English German Bilingual Voice Talent Spotlight on Rivka

english german bilingual voice talent rivkaThe extraordinarily talented English German bilingual voice talent, Rivka, joined the Marketing Messages roster of voiceover talents only this year, but in that short amount of time she has quickly proven to be a customer favorite. With her friendly and energetic voice, Rivka is the perfect fit for the more conversational and relatable sound that more and more customers are seeking for their professional voice recordings.

“I currently sit in a nice pocket age-wise because I can maneuver between sounding young, millennial, and bright, and sounding more professional, warm, and knowledgeable,” she explains. “I think customers respond well to my voice either way because I always make sure to be inviting and approachable. I’ve also been told I do well with subtle and cerebral copy – I do a chic British accent that has booked a handful of really cool spots!”

Originally from Colorado Springs, Rivka had to travel to the other side of the world to discover her calling. It was while she was living in Berlin that she found a new creative outlet after a lifetime of performing, a creative outlet that would steadily become a career.

“A mentor of mine in Berlin was involved in dubbing and he asked me to come voice some characters in various foreign film dubs he directed,” Rivka says. “My first job with him was four years ago, but I didn’t go full time VO until 2 years after that. VO turned out to be good fit for me was because I already had a BFA in acting, and, additionally, I’ve been a singer my whole life. So performance and vocal skills have always been a part of my portfolio.”

English German Bilingual Voice

During my time in Berlin, I became fluent in German. I enjoyed learning the language simply for the challenge, but it’s proven professionally useful, as well. It’s an asset in working with German or German-speaking production houses and companies because communication is easier – this is mostly where it comes in handy, and then I record for them in English. They also always appreciate a native English speaker’s ear when it comes to clunky parts of the script, which has often been translated. But for Marketing Messages and a couple of other US-based studios, I actually record for them in German. In both scenarios, it’s just a fun chance for me to speak it again!

As Rivka has steadily built her business over the last few years, she has developed her own system of preparation and care to keep her voice in peak condition.

“Doing a very light humming pattern is good for when the voice has been overworked,” she says. “And being hydrated is a big one – I chug a 48 oz of water first thing every morning to give myself a good head start in the day. The most demanding aspect of voiceover work for me, at least physically, is when I have to speak a lot of text with a lot of vocal fry. Vocal fry can be good for the cords in small amounts, but when I have a full two or three pages of copy to do in a very millennial sounding voice, it’s taxing. I try to split this up into two days so as to give my voice some rest in between.”

Another warm-up exercise that comes in handy: Tongue twisters!

“I always stretch my mouth and tongue out and then run through about five or six different tongue twisters,” Rivka says. “I flub words left and right if I don’t do my tongue twisters first!”

Rivka may have a career that keeps her inside and recording for long periods of time, but the girl from Colorado Springs still has an inexhaustible zest for the outdoors. It’s why she returned to the mountains after years away, unable to remain apart from the hiking, the rock climbing, the camping, or the backpacking.

And as a performer, Rivka has the same spirit of adventure and daring, leaping into every new project with energy and imagination, especially those jobs that allow more room for her as a performer.

“I do really enjoy dubbing,” she says. “It’s a chance to do some acting work (without having to memorize any lines!), so it feels more creative than traditional VO. It’s also more collaborative because you have the director on the line with you through the whole session, and you’re working together to get the best take. Most VO work is relatively solitary, so it’s a nice change of pace when a dubbing gig comes along. I am really hoping to just go to town in the commercial and corporate voice narration worlds.”

Whether she is exploring the great outdoors with her trusty Bernedoodle Zeb, or climbing into the recording booth for a new recording session, Rivka is excited by each new challenge, and all the potential inside of each challenge.

“The most demanding aspect is constantly trying to be ahead of the curveball in securing work and not knowing what the next week or month may bring!” she says. “My business is still pretty young, so I’m still building it up, which takes most of my energy. Who knows where the wind will blow!”

Listen to Rivka on our Voices page

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