The Common Skill Set of On-Camera and VO Acting

Hey, there!

Something occurred to me a while back. It seems pretty simple, but it seems to escape a lot of artists.

What’s the concept?

Acting is acting is acting. VO, on-camera, stage, whatever.

Simple, right? Apparently not.

See, I’m always surprised how resistant some actors are to exploring VO as an acting form. They have no problem checking out theater, film, TV or even commercials, but VO? That’s a foreign object to them – a confusing, fuzzy no-thank you.

I’d like to spend some time convincing VO actors – you – that they should consider on-camera acting, and on-camera actors to consider VO.


Because when we train for one, we’re secretly training for the other. Every cold reading skill we learn, every storytelling technique we acquire, every emotional moment we create can be sold to producers both on-camera and on-mic.

Developing a character for on-camera, placing that character in the script’s situation, and playing that character in the scene, is no different from how we do those very same actions on-mic. The only difference is the collector device.

I call it “mutual muscles.” (I actually created a class for it: Mutual Muscles – it’s available to you here)

And our marketing strategies and tactics hold true for both areas as well: just as surely as we create a portfolio of headshots to show the different facets of our on-camera brand, we develop a portfolio of demos to show the different buyers of VO the disctinct flavors of our on-mic brand.

The more you realize how much all of our acting modes are alike, the more you ease into all of them, and share expertise across all of them.

And…the more money you make.

I hope that got your attention.


10 Responses to 6 Steps to a Perfect VO Demo

  1. Kelli August 18, 2011 at 2:58 am #

    I feel really good about my demo. It is a quick and fun process, even for someone like me who gets very self concious. :)

  2. David Britz September 5, 2011 at 11:25 pm #

    The demos are great. Superb quality. Why go anywhere else?

  3. David Britz October 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm #

    Can’t wait to record my Narration VO Demo!! :))

  4. Mike Brang December 31, 2013 at 9:44 am #

    Having a well-produced demo is one of the most important things in the VO business. I had a number of demos made from other producers in the past and they all had one thing in common — that manufactured, cookie cutter sound!
    What sets David apart from the rest, besides his affordable price and tremendously fast turn around time, is that all of the clips you record with him sound unique. Each spot sounds like an actual commercial you recorded for a job.
    My agent loved the quality and even asked who produced it to refer his other talent there!

    Thanks again, David for producing such a great, high quality demo for me. You made the process relaxing and enjoyable. I urge anyone reading this unsolicited reply to listen to David’s student demos to hear the difference for yourself. Anyone would be lucky to work with him

  5. Kristy Liles February 9, 2017 at 7:04 pm #

    I can not thank you enough. I worked so hard on 15 page IVR project, one day I cryed, look for answers, pull my hear (not really) but I was about until another VO send me this great tool. Thanks!

  6. Frank June 11, 2017 at 9:51 pm #


    When v123 indicates the audition is for a student/ nonprofit are we to assume it is for $0. If so, why does the audition ask for an amount to be entered?

  7. shirley jordan June 12, 2017 at 5:58 pm #

    I did get this scam through Voice 123. In our discourse, they offered me the gig and they gave me the name of a legit local place to record and the same runaround with the money. I didn’t send anything, but instead, I called the studio to make sure the booking was for the day we set up, and lo and behold, the people there had no idea what I was talking about. I then tried to call back my “contact person” who was setting this up and there was a fax machine beep on the other end. I immediately contacted Voice 123 and told them what had happened. You know what they say…if it sounds togaed to be true, it probably is. Thanks for the reminder!

  8. shirley jordan June 12, 2017 at 5:59 pm #

    …too good…not togaed.
    The one time spell check didn’t work!

  9. Bernard Prame July 1, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

    extremely helpful demo. Thank you!

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