How to Get Into Voice Acting for Anime
Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you’ve heard the term “anime,” and since you’re here reading this article and trying to figure out how to get into voice acting for anime, you more than likely really enjoy this type of show.
And what’s not to like? The premise of anime is to artfully present creative characters that are involved in fantastic adventures and are displayed in bright colors. You aren’t alone in your enjoyment of anime. Around the world, it has a fan base of millions of people.
The increase in popularity of anime has been attributed to several different factors, including the fact that there is something for everyone. No matter which genre you enjoy, whether action and adventure, comedy, romance, horror, or mystery and suspense, there is an anime series for you to watch.
If you’re looking to take your love from watching anime to the next level, we’re here to help you learn how to get into voice acting for anime.
How to Get Into Voice Acting for Anime
Anime may be a product of Japan, but with so many people around the world enjoying the shows, many shows get dubbed so that they can appeal to audiences of a specific country. If you’re wondering how to become an anime voice actor, here are 15 tips you’ll need to consider:
1. Be a Fan of Anime
This may seem like a no-brainer, but being a voice actor for anime means knowing the different types that are out there and understanding what the fans want and expect. If you’re a fan yourself, you’ll be able to bring your love of the genre to the screen and provide other viewers with exactly what they’re looking for.
2. Develop Your Voice
Just because people tell you you have a great voice and that you should be a voice actor, that doesn’t mean you can wake up one day and find success in this type of career. Like anything in life, you have to be willing to develop your voice and learn the ins and out of the trade.
When it comes to developing your voice, there are several options you can consider, including going to an acting school.
However, if going to school isn’t feasible, then it’s a good idea to do as much research as you can. Read books, watch YouTube videos, become a member of a local theater group or even join a choir.
When asking how to get into voice acting for anime, any and all of these can help you develop your voice.
3. Consider Working with a Vocal Coach
When figuring out how to get started in voice acting for anime, in addition to going to school and/or doing research, you might also consider working with a vocal coach.
Your voice is an instrument, and to be able to use it to its full capability, you need someone who can teach you how to use your voice properly. You need to know more than how to talk or read lines.
You need to know how and when to breathe and project your voice or what tone to use, as well as how to use the recording equipment properly. Learning these things when asking how to get into voice acting for anime will help you look like a pro (even if you’re currently not).
4. Learn How to Act
When becoming a voice actor for anime, it’s important to realize that first and foremost, the job requires the ability to act. Your voice is an important part, but you need to know how to express emotion and convey meaning through how you speak the words and your tone.
Before you even head out for any anime voice audition, it’s in your best interest to learn how to act. Acting is an art form, and if you can’t perform, then you aren’t going to be successful when it comes to voice acting for anime.
There are a lot of people who think that voice acting is the ability to do impressions or create a “funny” voice. This may be part of it (and doing impressions or changing your voice could get you a job doing anime dub voice acting), but if you don’t know how to make the story exciting by how you present it, you won’t be successful when looking for anime voice acting jobs.
Again, this is when taking classes or finding other forms of training to become an actor can be beneficial.
5. Set Up a Studio in Your Home
When learning how to get into voice acting for anime, one thing you should consider is setting up a studio in your home. With the advancements in technology, it’s not that hard to find good equipment and software (it’s free to download Audacity) to help you with this endeavor.
You might consider dubbing your voice-over characters in existing shows and then scrutinizing your performance and how you sound. You can even ask others to give you feedback and criticism about your performance to hone your skills.
6. Put Together a Demo Reel and Resume
As you get better at your craft and decide that it’s time to apply for anime voice acting jobs, you need to be able to demonstrate your abilities to others. That’s when putting together a demo reel of your best performances will work to your advantage. Having a resume is also beneficial, as it will allow employers to see your experience.
Having a demo reel and resume, even if you’ve never actually done any anime dub voice acting, will show people that you are professional and serious about your craft. It may be just what you need to get noticed.
7. Become a Freelancer
When it comes to breaking into anime voice acting, starting out as a freelancer can be incredibly beneficial. It may not pay your bills or get you a ton of money, but it will get you valuable feedback from actual clients, as well as show others that you are ready and willing to put in the work to hone your craft.
