Think “Twilight” and you’ll probably conjure thoughts of Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner, the actors who bring the saga’s characters to life on the big screen.
But to readers who prefer the audio book versions of Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” novels, lyana Kadushin is as big a star as the aforementioned celebrities.
Big Hollywood checked in with Kadushin to find out more about being the voice of the “Twilight” audio book series and her various artistic projects.
Christian Toto: Your online bio recalls how you would narrate stories into a recorder as a child. Did your family embrace your artistic side? Did they suspect it would blossom into not just a hobby but a career?
Ilyana Kadusin: My family has always been incredibly supportive and inspired by my creative path, and I am very grateful. I think they always suspected and hoped, that with all the hours of singing, dancing and making up characters into the recorder, that it was destined to become a big part of my life.
Toto: How did your career as a voice over artist begin?
Kadushin: It really began when I started freelancing with an agent and was cast for commercials on television and radio. It progressed from there, when I was cast as the voice of Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. programming for the little ones. After this, I also started performing in video games, animation and audio book narrations.
Toto: What is the most challenging aspect of bringing a book to life with your voice, and how do you see yourself improving as a voice over artist?
Kadushin: Audio book narration is one of the most challenging and rewarding areas of voice performing. It is unique because what other acting job allows you to play every character in a story? This fact also makes it challenging, because you can relate to some characters and some not as well. Every narrator is giving their rendition of that story. The challenge is to always stay true to the author’s intent for their story. With every book I narrate I want to bring the story to life in a way that is entertaining and truthful.
Toto: What drew you to the “Twilight” assignment, and did doing the voice over work for the series give you a unique perspective on why these stories are so passionately embraced by readers?
Kadushin: In 2005, I was called in to audition for the “Twilight” audio book along with many other actresses. This was, of course, before anyone knew about these books at all. They were looking for a woman who could sound like a teenager and understand the character of Bella. It was actually the first audio book I was ever cast for. Since then, I have narrated the entire “Twilight” Saga audio books and it became this giant phenomenon. When I travel to book store signings, readings and events, I always ask the fans themselves what it was they loved so much about these stories. I think the paranormal romantic adventure without too much gratuitous sex and violence was something of a departure from the rest of pop culture that teens have around them.
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