1996. After almost 15 years of being an on-air TV newscaster with a moustache, I shaved it off.
The phones in the newsroom started ringing. Someone on the assignment desk decided to start keeping a tally of those who were upset that I shaved, vs. those who were happy about it.
A couple of days later, I asked where the vote stood. She said it was 50/50….a wash.
Now here it is December 1st, and the Movember men’s health awareness facial-hair promotion is over. My three other broadcast MoBros in the newsroom promise to show up at work today clean-shaven.
I’m conflicted. I suffered through at least 3 weeks of moustache-in-training…and now that it actually LOOKS like a moustache, I’m going to shave it off?
Already the emails and social media comments are coming in, and like 20 years ago, the returns are inconclusive.
What VO lesson is there to be learned in all this?
Like moustaches, voices fall to the capricious nature of subjective judgement. Yesterday’s blog about the research in gender preference for explainer videos means nothing to the client who prefers one voice over another.
This axiom is the very basis of the belief in our community that we are not so much in competition with each other for auditions as we are in competition with the client’s pre-conceived notion of what the voice they’re seeking SHOULD sound like.
So that audition that just went out to 125 other VO pros? Ignore those people. YOUR voice may be just the timbre, timing, and temperament the client is looking for… and only YOU have that voice. Go for it!
Even more… they can’t see if you have a moustache or not!