| Dave Courvoisier November 2008
You're receiving my very first newsletter….
"BIG DEAL!"…you say, "…another something I don't have time to read!"
Gotcha. I understand. You can unsubscribe below if you want,
but I hope you'll hang on to read this nascent effort,
and maybe even offer some feedback, good or bad.
newsletter is meant for voice actors, but you'll find plenty here, too,
for the enterpreneur, the businessperson, the thinker, the editor, the
producer, and the pundit.
||Voicing in Vegas
Vegas is a great entertainment market. Some will tell you not much VO goes on here. They'd be wrong.
OK, it may not be NY or LA, but there are many production houses here,
and they all do their fair share of commercial production, on-camera
videos, presentations, industrial productions, audiobooks, and much
A couple rise above the rest in my estimation:
Dog & Pony Studios
Sun Media Productions
OakDale Post Audio
'you really want a great resource for ANYTHING that has to do with
production in Vegas? Call or write the Nevada Film Office. They've
compiled an awesome guide to all things related to video, film, audio,
and studios in las Vegas and Reno.
Call 'em toll-free at 877-638-3456 or e-mail at: [email protected]
||Links – Referrals
Planning to hire a voice-actor? Please read the suggestions tastefully, thoughtfully, and diplomatically posted by Cathy Siciliano HERE.
Fantastic online e-zine for voice-actors and people in the industry offered by Julie Williams. Click HERE to sign-up.
If it has anything to do with voice-acting, you'll find it on VoiceOverXtra. This site is worth a visit everyday. HERE.
looking for a voice, or want to establish yourself as part of one of
the fastest-growing communities of vocie actors on the planet, you
should visit VoiceOverUniverse.
site now accepting international (esp. English-speaking) voice talent,
and (of course) looking for voice-seekers too. Bodalgo. (the link is for the English-translated version of their website)
Site for hi-quality free web-ready photos of all kinds. PicApp.
actor and coach Deb Munro is organizing a Cruise for '09 jut for
voice-actors. Yes, Cruise as in Caribbean in a big boat. She's still
working on details, but if you visit her site, you'll find info and an e-mail address to write her for more info.
||Hi, I'm Dave…. (and yes COURVOISIER is my real last name)
by Dave C
|I do a lot of stuff with kids in my TV job…
Since 1982 I've been doing a weekly TV feature called "Wednesday's Child".
idea is to bring to light the plight of disadvantaged kids. So each
week, I profile one child who is looking for a foster home, or an
adoptive home, or who might need a Big Brother or Big Sister. Some of
the first kids I ever featured are now adults, and yes that makes me
feel old, but there's nothing like the joy I get when I'm approached by
someone who tells me: "…I was a Wednesday's Child in 19XX, when you
took me on a hot air balloon ride…" (or something similar). I'm also
on the board of directors for Boys Town (remember Father Flanagan?).
years ago, I won an Regional TV News Emmy for writing, producing, and
appearing in a half-hour report relating the events of our annual
Wednesday's Child Christmas Party. We try to throw one heckuva party
for the county's foster kids…something they won't forget. We have
hundreds of bikes donated, and provide lots of fun activities and
entertainment for the kids.
I'm a firm believer that service is
one of the best things any human being can do to get the focus off
"self" and all the "woe-is-me" anxiety that is so characteristic of our
modern culture. I've chosen disadvantaged children as my focus. I
don't expect anything back, but the DOING of it has become its own
reward many times over.
||Marketing – Networking
probably no chance Joe Cipriano would even know I was on the planet
without VOICE 2008. Never mind that fact that Joe's a very astute,
likeable, and approachable guy — it means nothing if you don't get
proximity at some point. That's what networking events like VOICE are
all about — face time. Thanks, Joe for being so gracious with your
The best tip I ever got from a working voice actor when I first started was to join and frequently visit the Voice Over Bulletin Board. I started
that day, and never regretted it. The liaisons and friendships I've
made there have enabled me to go further than I ever thought I could.
The community is a little zany & fun-loving, but the information
they share, the give 'n' take on issues, the expertise that resides in
the people on board is beyond price. Lurk if you want, but sign-up is
free, and the crowd is welcoming. Be a part!
John Florian has masterfully put together one of the most useful voice acting websites on the planet — for the entire spectrum of voice over ability. At VoiceOverExtra.com
you'll find classifieds, coaches, helpful articles, links, sage advice,
and great networking. Whether you're a voice-seeker or a voice talent,
you'll benefit from visiting.
Finally, the hottest networking tool to hit the voice over industry in 2008 is Rick Party's VoiceOverUniverse
ning website. It has become the de facto standard for networking,
seeing, and being seen. The forums, the groups, the sheer level of
expertise among the residents there is awe-inspiring. Join now, and
become part of the universe!
||Forget the Vegas Stereotypes… Here's the reality!
