A Short History of Voice Acting in the US | Voice Talent Now

A Short History of Voice Acting in the US

Tuesday, April 21, 2020
There are roughly 135,600 in the United States, although you are probably only familiar with a handful of these. Most familiar faces will appear on the big screen or on prime time TV across the country but their face isn't the only thing you'd recognize.
Most experienced actors go through specific voice training and some even carve out a career in voice acting. In fact, voice-over acting has been an art for more than 110 years! 
The history of voice acting is rich and full of names you may know. Read on to find out more about this amazing art form and about some of the most famous voice actors in history.

History of Voice Acting: Humble Beginnings

The first-ever voice-over in the history of voiceovers took place on Christmas Eve in 1906 and was made by Reginald Fessenden.
Fessenden released the broadcast from a makeshift studio in Boston. Previous broadcasts had focused on weather reports for ships and sharing snippets of popular music.
However, this one contained a short entertaining speech. This paved the way for voiceover acting history - showing a voice reel can be entertaining as well as informative.
However, voice acting on-screen really took off with the success of cartoons. These allowed the filmmakers to synchronize actors' speech with the cartoon action on the screen. Popular cartoons included Mickey Mouse and Looney Toons. 
These were some of the first talking pictures to be released in the United States. 

Voice Actors of Note

Unlike famous Hollywood stars, you probably won't be familiar with some of the most well-known voice-over actors in America. However, you will probably know their work inside out. 
By far the most recognized voice actor is Walt Disney - the creator and voice of Mickey Mouse. In fact, many people wrongly name him as the first-ever voice actor ahead of Reginald Fessenden.
In the 1930s, Mel Blanc made a name for himself working with Warner Bros on Looney Toons and other projects. He voiced many of the show's famous characters including Tweety Pie, Porky Pig, and Bugs Bunny. In the business, he was commonly known as 'The Man of a Thousand Voices'. 
Since the 1960s, Don LaFontaine has become a voiceover legend in the industry. Before his death in 2008, he voiced more than 5,000 movie trailers so you'd be sure to recognize his voice!

Voice Acting in Modern Day America

Nowadays, voice acting is an essential part of everyday life in the US, whether you realize it or not.
The history of voice actors is no longer simply based on film, radio, or TV. As well as cartoons and animated movies, actors frequently do voice over work on mainstream commercials. 
This is a great way for businesses to bring in more customers. Getting a familiar voice behind your brand helps to engage people and build a trusting relationship.
Finding the right voice over actor for Alexa, for example, was essential to the success of the Amazon Echo. That is why many companies will now pay big bucks to find the right voice to promote their brand.

Find the Right Voice Actor Today! 

The history of voice acting is rich, entertaining, and growing by the day. Finding the right voice to promote your brand will help to put you out there like never before. 
Get in touch today to start your search for the best voice over actor for your company. We're here to help.

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