Voice Over Boot Camp!

Voice over coach Rachel Alena and Boulder Writing Studio Present….

Voice Over Boot Camp (click here to sign up!)

Find your voice! Voice over training to learn the essentials of the voice-over industry in this 4-week immersion with professional voice acting coach and national voice talent Rachel Alena.

Designed for absolute beginners and those looking to improve their skills, this hands-on intensive explores the business of the voice acting world and the skills necessary for a successful voice acting career. Participants will leave with a solid working knowledge of the voice over industry, their own vocal talent, and the basics of setting up a home studio.

When: Saturdays 10:00am-12:30pm, April 8–April 29

Cost: 4 sessions $480



Session One: Essentials of Voice Acting

You’ll learn:
•    The key to connecting with the audience
•    How to analyze a script to make it pop
•    What casting directors are looking for in a voice talent
•    How the voice acting industry works
•    Minimum requirements for long term success in the industry

You’ll practice:
•    Copy reading techniques
•    Fun, interactive script reading

Session Two: Voice Care & Commercial Voice Over Immersion

You’ll learn:
•    How the voice mechanism works and how to care for it
•    The different types of timing in voice acting
•    The importance of vocal rhythm and variation in narration
•    The business of radio, television, and web-spot voice acting

You’ll practice:
•    Breathing techniques essential for successful voice acting
•    Articulation exercises
•    Group analysis and reading of commercial script copy
•    Skill development of voicing commercial type copy
•    Starting to find your “money voice”
•    Microphone techniques

Session Three: Industrial Voice Over Immersion

You’ll learn:
•    The high-growth business of industrial voice over: voice acting for e-learning, tutorials & professional training materials
•    Who hires industrial voice talent and how much you can realistically get paid
•    Recording software and studio set up basics

You’ll practice:
•    Group script reading of industrial types of copy
•    Continued development of narration skills: script analysis, narration rhythm & vocal variation
•    Fine-tuning your ‘money voice’
•    Your first session in a client’s studio: what to expect & what’s expected

Session Four: Audiobook Narration

You’ll learn:
•    What audiobook writers and producers expect
•    Basic development of characters for animation, video games & audiobook narration
•    Time management
•    Where audiobook narration work is found
•    How the audiobook industry works

You’ll practice:
•    Storytelling skills for successful audiobook narration
•    Character development techniques
•    Audiobook narration timing
•    Review the importance of breath work
•    How to prepare for audiobook narration

Rachel Alena, a national voice talent, brings 20 years of experience in voice acting to her students. She has voiced hundreds of narrations for clients such as  The Rockefeller Foundation, Goldman Sachs, Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, and Momosa Publishing. She also provides private voice over training in her studio located near Denver, Colorado.

Image A Problem Solver: Your New Job Description

Voice talent and voice acting coach Rachel Alena talks about being:

A Problem Solver

Welcome to your new job description.

This morning, I took some time off to visit my step-dad. He is in a rehab center about an hour away from my recording studio. I had some time to think during the drive.

Prior to two weeks ago, he was on vacation in Mexico. At the time, his job was essentially to enjoy retirement. Learn about new cultures. Travel the world.

Unexpectedly though, while on vacation, he had a stroke. He lost his ability to speak. He currently can’t move the right side of his body. His thinking is fine, but his body isn’t yet receiving the messages. What a difficult thing for this wonderful man to have to go through.

This got me thinking on the drive home.

Now, my step-dad has a Very. New. Job. Description.

His current job description is now: Learn to walk again. Learn to form words again. Learn to communicate with the world again. These are problems he MUST now solve.

This is an extreme case of a new set of problems to solve. But, it reminds me of something many of us deal with every day.

Are you waiting for someone else to figure it out for you?

Is it too hard to start? Are you full of dreams and desires, but hoping someone will knock on your door and hand them to you? Or, are you waiting to be forced into a situation where you MUST solve problems. That seems like the hard way to go.

I can tell you this. As a voice talent and voice acting coach, I have had to learn the sometimes very difficult role of becoming a problem solver.

Of course, it’s awesome to get help from people with knowledge. Those with proven experience can guide you, teach you and be motivational. But, in the end, if you don’t make ‘problem solver’ part of your job description, you may find yourself a step behind the rest of the world. That’s because, as tough as this is, the world isn’t waiting for you. It’s busy handing rewards out to those who are figuring it out.

