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Spare A Thought For The Voice Artists

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Tomorrow's a huge day for Complete Esperanto. The voice artists are off to the studio to record the audio for the course!

They're going to be busy; here are the run sheets I prepared, showing which artists are playing which character in which tracks:


You'll be able to see for yourself that the main protagonists are characters called Sara and Roberto, played by Stela Besenyei and Ian Carter. Sara appears in nearly every single conversation in the book, which is why Stela very rarely has any other spoken role in the book. Ian benefits from a break in the early units and so can pick up other characters. His day is going to be particularly busy, though, because he's also the voice who works with the narrator to introduce you to new vocabulary and expressions in every unit.

Sally Phillips really has her work cut out; she plays several of the main characters, including a couple of scenes in which she plays two distinctive people and even has to talk to herself. Fortunately, she's a very accomplished actress; I once saw her in a theatre production in which she played three lead roles. Marteno Minich plays several lead characters, although each only appears in a couple of units. He'll be most busy playing a man from Bratislava; fortunately for him, that won't be difficult; it's his home town.

Every unit ends with listening exercises and so the artists will need to voice them too. With the exception of one exercise, these are one-off activities with no connection to characters in the story. The actors will still have to pull off various accents, though!

Here are some statistics:

  • There are 18 units in the book. Each unit has two conversations, plus activities at the end.
  • The script for the audio is 246 pages long!
  • There are 27 characters who appear in the main conversations. Some of them only have a single line but others have dozens, maybe hundreds.
  • There are 43 different characters speaking in the non-storyline end-of-unit listening exercises.

Somehow the voice artists have to pull in all this in a single working day in the studios in London tomorrow. Wish them luck!

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