Pursuing the Comic Life
I grew up with an interest in animation; drawing, watching cartoons and studying film.
I fell in love with odd characters, I loved dialects and stutters, I loved listening to strange accents and weird pronunciations. I myself would mimic and impersonate these characters, most of the time I did this without a thought and 'just for fun.'
I wanted to voice my own creations. I started looking into what a voice actor does, and I found that the Looney Tune cartoons that I loved so much were mostly voiced all by a single person. This ignited an interest in the behind-the-scenes of animation. I began researching how films were made, how voices were recorded, and who recorded them.
As I dived deeper into the world of animation my interest towards 'instant animation' grew. My interest in animation was particular to the silly action but I was exhausted with the time that animation stole from me. I loved the feeling of creation and seeing something come to life, but I wanted it finished faster.
After I got a microphone, I began experimenting. The first months were awkward. I hated the sound of my own voice... so I changed it. I would speak in a different way, I would try to hide my voice... I spoke as characters that I would mimic, but I didn't realize how musical my ear was...
Sitting at home one day I decided to try out the new community video network: YOUTUBE. I decided to upload a short video with myself speaking as several film characters and actors. It was an experiment in the system to see how supportive YouTube could be... nothing happened... a few dozen people saw it... nothing.
A few months later I decided to try again, this time I was more confident after recording myself daily and paying closer attention to the actors that I admired. I uploaded the second video and again... nothing happened... at least for a few weeks...
I awoke one morning to find 400 emails in my mailbox. The viewing count on my video had reached over 30,000! It was popularized somehow and spread throughout the network.
One year later, I was continuing to post new videos and shorts based off of comedic impersonations. I focused more time on my new found talent and expanded my voice acting vocabulary but still focused on art. One morning in August I received an email from the producer of Saturday Night Live, the biggest new comedy outlet in America. They asked me to audition for their show.
I was flown to NYC, auditioned for 5 minutes, received thunderous applause from the staff and sent back home. I later found out I was not selected, but it was more of an enlightening experience than a sadness. I suddenly was slapped in the face, "not many people can do this!" The biggest tv corporation in America, NBC, spent money to fly me within a day's notice to NYC to audition amongst 20 other PROFESSIONAL comedy hopefuls for a chance to join the prestigious cast. I realized that not many people could do what I could do, especially at my age of 20 years old.
From than on I switched my entire focus on this new opportunity. I have been forever changed and now pursuing a career in comedy. My skills have led me to recent small fortunes, with clients urging me to record impersonations of their favorite characters. I hope to continue my education of comedy and I am walking through new doors everyday. My life has been a rapid river now that I have found something that no one else can offer.
I currently work as a freelance voice actor, impersonating and creating characters. In-between I am creating my own internet variety show where I play off of characters and comedic sketches. I work as a student DJ and besides all this voice work I still draw... with a focus on humor. The next goal of mine is to try stand up comedy, I hope to incorporate my voice talents with comedic written material...
All this was possible because of encouragement. I would have never uploaded a video to Youtube had it not been for friends and family begging to showcase my "silly voices." Now my silly voices pay my bills. I am happy and hopeful for the future, because I have discovered all this at such a young age, the world is opening up...