Voice-over classes for senior citizens – it’s a brilliant idea. Literally.
Debbie Brilliant, 52, founded Brilliant Senior Voice-Overs earlier this year. Each week, Brilliant welcomes a small group of students aged 55 and older into her Upper East Side apartment. They pay $10 a session to recite tongue twisters, record mock radio and television commercials and listen to Brilliant’s professional feedback.
Voice-overs – scripted performances by unseen actors – are ideal for seniors: they require little movement and no memorization. And, Brilliant says, as the population ages more and more ads will be directed at the elderly.
“I’m no Nostradamus, but I predict seniors will be in demand for this type of work,” says Brilliant. “Who better to advertise to seniors than other seniors?”
Brilliant, a longtime singer and actress, performed voice-overs professionally for 10 years. Last fall, while volunteering at a Manhattan senior center, she started a free voice-over workshop for the elderly. So many seniors signed up for the class Brilliant needed a waiting list.
“I thought, hmm, maybe I have something here,” said Brilliant. “And that’s when I decided to turn it into a business.”
The first cohort of Brilliant-trained voice-over artists graduated this month. Brilliant’s next batch will meet at Jan Hus Presbyterian Church on East 74th Street.
Watch the video below to see her gray-haired, golden-voiced students in action!