The Voice Committee strives to expand professional opportunities for Toronto’s world class voice performers. As industry business models are constantly evolving in reaction to new production technology and distribution models, it has never been more important to communicate the ACTRA Advantage to new and experienced engagers alike. Check out some of our recent initiatives below
This is your union and we are your Voice Committee. Got ideas for projects we should be working on? We want to hear them!
ACTRA Toronto Releases Report on Vocal Stress in Video Game Voiceover Survey
August 4, 2022, Toronto — In June of 2021, 260 ACTRA members responded to a survey regarding vocal health and acting in video games.
The survey is the first quantified survey regarding vocal health in the industry. The key findings are the voice work in video games can be taxing on performer’s voices and potentially impact their vocal health.
The results of the survey showed the following:
74.32% of the actors polled said that very often or almost always their sessions included loud/projected, aggressive, or vocally extreme…
Not so long ago, a Toronto member returned from an audio book workshop in California, only to discover that there were no opportunities available in Canada. Zero. All the work was US based and it seemed like Canadian performers were shut out. Gaining a foothold in the audio book market was identified by the ACTRA Toronto Voice Committee as an important priority and significant progress has already been made.
Canadian publishers have signed up for a pilot project to produce 100 titles, nearly a third of which have already been completed. Great progress from a standing start!
Check out our Audiobooks Page to learn more about our progress in this important and fast developing market.
There was a time when how-to videos, corporate narrations and e-learning projects were bread and butter jobs for many ACTRA Toronto Performers. Now that broadcast quality audio production gear is cheap, there a lot of small players competing for a piece of an increasingly crowded market. Our challenge is to cut through the noise, make it as simple as possible to work with ACTRA Toronto and communicate clearly all of the advantages that come from working with experienced professional performers. Click on the postcard above and check out our simplified on line forms
The Voice Committee strongly supports efforts to simplify the contract and make it easier for engagers to make the choice to go union. Council backed our initiative to publish an “ALL-IN Radio Rates” postcard that makes it clear to first time union producers how simple it can be to engage ACTRA members.
To make contracting of radio work as easy as possible, we have created a fillable PDF form version of the ACTRA TORONTO ALL-INCLUSIVE RADIO CONTRACT AND LIMITED LETTER OF ADHERENCE, which automatically calculates fees for our most popular radio commercials. Simply complete the contract on the day of production, click the icon beside the corresponding commercial type and negotiated rate on page 1 and the form does the rest!
Online Voice Talent Database
voice.actraonline.ca is ACTRA’s online searchable database of Professional Voice Performers. ACTRA Toronto Voice Performers can create a profile and upload resumes, demos and other information.
In all of our outreach, we are working hard to make this database the preferred casting tool for engagers. You can help. Make sure you create and maintain your profile and upload your demos to the database.
Vocal Health for Extreme Voice Performance
Vocal Health for Extreme Voice Performance is a best practices guide that provides advice for performers, producers, agents, and casting directors who are involved in voice over projects that include vocal extremes that lead to vocal stress. Following best practices will help producers and performers complete vocally stressful sessions, minimizing risks and reducing the costs associated with vocal injuries. Health for Extreme Voice Performance provides advice for performers, producers, agents, and casting directors who are involved in voice over projects that include vocal extremes that lead to vocal stress. Following best practices will help producers and performers complete vocally stressful sessions, minimizing risks and reducing the costs associated with vocal injuries..
NEW! ACTRA Toronto Webinar – Vocal Combat Technique: Learn to Prepare, Protect & Preserve Your Voice with D’Arcy Smith and Katelyn Reid (December 11, 2022)
Actors are asked to go to vocal extremes on a regular basis. View the Vocal Combat Technique: Learn to Prepare, Protect & Preserve Your Voice webinar to learn secrets on how to prepare for these sessions, what you can do during them, and how best to recover, so you can return to the booth or set in the best vocal shape possible.
