I've been doing voicework for over 20 years. It's mostly been a 'side-hustle' that complemented my main income as a radio star*. In 2020, I lost my radio job and started to focus on the voiceover more. Over the last 20 years I had occassionally sought representation with a voiceover agency. It wasn't until about 3 years ago that I got serious about finding an agent. After a few bursts of sending out demos and trying to get an agent, I got one for the Seattle market. Sorta. That was more of a 'test-run' with a really nice guy who owned his own agency. That didn't work out. Flash to June of 2022 and I get a hit back from a small agency. "Cool!" Well, not so 'cool' as it would turn out.
- They ended up giving me all sorts of red flags to not work with them like not replying to my emails ("I'll send you x...") for months at a time (and only after I followed up with them!),
- sending me another voice actor's filled out contract and other paperwork WITH THEIR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER,
- not being able to attach a document to an email
- Not returning a phone call after I left a voice message (HEAR ME!!)
- Very first audition I received from them was the most jumbled, convolution of directions that I'd ever seen in a voice job audition. My brain is still trying to figure what the direction was supposed to be.
Yet, despite all of this, I still pursued them being my representation. I ignored that message my gut was telling me which was: "No! No! NO!" What influenced me going with them, and what's really confounding, is I asked a couple fellow voice actors about them and they both had good things to say. Neither of these guys had anything bad to say. I guess they just had a better experience than I did. I signed with them but about 2 weeks after that I was gone. I asked them to let me out of the contract and they obliged. Almost TOO willingly did they oblige me. Their response to my very professional 'please terminate this contract...' email was 'sounds good.' Whuh? That tells me that they never really wanted me in the first place. I think when I first hit them up I think that either they were interested or maybe they just weren't that big on voiceover as they DO do on-camera and other type of representation. And their feeling was something along the lines of, 'meh. Sure. Why not?'
Regardless, they taught me a valuable lesson. Which is, when you're bringing somebody into your professional circle, especially a profession where you are the sole proprietor, you should make sure these folk are at least SEEMING like they wanna work with you. There should be no wavering on whether or not they appear to be eager to trudge through it by your side. And MORE so if they are tasked with representing you. How can someone be interested in getting you work if they're not interested in YOU? I've since moved on to a different agency who, based on my phone calls with them and email exchanges, appear to care about my career and, ultimately, making money. I'm hopeful and excited about working with this new agency. And, get this, I get the feeling they feel the same way.