Paul Strikwerda says: Shut up and Listen

If you are not subscribed to Paul Strikwerda’s blog, you need to be. He is an incredible writer and voice talent with lots of great thought provoking insights for – well, pretty much everyone. His latest blog post will get you thinking about how you interact with others and with the copy in front of you.

We did multiples in class on Wednesday and one section from Paul’s blog discusses what happens to us in this situation.

When we started recording, I was so focused on getting my own lines right, that I often didn’t hear what the others were saying. I was glued to the script, waiting for my turn, just like the woman in the ski lodge who couldn’t wait to bring to conversation back to herself.

Because I was too busy with my own lines, I was completely out of the moment. A million things were racing through my head: What would the director think? Which words should I emphasize? Where in the sentence should I breathe? Do I need to fill up the parking meter? How come my mouth is so dry? Why is the woman next to me wearing so much perfume?

I had yet to learn this lesson:

Acting is reacting.

It requires the studied recreation of a moment, bringing it to life as if it is completely new and spontaneous. It’s as much about active listening as about a deliberate delivery of lines.

One of the ways that voiceover is changing is that many times we end up doing our sessions in a complete vacuum, even the multi-voice spots – so it is even more important to listen to what our subconscious is saying. You can (should) still be having a conversation while reading the script.

Read the entire column here >>>


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