Their voices beckon you to watch a ”fresh Gilmore Girls” or an ”all-new 24.” They tempt you with bloated promises of sharp laughs and dramatic twists, but those eloquent folks, they keep you tuning in. So who are those phantom network promo announcers? And isn’t that woman who does MTV’s 10 Spot oddly seductive?
THE VOICE OF ABC’S Desperate Housewives; Lost; Grey’s Anatomy; ”Sometimes Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, when it’s a real heartwarming one.”
VOCAL STYLE Classic, vaguely Midwestern (”America’s favorite night of television…”).
HIT-STARVED ”ABC put me under contract seven years ago. I was there during the dry years, and so it’s just nice to have a couple of [hit] shows.”
PROMO POINTER Teamwork. ”It’s really the writing, the visuals, and the voice all together.”
THE VOICE OF FOX’S 24; The Simpsons; Family Guy; The Simple Life; American Dad.
VOCAL STYLE Raspy, gruff, and urgent (”The nonstop season of 24 continues…”).
YOU BETTA RECOGNIZE ”People ask, ‘Where have I heard you?’ I get away with [in a booming voice] ‘Coming soon to a theater near you.’ It’s embarrassing. It’s like saying ‘You’re a comedian? Make me laugh. You’re a plumber? Fix my sink.”’
PROMO POINTER Sincerity. ”You have to believe what you’re reading. If you don’t, who is?”
THE VOICE OF NBC’S Will & Grace; Joey; Scrubs; The Tonight Show.
VOCAL STYLE Friendly and familiar (”On an all-new Joey…”)
CAREER PATH ”I was the voice of Michelangelo on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for 10 years. I never in a million years thought about doing cartoon voices.”
PROMO POINTER Efficiency and allure. ”I want to get the information across but in a way that will be compelling for people to listen to.”
THE VOICE OF MTV’S Real World/Road Rules: The Inferno; The Osbournes.
VOCAL STYLE Seductive, sassy, like a PG-13 phone-sex operator (”Things are gettin’ hot and heavy on an all-new Real World”).
KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE ”I was at a function for MTV and some kids came up to me and said, ‘Are you the 10 Spot lady?’ I said [breathily], ‘Tonight, at the 10 Spot.’ They all started screaming.”
PROMO POINTER Rocking. ”A gig the night before [with her group, The Dana Fuchs Band] gives me some extra raspiness.”
THE VOICE OF THE WB’S Everwood; 7th Heaven; Gilmore Girls.
VOCAL STYLE Pleasant, hip, and ominous when he needs to be (”On a fresh Everwood…”).
BEST JOB EVER ”With digital communication, I work out of my home, a horse farm in Virginia. I just go upstairs into my studio, and I can work with a radio station in Trinidad or an advertising agency in Australia.”
PROMO POINTER Speed. ”Often you’re fighting for time because the copy is overwritten. The client wants to get as many words into his message as possible.”