Your favorite public broadcasting network, NPR, is looking for someone to record their "this... is NPR" voiceover show closers, "support for this program comes from..." ramblings, and more. You could be that person! Although, come to think of it, the following people have voices made of gold and silver and other precious things, so they might deserve the job. Because, really, you don't really want the job anyway. Hearing yourself after Ira Glass or Terry Gross might send you into a state of anxious paralysis. So it's best to leave it up to these pros who have become renowned for their vocal beauty.
Morgan Freeman is literally the voice of God. He's been recruited by the president, and more people are familiar with his larynx than Obama's, right? We have no data to prove that, but we're certain PPP could do one of their ridiculous polls, and that they'd find just that. Freeman, clearly, is the most obvious choice for any voiceover — like, ever — but his price tag may be too high. There's not a lot of money in public radio. But he has said some things on NPR's Tell Me More that made some waves, so, hey, maybe he'll do it for free?
Another too obvious choice. You're probably already familiar with Attenborough from his work on the BBC's Planet Earth. He's clear and concise, but the British accent doesn't exactly scream American public radio.
Niel Degrasse Tyson
This smooth-speaking scientist will be the favorite among the geek crowd. He's a regular guest on Colbert and Stewart, if you don't know him from his usual work on PBS and the History Channel. He has a soft, clear, velvety voice that would work well on the radio.
He may not be an immediately obvious choice, but he's still got a proven body of work behind him. Like Tyson, Schreiber has done work for PBS's Nova, but you would probably be more familiar with his HBO work. Schrieber's provided the voiceover narration for the 24/7 series and a number of other heralded HBO sports docs. He sounds completely differently when he's doing narration than in the movies.
Perhaps you only know her as the star of Ed or for her work on The View, but Whoopi is an accomplished narrator, too. She has a very distinct voice, and that helps with these things. It's a little gravelly, sure, but those years of stand-up experience have honed her into an effective speaker.
He may be too booked up with his busy slate of movies and Star Trek promotional work and, eventually, another season of Sherlock. But any man well spoken enough to play the famous British detective would probably do fantastic on the radio. Check out how quick and clear his delivery is here. He doesn't stutter or stumble once:
Who wouldn't listen to "... and this is NPR, hanhanhanhanhanhan"?
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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