Voice actor Dino Andrade took a moment out of his busy day to speak with me about how he got into voice acting, why he loves what he does, and how all of his geekness inspired SoulGeek.com, the online dating site just for geeks! Check out the interview now, then head to SoulGeek.com and sign up to find love!
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Tell me a little bit about what you do as a voice actor?
Well, as a voice actor I’ve been the Scarecrow in ‘Batman Arkham asylum’ – You’re in my arkham now, Batman – I’m also Mimiron, Mekkatorque, Professor Putricide, The Death Gnomes, all of those folks from World of Warcraft. I was in Call of Duty: Brutal Legend. Good lord, a Pocket god. I’ve been Pop for Rice Crispies – Snap Crackle Pop Rice Crispies – I’ve just done tons and tons of stuff and I keep working all the time. I just did a new feature called Champions of Oz, where I played the Tin Man. Which is really fun, ’cause I’ve played the Scarecrow, now I’ve played Tin Man, now I’ve just gotta play a lion then I’ll have the whole holy trinity. I did a web series called ’16-Bit High School’ that’s premiering this year, I did a game called Battle Dodgers I’m hoping is gunna come out soon. I’m just a very busy guy.
What do you prefer to do, animated films or video games – what’s your preference?
My preference is to do basically anything that is original. I mean, I also do the occasional anime show, like I’ve been in Hellsing. I’ve died a lot in Hellsing. I did the latest, I did The Colonel – What is going on here? / It’s a very good day for Vampires – I prefer to do original animation because I get to play and just create new stuff, whereas with anime you’re locked into a performance that was already created. The animation is already done and we’re having to match the lip flap and so on, which is quite a challenge. But I’m someone who is both Meisner trained and trained at the Groundlings, I’m very improv oriented and I just love working on original animation. Whether it’s for a web series or a game or a feature for TV series, I don’t really care. I just love doing original work.
Speaking of your training, how did you get into voice acting?
Through porn. No, I’m kidding!
I studied first as an actor, I was with the Groundlings quite a long time ago. Lisa Kudrow was in the main company at the time. I was trained by Mindy Sterling… I then got into studying the various voice disciplines, commercial workshops, animation workshops and working my way up from there. Getting demos made, pounding the pavement, getting an agent. I worked for it basically.
And now you’re doing Soul Geek?
That is the other side of it. I’m the creator & founder of Soul Geek .com.
One of the things about me is that I’m a huge geek. I’m a huge fan of sci-fi, horror, fantasy, animation. This is why, this is why I wanted to get into voice acting to begin with, because I love great works of imagination and I wanted to be part of it. And this is how I got into it. SoulGeek was in many ways an extension of that.
I was married to a voice actress Mary Kay Bergman, who was one of the top 5 women in all of animation. When she passed away in 1999 we had been married for 10 years. And we shared a love of great works of imagination. We had star fleet uniforms, we collected comic books and animation cells. We were more than husband and wife, we were best friends. And when I lost her, I lost my best friend. It took about 5 years for me to get back on my feet and I ran into, of all people, my old high school sweet heart. We hadn’t seen each other in 26 years. She helped mend a shattered heart and it was the two of us who decided, you know what, to make something good come out of tragedy let’s do something awesome. And we created Sou Geek .com and proudly we have brought geeks together, thousands of them. We are responsible for 20 geek weddings. The 20th between soul geek members [Randomscraps and Spectrum] happened today. It was just a way of doing something of the heart and make something good come out of tragedy, that it was all part of this geekdom that I have been apart of. I love sci-fi, horror, fantasy, animation, anime, manga, conventions, cosplay, collectables, film scores, fan groups, fan art, fan fiction, I love it all. Like Tim Russ who was Tuvok on Star Trek: Voyager who said, basically I’m just a geek who made it. That’s me.
I don’t do voice work becuase, “well it’ll pay the bills for now but someday I want to be on Broadway”. No, this is what I wanted to do. I’m living the dream. There’s been, obviously, ups and downs in my life. But I love life and I love my geekdom. And I celebrate it through my work and through bringing geeks together on Soul Geek .com.
Check out SoulGeek.com for yourself!