Speed Reading for Voiceovers


I was among one of the lucky ones to read the copy fast enough and won this water bottle!


Here are some awesome tips the amazing Peter Dickerson (co-founder of Gravy for the Brain) dove into during his presentation last Saturday night at yet again another great event hosted by Edge Studio.

Speed Reading Tips

  • WARM UP: We stumble a lot when we’re not warmed up. Figure out your technique to warm up your throat muscles and your articulation muscles. (I didn’t do this before I hopped in the booth and guess what–I tripped on my articulation–Take Two!)


  • CONCENTRATE: Like I learned in acting school, leave your shit at the door, enter the rehearsal space ready to give it your all. Same goes when you’re in the booth. The mic picks up everything.


  • FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THE COPY: I know, it’s a cold read, how do you do that!? Well, I personally don’t get pulled into the waiting room chit-chat. I read the copy over and over again, mouthing the words or even saying them under my breath. Sure, I look a bit serious and strange, but I’m there to work…I’ll see ya’ll later at happy hour!


  • PUNCTUATION: Sure, we’re not copywriters, and some get insulted or even downright territorial. But, we’re the ones who have to bring that black and white copy off the page and to life. So add commas, periods, ellipsis, exclamation points (sorry Craig Geller -my talented Copywriter friend who calls me out for using too many exclamation points!!) hey, whatever it takes >>>which leads to my next point.


  • MARK UP YOUR SCRIPT: Use whatever hieroglyphics you need to, to communicate what you need during the read. I add breath marks, pauses, beat changes, down endings, up endings, happy faces…whatever it takes to pull my emotions, voice, tempo, articulation out at the right time!


  • SCAN AHEAD: This is a practice and a craft in and of itself. Something, after this presentation I’m going to work more on. It’s the art of reading and staying connected to what and why you’re saying something while your peripheral vision and brain are reading what’s coming up next. When you nail this, you can add the right sentiment to your delivery and take the script where it needs to go. Sometimes even in one take!

Voiceover techniques, like anything else, is a lifelong study. It takes a lot of failure and rejection before you book your first gig or even before you book your 100th gig. Just keep on keeping on!


Listen to my take: My Car Spot Record – Take 2!


Casting Directors: Who are they to you as a VO Artist?

man holding clapper board
Photo by Martin Lopez on Pexels.com
I just read a Huffington Post Article: What Does A Casting Director Do?  by Kate McClanaghan.

So many times people ask me about how to break into the VO industry. Although it’s not as easy as most people think, I always offer the 4 fundamental basics in how to get started.

…After I’ve confirmed the person is truly interested in my craft and they’re not in it because: ‘People always tell me I have a great voice, where do I sign up for that quick paycheck?’

My advice is:

  1. Learn to Read Out Loud.
  2. Take some classes (from a Casting Director!)
  3. Get a demo together – without spending a fortune.
  4. Get your voice out there.


Kate McClanaghan’s article talks about how vocieovers are cast and who’s who in the industry…something so important for the talent to understand if you don’t have an agent yet or want to do your own marketing.

Find a Casting Director who coaches VO talent or teaches group classes. THEY are the ones who know what work is out there, the newest trends and how to best market yourself. Many times they teach classes and bring an agent in at the end of the class to give you the opportunity to read…and maybe even land an agent.

I do coach potential VO talent because I love to teach and share my knowledge, and know of other great VO teachers that are also VO talent…but I do strongly encourage taking a couple classes from Casting Directors. As a VO artist, I know what I know, I have techniques I’ve learned over the years that work for ME…and many of those I’ve learned from fantastic Casting Directors.

Go Read. Be Heard. And be Great!

In a Women’s Voiceover World!


in a world

Women in Voiceovers!

Attached is a great article by Carrie Faverty a casting director I’ve taken classes with. She talks about the industry (like many others) that is set in a man’s world. I know and love many men that are fantastic voiceover artists and are perfect for the roles they’ve booked. However, we need a shift to change in the advertising world. A shift that fits today’s day and age.

Women today are not housewives, we’re CEO’s of our entire household.

Hello Advertisers! Statistics prove that these Household CEO’s make many of the important decisions …We ARE your target audience for many of your products that need to be presented in a confident, trusting and friendly way. We are powerful and educated buyers, we are Global COO’s (shout out to Sheryl Sandberg), and Household CEO’s (shout out to my mom!) …making sooo many financial decisions: researching automobiles to buy, banks to use, and yes, even purchasing tickets to sporting events (and merchandise), and determining which TV show or movie we will see on our next date night.

Doesn’t it seem about time to rewrite this story from “In a World” to “In an EEOP World!”?

I can’t wait to see “In a World” this September and needless to say I can’t wait to book my first In a World Trailer!


Sharing is Caring!

A few of my VO friends and I are getting together for some booth time, to talk shop, give some constructive criticism and share some tips.

