Review Excerpts

September 17th, 2010

BUGBOT press REVIEWS post

CODE orig march 3 2011

Check out some of the wonderful reviews we’ve been receiving.

book vovaWe’ve been called a “viable addition to the working actor’s bookshelf…” to being lauded as a “must own!” We’re proud of the fantastic reviews that have been pouring in for VOVA.

Great review for the Warm-Up mp3/CD by Megham Weimer

from the On Route to the Booth VO blog Click here to read

by Meghan Weimer January 13th, 2011

Do You Have a Routine Before Voice Over Sessions?
I’ve been thinking a lot about routines as they relate to voice over: you know, that methodology that gets you into a good physical and mental state, prepared to deliver the best read of your life.

Surprisingly–if you know me–it’s not something I’ve given much thought until recently. I’ve been thinking about routines because I had a couple private voice over coaching sessions that just weren’t optimal. One so-so session is acceptable, but two? Let’s figure out what the issue is!

Even as I was doing it, I have been keenly aware of rushing from point A (work) to point B (VO locale) so that I would get there in time. Granted, my coach provides a chunk of time to settle in and prepare scripts, but I’ve never intentionally given myself time to prepare both my mind and body for an hour of rigorous practice.

Recently, I discovered Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic, a new voice over book by professional VO’s Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt. The husband and wife team have also produced The Warm-Up, available in CD or mp3 format. I haven’t yet read the book, but I scooped the mp3 and so far so good.

For less than five bucks, Lowenthal and Platt lead you in complete full-body, facial, vocal, and breathing exercises, as well as tongue twisters. What I love most about The Warm-Up is its four-minute “Condensed Complete Warm-Up”–perfect for those days when I’m rushing (but trying not to) from work to practice.

Mike Rhode’s Review of Voice OVer Voice Actor the Book, Washington City Paper

Washington City Paper, Review of Voice Over Voice Actor, the book:

Posted by Mike Rhode on Dec. 7, 2010 at 9:45 am

Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic by Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt (Bug Bot Press, $19.95) may be a good gift for a teen hooked on animation or cosplay. The married authors have provided voices for animation, video games, and commercials and give what appears to be good information on how the processes and industry work. They also get anecdotes from others in the business, including Wil Wheaton, who notes, “I’m never going to be the guy who can do interesting character voices, but I am the guy who can create interesting characters using only his voice.” If facial warm-ups, demos, and “Just gimme a couple more, wild” make you curious, consider checking out this book. I have no interest at all in being a voice actor, but I’m finding the book charming. It’s also got cute comic strip illustrations by Jerzy Drozd and an extensive website.

PlaybackSTL , Sarah Boslaugh
Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt/ Voice Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic
Bug Bot. 2009. c.216p. illus. index. ISBN 978-0-9840740-0-6. pap. $19.95. 256 pages. Emerald Book Company, 2010. $19.95 (paperback)
“Even if you have no aspirations towards a career in voice-over, there’s a lot you can learn from this book.”
“…What I like best about this book is the informal yet business-like tone taken by the authors: they don’t offer shortcuts or “secrets to success” but point the way down a path which can lead to a rewarding career. And they’re not afraid to have some fun in the process: anecdotes, cartoons and fun facts are salted throughout the text, along with sidebars from other industry professionals which offer advice, war stories and other information about working in the voice-over business.
If you think you know something about voice acting (and even more so if you think it’s easier or somehow a lesser skill in comparison to conventional acting) I invite you to listen to the demo reels of Yuri (YuriLowenthal.com) and Tara (TaraPlatt.com). Pretty amazing, huh? Not only do these demo reels demonstrate the versatility of these two actors, they also provide examples of how to assemble clips to showcase your talents briefly and effectively.
You can learn more about Voice-Over Voice Actor from the book’s web site:
(VoiceOverVoiceActor.com/) which also offers bonus materials like exercises to improve your skills.”

