What makes a good voice for a narrator?

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  • 1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

    A good narrator takes the time to know the ins and outs of the story before recording it.  They have to express the the concepts of the story so listeners get it.

    They speak clearly and distinctly (neither over-articulating or under-articulating.  They control plosives (the popping of hard consonants).

    They know when to use a more neutral diction and when to use a believable accent/dialect to make a character sound more authentic.  They understand there isn't one "American" accent or one "French" accent.  And there's no spillover between the narrator voice and the character voice.  Things like "he said" is said in the neutral narrator voice and not the character's voice. And they know when to drop an accent all together because otherwise it would be distracting.

    They make each character’s voice distinctive enough to stand apart from the rest so a listener can learn which character is speaking without having to be told.  (Accents are not the only or even best way to do this - it can be done through pitch and pacing as well.)

    They know how to pace the story.  They know when to take a slightly longer pause and when to speed up a bit.  And they're able to avoid repetitive cadence and pitch patterns.

    They have excellent breath/voice control - no gasping between sentences or fading out at the end of a phrase.  The volume is consistent.  There's no extraneous mouth noise or throat clearing.  

    They need stamina and a consistency.  The narrator can be constantly reading/recording six hours or longer a day and it usually takes several days to record a book so stamina is important.  And the neutral narrator voice needs to be consistent in pitch and energy from day to day.

    They're able to paint a picture with their words rather then just reading a story. They can produce emotions in a listener with just their voice.   A listener will not notice a good narrator because they will so caught up in the story.

  • Sathi
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Take lessons from Morgan Freeman, who seems to narrate everything.

  • 1 month ago

    A well-controlled sphincter. I knew someone who could say "Exterminate! Exterminate!" with his, after a meal of heavily-vinegared chips and mushy peas. It was a joy to hear, it really was.

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