NOTE; This link will expire on December 31, 2022 at 11:59 p.m ET
ACTRA Toronto Webinar – Public Lending Right Program for Audiobook Performers (March 16th, 2022)
Tune in to the Public Lending Right Program for Audiobook Performers webinar, recorded March 16th, 2022. This session features special guest Peter Schneider, Manager, Public Lending Right Program/Executive Secretary, Public Lending Right Commission, in discussion with ACTRA Toronto member Braden Right. Peter explains how the Public Lending Right program works, and how audiobook performers are eligible for payments.
ACTRA Toronto Webinar – Canadian Audiobook Publishers Panel (June 15th, 2021)
Listen here to the Canadian Audiobook Publishers Panel recorded on June 15th, 2021. Ann Jansen from Penguin Random House Canada, David Caron from ECW Press, and Matt Williams from House of Anansi Press discuss the tremendous growth of the industry in Canada and why they choose to work with professional, unionized performers to narrate audiobooks. The discussion is moderated by ACTRA member Braden Wright, head of the ACTRA Toronto Voice Committee Audiobook Subcommittee.
ACTRA Toronto Webinar: All About Animation – ACTRA Voice Performer Panel (September 29th, 2020)
Check out All About Animation – ACTRA Voice Performer Panel, recorded on September 29th 8th, 2020, and hear ACTRA Toronto members Deven Mack, Ana Sani, Stephany Seki and Nicole Stamp as they speak with Voice Committee Chair Cory Doran about their experience in the industry and why they love this engaging and challenging work.
ACTRA Toronto Webinar: The Canadian Audiobook Industry & Narration Work for ACTRA Members (Jun 23rd, 2020)
In The Canadian Audiobook Industry & Narration Work for ACTRA Members, recorded on Jun 23rd, 2020, ACTRA Toronto members Grace Lynn Kung, Miles Meili and Ana Sani joined host Braden Wright to discuss what attracts them to audiobook work, the challenges in this type of specialized performance and the joy of audiobook narration. Attendees also heard about member experiences becoming self-signatory to the Audio Code.
PRH Ahab Webinar for ACTRA Toronto – Reference Transcript (April 28, 2020)
On April 28th, ACTRA Toronto members and industry partners were invited to a free webinar on Ahab – Penguin Random House Audio’s online performer database for audiobook narrators. The publisher hosted this webinar specifically for ACTRA Toronto audiobook narrators and talent agents, thanks to outreach work done by the Audiobook Subcommittee of the ACTRA Toronto Voice Committee.
Read the Penguin Random House Ahab Webinar Transcript
ACTRA Toronto Webinar: Working in Audiobooks (April 20th, 2020)
“This is the perfect session for experienced voice performers who are looking to break into audiobook narration.”
In Working in Audiobooks, recorded on April 20th, 2020, Toronto Member and seasoned audiobook narrator Braden Wright talks about the difference between audiobook narration and other types of voice work, shares a list of 10 useful resources, discusses research and preparation for the role and gives tips on self-directing when working in a home studio.
ACTRA Toronto Webinar: How to Set up a Home Studio (April 15th, 2020)
In How to Set Up a Home Studio, recorded on April 15th, 2020, Toronto Member Tony Daniels walks you through the basics of creating a recording studio in your own home. From the different type of microphones available to the software needed to record and connect, Tony explains what is required to set up your home studio.
How to Set Up a Home Studio — Slides
Primer & FAQ: Source Connect
Working from home? ACTRA Toronto Voice Committee member Paul Popovich created this handy Source Connect Primer & FAQ to help you set up and use the industry standard Source Connect software.
Voice Committee Co-Chairs
A weekly voice-over job I had for 4 years went non-union due to “budget cuts” and this really lit a fire in my belly for change …that and a nudge from a friend in the industry who suggested I had experience and skills that would be of value on the voice committee. I am keen to learn and collaborate with my fellow actors and work towards securing more union work for us all. Voice-over is my passion and livelihood. I am so grateful to the voice-actors who have blazed the trail to bring us to where we are today in the industry, IPA and NCA agreements. I’m excited to be a part of the next wave of advocacy.
By creating new initiatives and offering voice workshops and information sessions, our members get the tools they need to stay competitive and meet the demands of the ever-changing digital world.
If you haven’t been to a voice meeting, come on out and make your voice heard!