Nasim Benelkour All Ages of Geek

We Interviewed Voice Actor Nasim Benelkour

Hello! My name is Nasim Benelkour. I’m what you’d call a man with a lot of paths, since I’m a Voice Actor, Casting Director, Content Creator, Actor, Model, and properly will be in pursuit of other careers in the future. My Voice Acting career has been through the span of 7 years but I only started to want to pursue this career seriously in November of 2021. You can hear my voice across Animation, Video Games, Dubbing, Commercials, Radio, and more! With my most notable roles being Dunstan in Dungeon Rummage Origins (Steam), Albert in Lovers in Crime (Webtoon), John in Chikara Power of God (Web Comic), Various NPCs in Wynncraft, Casey in Pick Up Artists Game (Social Media Advert), and as the narrator for thousands of Top 10 Youtube Videos (Content Creation Company). 

1.What inspired you to become a voice actor?

What inspired me to become a voice actor was an instance long ago when I was an animator at the age of 12. I wasn’t passionate about animation anymore, since the gurling aspect of animating frame by frame finally was able to overlap my true passion for the career, which was telling a story. I sat down with myself, trying to figure out the next best thing for me to try and pursue. I dabbled in voice acting throughout my time as an animator, voicing in my own productions along with voicing in my peers’ productions as well, even having the opportunity to cast voice actors for myself and other people. That entire experience was nothing but fun and exciting, so I decided to find out more. Funny enough, I don’t really count that span in my career as even though I was pursuing the craft, I wasn’t taking it seriously. It was when I was 16 and had the chance to work with someone by the name of Darrian Brewer (IAMWAVEZ). He was my first ever director and he gave me my first ever opportunity to voice in a project, it was a fandub for K Return of the Kings. By doing that, hearing my own voice alongside everyone else, seeing how much of a drive Darrian had towards this career, lit a fire inside of me. A fire that continues to burn brighter even now.

2.Can you describe your process for preparing for a voice acting role?

I’m not usually on to vocally prepare myself for a session, audition, or even practice. Do I recommend doing that? No. Has it worked out for me so far? Yes. I don’t personally do vocal warmups or exercises because I’m a strong believer in muscle recovery leads to muscle improvement. When you tear a muscle (which your vocal cords are) they tend to grow back and become even stronger, am I encouraging damaging your vocal cords? No. Am I personally worried or scared to damage or strain my vocal cords? Also No. If something does happen that will be the result of me not doing vocal warmups, then that’s on me. But I do prepare for auditions and my preparation for an audition goes as follows. There’s a lot of information on audition documents that a lot of talent have the tendency to overlook, so the first thing I’d do is read everything once, just a simple read to take in the information of the audition and make sure I’m eligible to audition for the roles. Next, I get critical, I look over the synopsis to get an understanding of this story that the creators are trying to tell. Afterwards, if there are multiple characters in the audition document, I find the character that I relate and connect with the most. I then read over their synopsis, while visualizing this character’s needs and wants. Finally, I look at the lines, and attempt to understand why the character is saying what they are saying, along with their needs and wants throughout these lines as well.

3.What has been your biggest challenge as a voice actor and how have you overcome it?

I feel as the biggest challenge in my voice acting career, was definitely trying to convince select members of my family that this career will work out. Voice Acting as a career is a slow path, I metaphorically compare it to the game of chess, and the people that try to take the fast road usually don’t end up doing so well. In the middle of my career, through taking it seriously, I came to a constant strain of arguments with members of my family, with them not being convinced that this career will make me any money. A lot of people, especially from the olden times, are not very open minded to the new ways of being successful in life, with thinking the only way to reach success is going to college and working in a career path that doesn’t provide you a single drop of happiness just to make some money. But, they were right to an extent. The truth of any career path is if you’re not making money from it, enough to support yourself independently, then there’s only so long that you can actually do that career full time for. So, I decided to find a way to make my business as a voice actor profitable, and actually make some type of consistent money from this career. That’s when I started working for Content Creation Company in their voice actor division, making consistent money every week doing top 10 and explainer videos on multiple youtube channels. Once I started doing that and showed those select members of my family, they complained a lot less about my career.

4.Can you tell us about a particularly memorable project you’ve worked on and why it stands out to you?

Well, I don’t want to single out the projects that I’ve worked on, because all of them stand out to me generally speaking. So instead I’ll bring up my most memorable audition I’ve ever gotten (At least the one I’m able to speak about). That audition was for a Lego Harry Potter Commercial. That stands out to me above all else because it really made my life come full circle. The type of animator I was way back when was a lego stop motion animator, so being able to do an audition for Lego was a jaw dropping experience. It’s something that I’ll never forget and even though I didn’t book it, I know I’ll be able to record for Lego sometime in my career. Once I do, one of my dreams will come to reality.

5. How do you handle the pressure of performing in front of a microphone?

Honestly, there isn’t a lot of pressure if I’m being honest. It’s different when you’re by yourself in your home studio to doing a live session to actually going in the studio. There are some nerves that come out during it, especially if you’re recording for something big or life changing. Breathing has been the biggest help in calming down my nerves in any situation that they would arise. Simple breath in for 5 breath out for 5 and repeating that process can help a ton. Usually for me, a lot of my nerves are overlapped with excitement, since performing is something I love to do.