It’s scheduled the night of May 9th in Midtown-Manhattan. If you’ve been doing VO for at least 2 years and are interested in joining us hit me up for details.

No worries newbies and out-of-towners! I’ll be sure to post any new tips I’ve learned or think to share myself!

And I know a lot of you are newbies and are interested in getting started in VO’s – no worries. We’ll hold a session for you too. So message me directly if you want that info when we have the date and syllabus set!

Nice Feedback and New Agents

So my current Agent who I was freelancing with is not sending me out on auditions anymore. I’m at a point where I’m getting 1-2 jobs/week on my own. So I haven’t been hounding him to send me out OR to sign me.

I went to lunch with an old improv friend today and he mentioned how much he loves his agent. He then offered to connect me if I was interested. I of course agreed.

I left lunch and headed to an audition I was called in for…through Voices123 (weird it was in a production house right!?) and by the time I read the part of “Woman” I had this email forward from my friend’s agent waiting for me:

As they say, you know within the first minute and I do.
Please have her get in touch…she’s got a great sound.

It’s always so nice to get nice feedback. 

To hear my reel go to: www.emilylepore.com

(Constructive criticism welcome, constructive compliments too!)


There’s a word



Every once in a while there’s a word I have trouble pronouncing during a gig. It’s always just one word that even the audio engineer starts I make fun of me for. The producer or client will ask, “what part of the mid-west are you from?” Wha!? I suppose I should be flattered since I’m a Jersey Girl!

Today it wasn’t just any word, it was the PRoDuCt NaME! Yikes!
It must have been listed about 8x throughout the copy too.

So what do you do!?
I have three steps that worked for me in this situation:

  • It’s not Shakespeare-Or is it? I went iambic pentameter on these sentences and forced the stress where it was supposed to be. I over-enunciated it to be sure it was correct. It felt like I was stressing the second syllable too much at the time but in the end, it was perfect. Plus it’s always easier to overact something and then pull it back than to force something out of you.
  • Take a hike!  I stepped away from the booth. Took my dog for a walk (he likes when I get stuck 😉  distanced myself from the copy for a half hour letting the sound of the word and the feel on my tongue melt away.
  • Use your words. I formed sentences of my own with “the word” so I was using it in a more organic, native way to me. This allowed my brain to ease off a bit. After a few sentences, the word became my own and part of my vocabulary.

GOOD luck…err, good LUCK!?


Makeshift studio away from home.

I was in London visiting a dear friend and an audition came in. So I hopped in her closet where the clothes help stop the reflection of sound, grabbed a glass of water to stop the mouth clicks, plugged in my travel USB microphone and Bam-booked the job!

African Dialect

I always find it fun and easy to pick up other people’s dialects or cadences you’d think with an ear for that another language would be easy to learn. Nope. I’m horrible at learning new words…that are foreign sounds to me. I’m a bit embarrassed as a voiceover artist not being able to pick up on simple conversational pleasantries when in another country!

I’m in Kenya now. I started learning Samburu because I’m volunteering for a month working with a nonprofit that helps educate children in the Samburu tribe. These kids put me to shame. In Grade 3 they’re already fluent in Samburu, Swahili and English!

It’s super fun to learn new words. And saying them is SOO fun. But ten minutes later after 20 different thoughts to distract me I’m already asking, “How do you say ____ again?” As soon as they say it I’m like “OH YEAH!” But for the life of me, when I need that word I can’t think of it!

Is language that hard for us to learn (as our first language) as a child?

Are there any tips you fellow VO artists can share that makes learning new words stick? I really feel like I should be able to learn a new language FASTER rather than NOT AT ALL with my ear and love for words!


If you’re interested in my (Purely English) blog about my volunteer work in Kenya please visit and follow me here: http://igotbitbyalion.tumblr.com/

You never know where you’re next job will come from

My lifestyle is pretty simple. Comfort first. I’m a jeans and t-shirt kinda gal who enjoys getting dressed up and putting on makeup for a Saturday night date. But those other six days a week you’ll find me in my Chucky T’s and zip-up hoody when I’m out running errands err, ok even when I’m out to lunch! It’s more likely you’ll find me outside in the middle of a snowball fight than jetting out to brunch with my beautiful friends. So when I accepted the offer to record “The Soho Guide” (a downloadable app) I knew I’d have to fall back on some of my acting skills. I channeled my best Carrie Bradshaw to explain to how “ you’ll discover New York City’s hottest shops, restaurants and galleries…”

This spot aired on at TaxiTV commercial. And I’m not going to lie that I was a bit confused when I got a call from a Fisher-Price client saying they loved my work and wanted me to work on their next commercial. Sex appeal and kids’ products don’t usually mix – right? But if the client likes you, figure out what it is they like about you once you have the job and then continue to nail exactly what they’re looking for during the record.

You never know where you’re next job will come from. What I do know is if you do what you love the work will find you.