Voice Overs Of The World: A Tale Of Two Voice Overs
Sometimes these blog entries just write themselves for me. This week, not one, but TWO different new commercial spots debuted that used great literary works as their inspiration! So buckle up, and journey into the world of literary voice overs with me!
First up, we have a new commercial from Nike, promoting its devotion to soccer (or football, for you international readers.) Does the voice over’s copy sound familiar? That’s because the entire thing is a quote from Edmond Rostand’s celebrated play, “Cyrano de Bergerac.” This famed nobleman, duelist, poet, and musician is not afraid of a brawl, and one of his famous soliloquies is recreated here, to dramatic effect.
I think this is both a striking commercial and also a fun opportunity for a voice actor. In the world of commercial voice overs, most actors tend to work mostly in very advertising-based copy, usually touting a product’s features, the latest sale or something like that. I don’t think it’s the norm for a voice actor to go into a recording session for a major shoe company and get to recite a dramatic work of Shakespearean proportions. Pretty cool, huh?
Next up, we have a commercial from Audi for their luxury A8 car, and it’s based on the classic children’s book “Goodnight Moon” by Margaret Wise Brown. Having read this book to my own children about a million times by now, I instantly recognized the writing stye as being a loose take-off on the original book.
Whereas the Nike commercial featured a gruff, manly sounding voice (to represent a gruff, manly-sounding piece of writing), the Audi commercial presents us with a female voice that has a smooth, silky feel to it. Not only does the talent use that soft, nighttime story reading approach, but her voice invokes images of both a mom and the sensuality of the kind of luxury represented in this commercial. It’s a pretty terrific voice over performance, don’t you think?
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