6.Can you share any advice for aspiring voice actors just starting out in the industry?

Although I won’t give out all the keys to the castle, I’ll share three things about starting out that usually don’t get expressed much.

Do your Research. A lot of voice actors that enter this space don’t know what they are getting into. So when they’re met with an unexpected obstacle or road bump, they have more of a tendency to give up and quit. People don’t know what it takes to succeed in this industry, as this space is filled with obsessed, driven, motivated, and competitive voice actors like me, that wan’t the same opportunities you do. Voice Acting as a whole is so intricate and there is so much information surrounding it. People that are in this Industry still continue to take workshops and classes and do research because no matter how long you’ve been in this industry for, you will never know everything and there is always something for you to learn. So getting that initial grasp at what it takes to be a successful voice actor, what obstacles you would have to jump over throughout your career, and being an information sponge to learn everything you need to know about this space, is crucial.

Have a Plan. Have a plan for everything. Have one when your plan doesn’t work out, for when it does work out, and have a one for how you’ll get there. Planning ahead and planning out your path, becomes not only helpful but one of the bigget tools for success. People that are successful in this space dind’t magically get there by the string of luck, they planned to get there. They had a plan for what they would do when they were in the industry, they had a plan for what they would do if they couldn’t get into the industry, and they had a plan for how they would get into the industry. 

Find your Motivation and Light your Fire. People that are in this space are all obsessed with this career. They constantly put in the work even while being in this space every single day. Your motivation and what drives you, will be the key part in your success, it will determine your productivity, how you approach your career, and if you’d be able to get back up after being knocked down. Your favorite voice actor will not hesitate to attempt to out book you, we all have lives, we all have to keep the lights on. So make it a mission to make your flame brighter than everyone else, and strive to accomplish each and everyone of your goals, and don’t let anyone tell you that it isn’t possible.

 7.Can you tell us about a time when you had to adapt to a new character or voice?

Well adapting is apart of the job, if you don’t know how you adapt then you’ll struggle a lot in this space. I’ve adapted to almost every role or opportunity that was presented to me. The key part in learning how to adapt is being vulnerable to new things. It’s a learning process and it’ll definitely take more than 1 or 2 reads. 

8. How do you stay motivated and engaged during long recording sessions?

Motivation or engagement has never really been a problem for me, as my fire for this career is what gives me that motivation for everything. I would suggest that during long sessions make sure you take breaks. A lot of smaller projects aren’t union so you have to take it upon yourself to tell the director when you need a break, and if you need a break, TAKE ONE. It makes no logical sense to overwork yourself during a session without a break, because I promise you, it won’t sound good.

9.Can you tell us about an experience you had while working on a project where you had to improvise or come up with an unexpected solution?

This happened particularly during me doing some dubbing work recording remotely for some russian live action movies, and during the session my wifi was really bad. So there were big delays in the recording that I was dubbing over. This kind of ADR dind’t include the “3 beeps” I was normally used to and this type of ADR was with just timecodes, so doing that with a delay became much harder. I couldn’t do much about this situation so I decided to count the delay with my hands, essentially creating my own 3 beep method. Since there was a 5 second delay, I would count 5 seconds in my hand and then go. Since Live Action Dubbing isn’t so strict on the lip sync, it was much easier to do this method.

10.Can you share a funny or interesting story from your time as a voice actor?

My funniest times during this career is my outtakes (my bloopers), usually no one else hears it because I’m recording by myself, but in live sessions people get a taste of it and it’s super fun and enjoyable to hear peoples reactions to these outtakes of mine. I do like when recording environments are chill and laid back, as I’m able to be more personable with my directors in that type of setting.

11.Can you share your favorite voice acting moment or performance?

I feel as my most memorable voice acting moment was when being able to see that I was meant to be in this career. When I went throughout taking multiple workshops in the start of taking my career seriously, having those moments when my teachers told me that I was good enough and I had incredible talent, only my the fire inside of me burn brighter.

12.Can you tell us about a voice acting project you turned down and why?

Well generally speaking I turn down any fan project or fan work. I used to be very open to doing fan projects earlier in my career but not so much anymore. Theres really nothing about fan projects that spark my interest and when something doesn’t spark my interest I filled less inclined to want to do it. I feel as though pursuing or taking part in any production or project that doesn’t particularly connect to you or interest you, is useless.

13. How do you keep your voice in good condition for voice acting?

Well although I don’t do vocal warmups or exercises, I do make sure to drink lots of water. When my voice is strained I do drink honey tea.

14.Can you tell us about a time when you had to take on a role that was completely different from what you were used to?

Well I never really have this instance of doing roles that I’m not used to when I’m booked, because majority of my bookings are roles that are within my type cast which are roles that I’m usually accustomed to. When it comes to auditions however whenever I’m met with a role or character type that I havent done before, I really just wing it to be honest.

15.Where can people find you online?

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