I Live here…
OOther people living in Las Vegas getting this newsletter will understand the following: We do NOT all live in Casinos. Yes,
the city has Boy Scouts, Libraries, City Council meetings, lots of
churches, bake sales, a United Way Organization, and trees. If you
live here, you try to avoid "The Strip". But, when you want to,
there's an unbelievable choice of live entertainment. Yes, it's hot
3-4 months of the year, but unlike the 3-4 months of Winter where you
may live, you don't have to shovel heat here. The beaches of SoCal are
a 4 hour drive one way, the Grand Canyon is a 4 hour drive the other
way. Lake Mead still has water in it…although water conservation
measures are in force.
Not all of us think or act like Senator Harry Reid, Senate Majority
Leader…who is also Mormon. There are lots of Mormons here. Vegas
has 2-million souls, and only 2% of the population was actually born
and raised here. We don't like the idea of everyone sending their
nuclear waste to our back yard. We say Nuh-VAD-uh (middle syllable as
in "sad" or "glad")…not Nuh-Vah-duh (as in open your mouth and say
"aaahhh") Since everyone is from somewhere else, no one can agree on
sports allegiances, except maybe UNLV Runnin' Rebels when they're hot
(and lately they are).I say all this, 'cause Las Vegas is no worse, and no better than anywhere else. To me, it's home, but it's not perfect. All three of my daughters were born here, so I'm fond of the place. Las Vegas just happens to be……uh…conspicuous. Most
everyone comes here sooner or later. When you do, give me a call at
702-610-6288 and I'll buy lunch, then we'll go visit OJ down at the
local jail-houseI'm sure he'll be lonely by then.Need some info about Vegas? Click on the following links to get a start:
Las Vegas Convention & Visitors AuthorityVegas.com
||Equipment – Production Techniques
Excelling in Voice acting will require a good facility with the computer/technical side of the business.
Software — Hardware — Connection.
well you handle those 3 components will win you high marks from your
clients, and studios/producers/directors with whom you'll be working
Your Digital Audio Workstation (DAW), be it MAC or PC will do the
lion's share of your workload. But you'll need to get comfortable with
a sound editing program. Audacity is free, and is full-featured. Honestly, it may be enough for many people. The other end of the spectrum is Pro-Tools by Digidesign. This
program is recognized in professional studios as the de facto standard,
but for the lone voice actor in his/her private studio, it's over-kill,
and has a long learning curve. Most Voice Actors opt for something in the middle, like Adobe Audition, Sony Sound Forge Audio Studio, GoldWave, or CuBaseLE.
||Coaching – Workshops
Wynn's "Wynn" Resort is about the only gaming company to actually turn
a profit in the 3rd quarter…but mostly 'cause it's Macau property is
doing so well. They claim $50-mill in the 3rd quarter. It's also about
the only place hiring these days. Wynn's sister tower "Encore" is set
to open a couple of days before Christmas, and they're hiring thousands.
Best Kept Las Vegas Travel Secret:
is based in Las Vegas, and specializes in flights to and from mid-size
airports. Fresno, CA; Eugene, Oregon; Peoria, IL; Toledo, OH;
Wilmington, NC; etc. They fly to and from those places on Thursday and
Sunday only. They fly regular-size jets, they're prompt, friendly, and
VERY inexpensive. They DO charge a la carte…so a little extra to
pick your seat, a little more for baggage claim, and the like. Did I
mention they're inexpensive? I flew one-way to Belleville, IL for
<$100. Check 'em out. They might be flying to a place near you.
There ARE smokeless places to stay and play in Vegas:
to see a great article on this. The new Westin is smoke-free, so is
the Renaissance, The Platinum, the Marriott…lots. Probably THE
swankiest resort OFF the strip is the Red Rock Resort and Spa. It's up
on the West side of the Valley and any cabbie could get you there.
They're now bragging about all the casino space they've set aside in a
non-smoking environment. Also ANY stand-alone bar that is also a
grill…or that serves food, is mandated by state law NOT to allow
smoking in the same room. Some restaurants have shut down their food
operation because of it. Others have just partioned-off the food from
the drinking/gambling sections.
Try the MonoRail:
The Las Vegas Monorail
is a really cool way to see the sights on an elevated track that
travels the length of the strip…but not downtown, and not to the
airport. You can get on it almost anywhere, and go either direction.
We've been hit by the economic downturn too:
the resorts are eager to entice visitors. Ask for special pricing on
rooms, ask for perks, expect comps, and then tell 'em the guy across
the street is offering what you want for free. DO NOT expect to get
any show tickets at a reduced price…and MAN, they're getting
expensive. The top shows are easily around $200/seat.