And The Award Goes To… Marian Massaro!
SEVEN ?S WITH:
Growing up just 30 minutes from New York City with a love of the arts, this native New Yorker was positioned for prominence. Voicing national commercials, narrations, and promos for Fortune 500 companies including Simmons Beautyrest, Marriott, HP, Toyota and Vicks, she credits her success to years of acting and improv. Live Announcer of the New York Emmy Awards for the past three years, other notable jobs include voicing spots for the 2012 Presidential Campaign, and working with various TV Affiliates and radio stations across the country.
1) How did you get into the voiceover industry?
I started studying acting in high school, & continued after at HB Studio in NYC. Got involved in plays, and eventually started doing some on-camera work. The ‘light-bulb’ moment came when I attended one of Backstage’s Actorfests that they put on yearly. It’s an actors convention held on both coasts. There was a break-out session called “How to Get Into Voiceovers” with Stacy Seidel-Tea – now of Broadcasters – who was, and still is, a very prominent casting director. I followed her advice to the “T”- taking vo classes, following up with a demo, and as I started to book work – marketing the spots to other producers – booking more spots, getting better demos, and actually – that’s still what I’m doing today!! So, shout out to Stacy!!!
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2) What is your favorite part about live announcing?
Omg, I love everything about it…. It’s the MOST fun… Receiving the script and preparing, Rehearsals are great – meeting new people, or working with the same ones from a previous show again, the excitement of being part of an amazingly awesome gigantic production, and, of course, Live T.V…. Need I say more???
3) Do you get nervous at award shows? If so, how do you manage it?
— Actually, no. It’s not a nervousness.. It’s more of an exhilaration feeling.. An excitement.. I would imagine the same type of feeling when an actor walks out onto a stage on Broadway, or a new pilot flying a plane solo for the first time.. And, it feels that way each time I do a show.. It never changes!! The same excitement is always there.. It’s SO much fun.. And when a show ends, I always wish we could start it all over again..
4) Performing live can be challenging, and believe me I know; I played Smokey once in Damn Yankees (jealous?). Has the live component ever led to some unique mishaps? We want details.
HAHAHAHA…. Yes, I love live theatre.. I’m VERY jealous!! Yes, I’ve seen things happen on shows, but never the ones I’ve worked on thank God.. It’s Live TV!! That’s the fun of it, and sometimes the unexpected can happen, and you just have to go with it… It’s when you back away or try to stop it where it can appear worse than it is.. Just keep going and move forward I would say.. I’ve taken years of improvisation & still do, and I believe that’s helped me deal with all the “unexpected” things in life, and be able to pop back up again. The only thing I can think of that happened is – seconds before I was about to announce someone to the stage, I heard the stage manager in my ear that the person wasn’t backstage & someone else was coming out instead. He asked me just to make up something, and I did.. That’s the improv..
5) During the commercial breaks are you allowed to laugh at the bad acceptance speeches?
LOL, no… I mean I guess you could if you want to, but I’m usually too busy looking at the next few pages.. When I’m doing a show, because it’s live, the script can sometimes change depending on what’s happened before it. So, throughout the show script coordinators come in and hand you new pages you need to look over between commercial breaks – or sometimes while the show is still going on. If a show has a time frame with a hard out and acceptance speeches run longer than expected, some of the pages can be taken out for timing. So you have to follow along the entire time, and the most important thing is ALWAYS listen to the director who’s in my ear through my headphones.
6) You announced the 2014 Critics Choice Television Awards. Julia Louis-Dreyfus won for Veep that year. So the obvious question is: Did she say anything about me? Or was she trying to play it cool?
You know, I ‘think’ she was trying to play it cool… But your name DID come up in conversation.. 🙂
7) As a voiceover talent what is your golden rule?
Be prepared, be professional & be courteous to Everyone. Be someone YOU’D want to work with. Be on time – just the usual stuff that pertains to any business really.. Most of all – HAVE FUN & ENJOY THE RIDE!!!!! (Isn’t that why we all do this????)