For example, for me, so far this week:

The Problem? I’m teaching voice over training workshops. They will be at The Boulder Writing Studio in Boulder, Colorado. As a voice acting coach providing these workshops, they need to be interactive, so students can hear themselves as we record.

My Solution? Figure out how to add mobile technology to my workshop trainings. Either I solve this problem and take action or I don’t teach voice acting workshops that are integrative. Period.

The Next Problem? Two people reached out to me this week asking me to provide them with voice over training. They are both out-of-state.

My Solution? Learn how to provide remote training. Either solve this problem or don’t connect with people outside of Colorado. Period.

As I sit here today…

I realize that my step-dad wasn’t waiting to be put in a situation where his brain and body MUST solve these very difficult problems. That’s just what happened. Now, he has no choice but to make it his job to be A Problem Solver.

What about you?

Are you interested in adding a little grit, hard work and determination to your life? Maybe the possible reward is getting what you really want?

If so, then consider adding the magic fairy dust otherwise known as ‘Problem Solver’ to your resume. Then see what happens.

Rachel Alena is a voice acting coach and voice talent based out of Colorado. She has narrated on hundreds of projects for companies such as Proctor & Gamble, Old Navy, Disney, T-Mobil and has been a voice talent for 20+ years.

Image How to be an audiobook narrator

About Being An Audiobook Narrator

As a voice acting coach, I’m often asked the following question. How is being an audiobook narrator different from other types of voice over work?

To answer this question, we need to think about the goal of the writer. Depending on the type of job you are doing, as a voice actor, the goal is often to sell a product or service. Or, it can be to train and educate people. However, the craft of being an audiobook narrator is different than either of those. As a book narrator you are helping to shape the STORY being told by the book’s author. Sometimes it may even feel like you are an extension of the writer themselves.

In audiobook voice over narration the voice talent must:

  • Transform written text into something listeners will not only enjoy, but get lost in.
  • Be able to bring words to life. Multiple characters, changing story lines, varying moods.
  • Understand perspectives. Be able to convey the differences between them.
  • Use breath control!  Long stories?  Many hours of using the voice can take its toll. Voice acting training can help with this.
  • Master time management skills. A 30 chapter book can’t be read all in one week! Want to meet the publisher’s deadlines? The voice talent must plan accordingly.
  • Most importantly! Tell the story as the author intended. After all, you are the messenger of the writer’s point of view.

With 20+ yrs of experience, female voice over talent Rachel Alena is currently an audiobook narrator for Momosa Publishing. She also provides voice over training in her Louisville area Denver voice over studio. For more information, visit http://www.rachelalena.com/voice-acting-training/. She’ll help you find your voice!

Image 5 Reasons Why 2017 Could Be A Great Year!

Happy 2017! Did you feel it too? Ready for 2016 to be over? 

As a little celebration, I’ve comprised a list of my top 5 reasons why 2017 might just be a little kinder to us all.


5. We finally get to meet Ben Affleck’s brother Casey. The Best Actor front-runner for Manchester by the Sea has been living in his brother’s shadow (not to mention, under the thumb of his past sexual harassment controversy). Go get ’em Casey.

4. New Chinese-related emojis! We really needed these. A set of four new emojis came via a Kickstarter campaign which referred specifically to the dumpling emoji by name, yet went on to include the fortune cookietakeout box and chopsticks as well.

3.Disney-Pixar has officially announced a fourth Toy Story film will be released in June 2017. Yep, three just wasn’t enough. Get your Buzz on. To 2017 and beyond!

2. Dubai announced that it will be organizing and hosting the world’s first World Future Sports Games in December 2017. The World Future Sports Games will be featuring innovative and state-of-the-art tech to compete in sports. 

The first Games will be hosted by Dubai and will be held over a 3-day period from December 28 – December 30, 2017. The aim is to hold the games every 2 years for a 3-day period, hosted by different participating countries. There will be nine futuristic competitions that employ modern technology and artificial intelligence:

  • driverless car racing,
  • robotic soccer,
  • robotic running competitions,
  • robotics swimming,
  • robotic table tennis,
  • robotic wrestling,
  • drones races and
  • cybathlon competition. 

1. What? The first human head transplant could occur as early as 2017! Medical News Today reported that Italian scientist Sergio Canavero of the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group says his “Gemini” spinal fusion protocol could be used to extend the lives of patients suffering from progressive muscle and nerve diseases and terminal cancer. A 30-year-old Russian man is set to become the first person to undergo the procedure. Hmmmm….this one is hard to wrap your head around, isn’t it?