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So you want to be a hockey broadcaster...
Published July 1, 2017 / by Brock Ormond
If you answered yes maybe I can help.
Have you ever said to yourself, where do I begin? what does it take to be a hockey broadcaster? will it be difficult to get work? ...I'm guessing you have or you probably wouldn't be reading this post.
I bet you've now gone from talking to yourself to thinking out loud wondering...What can he tell me about broadcasting and Why should I listen. It's because I've been where you are and I used to ask myself the same questions. I don't claim to be an expert by any means but I can tell you that I'm still young and I've figured it out.
Let me start by saying, I won't sugar coat it, it's not easy but it is possible. I bet you thought I was going to give with Steps 1, 2, and 3...no that will come later. Let's start first by asking yourself some tough questions and please be honest with yourself.
1. How bad do I want to be a broadcaster?
2. Why do I want to be a broadcaster?
3. Am I wanting to become a broadcaster for the right reasons?
4. Do I have goals in becoming a broadcaster?
5. Can I give three of the wrong reasons to become a broadcaster?
There are many other questions to ask yourself but this is a place to start as this isn't a book I'm writing, (although that's in the works) back to the topic of broadcasting. These questions are important to ask yourself because I can tell you ...it's going to take work, hard work, so be sure you're doing it for the right reasons, because you love it and want it bad enough. Because if you do you can make it happen. Remember...I wouldn't be telling you this if I hadn't already been there myself.
Now I think you're ready to hear those Steps I promised you.
Ask yourself 50 questions about becoming a broadcaster. If you can do that move on to step 2. That means you have put enough thought into determining if this is something you really want to do or just a passing phase.
Look for any opportunity to practice your craft. How you ask...find a hockey game on the TV, go ahead and press mute. I know I know, Jim Hughson's a great play-by-play broadcaster but this is your time. Follow the game and call the play-by-play. Try one period and work your way up to calling a whole game. If you're comfortable enough by the time you get to the second period tape yourself and listen back. Critique yourself on where you sounded good and where you want to improve. I bet you know what I'm going to say next....yes your right.....repeat step 2 again, and again, and again. By now you may need a change of scenary. Go to a near by arena and find yourself a space in a corner of the arena somewhere and call the game live. Tape it on your phone...everybody has one of those now days don't they. The point of step 2 is, to practice, practice, practice and it doesn't matter where.
Be yourself! Find your own style. It's nice to listen to a play-by-play broadcaster that you admire but don't try and be them. Find your own voice, your own sound and your own delivery that is uniquely yours. You don't need to scream/beller/holler as that doesn't make for good broadcasting.
Do your research and be prepared. I can't stress this point enough. Have you ever heard the phrase, 'silence is golden'...except for when you're a play-by-play broadcaster. People want to know what's happening on the ice. They want the sound of the game to flow so learn to paint a picture for your audience.
Take your show on the road. Yes I know, this can be a scary step. Your not starting in the NHL....but every broadcaster started somewhere. Be willing to volunteer your time and take any opportunity to broadcast. Volunteering is the best way to gain experience. With more experience the better you'll get and you may just catch someone's ear. You never know who's listening. If you're good enough and willing to volunteer chances are someone will be willing to pay you at some point.
I bet you're now asking me the big question...did I follow Steps 1 to 5? and the answer is...yes I did.
Here's a short refresher...ask 50 questions, practice, practice, practice, be yourself, do your research/be prepared, take your show on the road/volunteer/and you may catch someones ear. Good luck in your journey in becoming a play-by-play broadcaster.
If you're interested in learning more on the subject of becoming a play-by-play broadcaster, subscribe or contact me today!