Read the entire review at PlaybackSTL

Library Journal Review, Barry X. Miller
Lowenthal, Yuri & Tara Platt. Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic. Bug Bot. 2009. c.216p. illus. index. ISBN 978-0-9840740-0-6. pap. $19.95.
“…new guide, with a specific focus for different audiences, address the practical needs and concerns of actors seeking voice-over work. First-time authors (and husband and wife) Lowenthal and Platt have extensive professional voice-over credits and offer a thorough nuts-and-bolts guide to all facets of the profession. Introductory chapters delineate the diverse voice-over spectrum, provide useful information to identify and strengthen vocal quality, and list necessary preaudition considerations. Middle chapters examine the hellacious realm of auditioning, technical aspects of the voice-over process, and the business side of entering the field (e.g., the demo, securing an agent, self-promotion and marketing, and ongoing practice). Written in a breezy, conversational style, the text includes numerous sidebars featuring anecdotes from working professionals, cheesy cartoons, inane inspirational quotes, and technical factoids.
VERDICT … their guide is a viable addition to the working actor’s bookshelf…”

Technorati Book Review: Voice-Over Voice Actor
Author: Jon Herrera July 26, 2010
Voice-Over Voice Actor is written by Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt, who have been doing voice-over work for 12 years and have steady gigs doing cartoons and video games. They also take any other work for which their voices are suitable. The best info in Voice-Over Voice Actor is that any kind of voice can finds its way into the profession, as there are now so many products and roles needing to be filled.
With chapters like Finding Your Voice, The Audition Itself, What To Do To Get Started, The Demo Yuri and Tara, the book manages to cover all the basics. It includes a number of exercises and tips, and a nice glossary of terms common to the world of voice-over acting. There are also some sample copies for practicing. There are cute little cartoons at the end of each chapter, and the overall tone of the book is a nice mixture of informal and informative.
The only thing missing from Voice-Over Voice Actor was a CD in the back of the book with vocal exercises and examples of the kind of work that the authors do. Voice-Over Voice Actor’s companion website is colorful and has a few additional voice exercises.

GoodReads Review
By Jason Milligan
Voice-Over Voice Actor reads easily and quickly and that is good. Its conversational tone keeps you interested and learning without being didactic or dogmatic. This book makes the material fun, yet crams copious amounts of information into a mere 230 pages. A reader can finish this book within a few hours and then spend many years following its advice and building a career instead of squandering months trying to wade through verbose text and redundancy.
Yuri and Tara intend this book for aspiring Voice Actors, but I think it is useful to anyone who intends to work in animation, video games, or other areas of entertainment requiring voice work. I only occasionally do voice work (primarily when necessary or when doing puppetry), but I do often direct or work directly with voice actors. After reading this book, I feel like I better understand the industry and can work more efficiently with voice actors. I also find the advice for building a career as a VO is germane to many areas of entertainment outside of voice acting.
If you want to be a voice actor or work with voice actors, it would be irresponsible not to read this book.

SomeAudioGuy Blogspot
Book Review – Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind The Mic
There’s a new book available for people interested in Voice Over, and I’m liking it a lot!
Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind The Mic is hitting bookshelves now, and I was fortunate to get an early copy to review.
Written by Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt, two voice actors at the top of their careers, VOVA is an excellent resource for those beginning their VO journey, while including enough helpful resources to also aid more experienced performers.
VOVA chronicles Tara & Yuri’s entrance into the craft, while at the same time providing practical advice for not only the art of voice over, but the business of VO as well.
The book is a fairly comprehensive introduction including sections on styles of VO, auditioning, home recording, demo preparation, and advice for scoring an agent/manager. They of course are not promising you a career in VO by reading their book, but you get a really in depth look at the industry as it stands TODAY.
That’s one of my favorite things about VOVA. There is a lot of very good literature out there for VO, but this is easily one of the savviest books written on the subject in this modern era of digital recording. It’s one of the most up to date accounts of what it’s like working in this field right now. Yuri & Tara are both working talent at the top of their game (each with an incredible list of credits), and every chapter is augmented by other working professionals including directors, engineers, producers, agents, and other talent.
The book has a really fun voice, with information cleverly and intelligently delivered to readers of all skill levels. Voice-Over Voice Actor is a really easy book to recommend to those interested in trying the craft, and those already working in it.
You can buy the book at their website VoiceOverVoiceActor.com, and people who purchase will also get access to online resources including practice copy, warm ups, and additional content not found in the current edition. I’m already quite impressed with Yuri & Tara’s commitment to keeping the information available on VO as current as possible.
You can also follow them on Twitter as VOVoiceActor.

