Done well, the preparation for the description of a show takes 40-50 hours. To do this, our process involves:
viewing the shows 3-5 times
scripting for 8-15 hours
a planned showtime
final viewing & tuning-up
studying the script & soundtrack
How do we select a describer?
Our selection process starts with a formal audition process after we put the word out. Then, we provide a standard written text and solicit audiotape or CD submissions. From these, we evaluate voice quality, clarity, and articulation. In addition to this, we also consider prior performing experiences, evaluate creative writing sample, and then select a group for training.
A describer is a person who:
has a clear & pleasant voice
is able to focus on essential elements in a complex visual field
has good observation skills
is verbally creative
is able to distill efficient verbal images
is dedicated and well-trained
WHAT MAKES A GOOD DESCRIBER?
A good describer starts with a well-crafted script that:
is based on Careful Prior Observation
is built around the actor's script
is interwoven with the actors' speaking & singing
timing is everything
dialogue is never overridden unless necessary to convey essential actions
it is honed to balance content with available timing