, audiobooks and TV shows. Actors are used in a range of different contexts within the commercial sector and companies hire different talent depending on the nature of the production. Last year alone the UK is forecast to have spent £21.8 billion in commercial advertising!

So what does a voice artist actually do?

They’re basically people who’re paid to talk – they might lend their voices to a movie character or be cast as a voice over for an advertisement. Whatever the genre, the job often involves them being alone in a small room with a microphone, so although you may know an actor’s voice like the back of your hand, you might not have a clue what the hell they even look like. Their role is to be the man behind the camera, if you will. The invisible talent.

It actually requires a lot of work

It'ss much like being a normal actor. In fact, it could be argued that being a voice actor is harder. You need to be versatile, flexible, committed and own your presence. As the audience can’t see your face it means that you have to be even more expressive with your tone so that the intent behind the message comes through really clearly. This is especially important in cases where voices are being used to portray characters in shows or movies. The audience really has to have an understanding of personality and since the actor can’t be seen, that has to be evident in the way that they talk.

You'll know some famous voiceover artists

Quite a few of the highest earning voice actors alive today are so rich because of the programmes they’re associated with. The more successful the production, the bigger the bucks! Julie Kavner, who voices Marge Simpson, is one of those amazing talents whose voice could probably be recognised in under 5 seconds. Kavner was paid $30,000 per episode and her current net worth is $55 million! By contrast, her co-worker, Yeardley Smith (aka Lisa Simpson) earns $300,000 per episode of The Simpsons and is the 9th wealthiest actor in the world!

But even she’s not top dog. An American dude by the name of Trey Parker, co-creator of South Park and the voice behind characters such as Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Randy Marsh and Mr Mackey, is worth a whopping $350 million in US dollars… making him the highest paid voice actor world over.

I don’t know about you, but looking at those figures is enough to make my eyes explode. If I had the balls and the talent, I would seriously consider this job… alas, my skills don’t lie in this area. Plus, I’m committed to a life of writing (insert creepy eye emoji).

So, ever considered being a voice actor?

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Written by Nekquai Adeniyi

Instagram: @_theageingyouth

Facebook: Niah Nekquai