Feathered Quills: Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic
By: Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt Publisher: Bug Bot Press
Publication Date: January 2010 ISBN: 978-0-9840740-0-6
Reviewed by: Pamela Victor Review Date: February 17, 2010
Though brisk sales hopefully will profit Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt, I get the impression that they have written Voice-Over Voice Actor because of their love of voice acting, not to mention their all-around niceness and super-heroic good will towards all. The authors don’t hold back secrets of the field, which would be understandable given the competitiveness of the acting world. On the contrary, Lowenthal and Platt write with abundant generosity, welcoming those new to voice-over acting with open arms. If you are contemplating or starting out in voice-over work, Voice-Over Voice Actor is a must-own. I mean it, folks. And I’m not just saying that because I like talking in funny voices.
In fact, I had hardly dipped my toes into the roiling waters of this book before it became crystal clear that Voice-Over Voice Actor is an essential, invaluable treasure that the voice actor will return to again and again. This book provides a plethora of vital guidelines to make any newbie look more like a seasoned professional. A mere sampling of the topics include: understanding your voice’s range, exercising your voice and maintaining vocal and over-all health, identifying your vocal signature, preparing for the audition, making a demo reel, and what makes Christopher Walken and William Shatner so entertaining to listen to. As the authors suggest, “Hmmm. Christopher Walken as muse…William Shatner as muse. Ponder that for a while.”
In addition to the basic topics, Lowenthal and Platt offer bountiful tips of the trade, such as how an audio engineer wants you to relate to the mic, why it’s a good sign if the producers ignore you, how a teeming walk-in closet can work for you, and why a Granny Smith apple might be your best friend. These are gifts to the voice actors that will dramatically increase chances for success.
Are you familiar with any of these terms: “Popper Stopper” “walla bed,” “loop group,” “flaps,” and the all-important “three beats”? Within a working context as well as in the glossary, the authors provide definitions to the terminology a voice actor needs to know, so when someone says to you, “Give me a slate,” you won’t look at them like a blank slate. And this sentence will make perfect sense: “If you can master the skills required for dubbing, you’ll look really good in a pick-up or ADR session for a pre-lay animation project.”
This treasure trove of knowledge is presented in a casual, chatty and humorous style that puts the reader at ease, open and ready to soak it all up. From the Roy Lichtenstein-inspired book cover to the eye-catching comics and the retro-styled shout outs peppered throughout the book, Voice-Over Voice Actor sparkles with energy, youthful enthusiasm and wit. We feel like we could hang with Yuri and Tara, and maybe even geek out with Yuri over sci-fi comics if that’s your bent. Because, after all, “Yuri’s been a prince of Persia, a man of steel, and a boy who smacks his watch and turns into ten different aliens; while Tara has repelled inter-dimensional invaders with her Lasso of Truth, fought ninjas, and saved the universe by dreaming the future.” Pretty cool work if you can get it, don’t you think?
Quill says: For the fledgling voice-over actor, this book is a must-own. It’s just that simple.
For more information on Voice-Over Voice Actor: What It’s Like Behind the Mic, please visit the book’s website at: www.VoiceOverVoiceActor.com