A lot of people start their dream careers as a side gig, and you can do the same when it comes to learning how to get into voice acting for anime.
If you’re wondering how much do anime voice actors make, this can vary depending on who you work for. On average, you can expect to make around $37.00 per hour.
8. Start with Indie Projects
Another option you have when it comes to putting together a demo reel and resume is to do voice acting work for indie projects. Look for student productions or smaller studios that are putting out anime and need voice actors to work for cheap or even free.
It may not be ideal, but everyone has to pay their dues before they are able to make it big. It’s exceedingly rare to go from being a nobody to working for a large studio and making the big money.
Working on indie projects can help introduce you to people in the anime business, and since connections can help you find jobs, meeting as many people and doing as much work as possible will help in the long run.
9. Move to Where the Anime is Being Made
Technology has made it possible to work from home and apply for jobs around the world. However, if you’re serious about making it as an anime voice actor, you might consider moving to where the shows are being made.
Many voice directors prefer to work closely with their actors so that they can get the right performance out of them, and being close to the studio will work to your advantage.
10. Get to Know Others in Anime
You’ve heard the phrase, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” right? What that means is that knowing people in the business — and having a good reputation for being a dedicated, hard worker — may be the difference between getting jobs or not.
Networking will play an incredibly important role when it comes to getting jobs. Starting as a freelancer and working on indie projects will introduce you to people in the anime business who may be willing to give you a recommendation when you go to anime voice acting auditions or apply for jobs online, and this may be exactly what you need to get the job you’ve been dreaming of.
11. Use Social Media to Your Advantage
Networking with others in anime can be done in person, but you might also consider using your social media accounts to your advantage. Social media was developed to allow people to connect with one another, so find and follow your favorites from the anime world and engage with them as much as possible.
Find the balance between engaging and being annoying. You don’t want to contact them so much that you get blocked, but you also want to be known.
You can also use social media to show off your talents. Post some of your demo reel for people to enjoy and comment on. This could be a good way to get noticed and potentially get a job.
12. Attend Auditions
Of course, you can’t rest all of your hopes and dreams on the people you know. You have to go out and let others see your talents. Going to as many anime voice acting auditions as you can let people know of your existence and get you noticed.
Auditions can also help you hone your skills and get valuable feedback. The more you audition, the more chances you have of landing an anime voice acting job.
13. Be Ready for Long Hours
Being an actor often requires working long hours. The director is attempting to put together their vision, and that may mean redoing the same scene over and over until it’s perfect. That may also mean being in the studio late at night or early in the morning, whenever the schedule permits.
To make it in the business, you have to be flexible and willing to put in the hours that are required to put out an amazing final product.
14. Be Prepared to Rest Your Voice
No matter how much training you go through, being an anime voice actor is going to push your voice to the limits — especially if you are working on a show with fight scenes that require a lot of screaming.
Your voice is going to get tired, and you have to know when to rest it so that you can always give your best performance.
15. Keep Trying
Trying to break into any field where art is the main component is incredibly challenging. You’ll be handed “Nos” like they are going out of style. Rejection can wear on you after a while, but you have to remember not to take anything personally.
To put out the best anime possible, the studios have a specific vision in mind. Your voice may not be what they’re looking for at that moment in time, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be perfect for something else.
Finding work will be a grind, but if you keep trying, your persistence will eventually pay off and you’ll land an amazing job.
Be Part of the Anime World
The popularity of anime has been growing recently, and if you want to be part of this exciting world and are wondering how to get into voice acting for anime, here’s what you need to do:
- Be a Fan of Anime
- Develop Your Voice
- Consider Working with a Vocal Coach
- Learn How to Act
- Set Up a Studio in Your Home
- Put Together a Demo Reel and Resume
- Become a Freelancer
- Start with Indie Projects
- Move to Where the Anime is Being Made
- Get to Know Others in Anime
- Use Social Media to Your Advantage
- Attend Auditions
- Be Ready for Long Hours
- Be Prepared to Rest Your Voice
- Keep Trying
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