Debbie Speaks on the Road
Debbie Irwin’s years of experience voicing medical narration makes her an expert in this very specific genre of the voiceover industry. She has worked on every type of medical voiceover from MOAs and MODs, to instructional videos for patients and medical professionals, to pharmaceutical marketing. She has worked closely with healthcare systems and academic hospitals, medical advertising agencies and video production studios, and everything in between.
Because Debbie has done a bit of everything regarding the needs of medical voiceover, she knows the nuances and specific tones required for each kind of medical narration. She understands how vital it is that important information is accessible to the listener in a way they can fully grasp. Not to mention her bragging rights in regards to spitting out that complex medical terminology without missing a beat. She is the perfect person to take her know-how and skills on the road and talk about this interesting and complex part of the voice over industry.
Debbie has been asked to speak about her expertise surrounding medical narration. Through lectures and discussions, she goes over all the unique skills that are required for this type of voice over, and the crucial details both clients and voice over talent need to know in order to ensure a positive, successful outcome. Debbie has had a lot of fun sharing all her knowledge with those who work in medical narration from clients in the medical profession, actors and all those on the creative side of medical narration animations. And the reception has been exceedingly positive!
Check out the speaking events Debbie has participated in and a little bit about the content she discussed with her audience.
We're not always on the stage at the same time,
but we're all part of the same show.
We're not always on the stage at the same time, but we're all part of the same show.
What People Say
Wanted to take one more opportunity because I can’t thank you enough for joining us tonight. Your breadth of knowledge of the industry and particularly the area of Non-Broadcast is so invaluable, especially for those of us who are still getting ourselves off the ground, so I thank you so much for taking the time a night before several sessions to continue to share with us.
Universities / Academics
Yale Med X – Medical Narration
Debbie traveled up to Yale to talk to Med X, a national organization of pre-med and pre-health students, whose mission is to explore the healthcare field from an array of interdisciplinary, holistic perspectives. Debbie’s mission was to discuss whether or not medical narration is the icing on the cake.
She urges the students to think of voiceover as a valuable way to express vital information for all medical narration needs, for the variety of people that will be hearing it. Debbie talked to the group about how a voiceover can make or break a video, and the importance of seeking out expertise and quality people. She strongly expressed that though sound is invisible, it is absolutely essential.
UIC Biomedical Visualization (University of Illinois Chicago)- Medical Narration
Debbie led a presentation on how to work with voiceover artists, the language that is necessary to guide medical narration, and how to choose the right talent for the job. She detailed the reasons why it’s important to hire a professional talent with extensive experience. Debbie also talked about the characteristics that need to be considered before casting the right voice actor, as well as being aware of what an audience would want to hear in the narration. She discusses tips on how to best work with talent, how giving them all the components and information early will bring about a more positive working relationship and a successful recording!
University of New Haven
Debbie visited the University of New Haven to talk to marketing students about the importance of knowing your own brand and market oneself when looking for a job. She explained being able to market yourself professionally is a vital skill to have, not only at the beginning of your career, but throughout. Debbie gave the group important tips to utilize when looking for a job including how to communicate professionally both in person and over email, how to do your search before meeting a prospective employer, how to be prepared and ask smart questions. She explained how eye contact and a firm handshake can go a long way in asserting yourself as a serious candidate for a job. Debbie was also the featured speaker on a recent webinar for the University’s marketing, communication, and theater students about marketing yourself as a business and how to cultivate a successful voiceover career.
AMI: Cross-Pollination in Creative Circles
Debbie joined composer and songwriter Russell McLaughlin, and illustrator and animator James Archer, to discuss the process and benefits of cultivating symbiotic creative relationships with professionals in adjunct fields. Debbie talked about her experience working closely with composers and illustrators on various voiceover projects, and how each professional worked together collaboratively to create a successful final product. The talk highlighted how important it is to consider each element that goes into the animation, and how they should be handcrafted specifically to complement every other element. Debbie, Russell, and James demonstrated how these elements are incorporated in animation in five distinct ways, from silences to adding sound effects, music, voiceover, and illustrations gradually.
AMI: Medical Narration: Is it the Icing on the Cake?
At this talk, Debbie’s presentation was all about the importance of the voice in medical narration. She challenged the audience to think of the voice throughout the process of creating a medical video or animation. It is important to consider how the voice will coexist and complement the images, music and sound effects in a narration. Debbie talked about the factors and characteristics clients should consider before hiring a voiceover artist to narrate their medical text. Should the voice be male or female, young or mature, speak authoritatively or conversationally, and soon. It is vital that the voiceover clients and actors have clear communication and expectations in order to create a positive, collaborative work relationship.
Montgomery Place Chicago
At this talk Debbie discussed her personal experience with all types of voice over, not just medical, and the tips she picked up along the way. She encouraged the audience to really think about all the different places and ways in which you might hear voice over, especially the kinds they have not noticed until then. She talked about how the industry has changed from announcer type style to the ever-growing popularity of more conversational tones. Debbie talked about all the things a voice artist needs to consider before even stepping into the recording booth, down to the very outfit they plan to wear. Debbie guided the guests through her approach to script analysis from the tone, to tempo and inflection, showing the expertise she has gathered through her decades-long career as a voiceover talent.
Voice Actors of NYC on Dissecting the Medical Genre
Debbie took a deep dive into the medical genre with voice over actors who would like to break into this very specific industry. She went over all the different types of medical voiceover narration, what clients expect from voice talent, the process of the medical voiceover, and even fun terminology tongue twisters. Voice over artists learned all about what to expect and what it would take to become a voiceover actor for the medical narration genre.
Ivy Life Virtual Presentation
At this speaking event, Debbie opened up the discussion by examining all the different types of voiceover that might not be completely apparent, from Siri to audio tours, to Voice of God announcements and more. She talked about all the different hats a voiceover actor will have to wear in order to be successful. She went into all the ways clients, consumers and copywriters relate to the script of a voiceover. Debbie then expertly went into all the things a voiceover artist must consider before going into the recording booth, from preparing vocally, to the clothing and jewelry you plan to wear. Finally, she guided the audience on the most effective ways to analyze a script and how to ask smart questions.