Ragged Foils' Voice Over Advent Calendar 2019

This festive season, whilst things are dark and we're waiting for applications to roll in for the Ragged Scratch Podcast Season 2 (see more here!), we thought we'd have a little fun and run a Voice Over Advent Calendar challenge - with our founder Natalie Winter releasing a short voice over clip every day that's somehow related to Christmas or the festive season!

If you'd like to keep track of her progress you can follow her across Twitter and Instagram, and to join in yourself here's everything you need to know:

The Idea

The Guide

  • All the daily cues can be found below, along with ideas and script suggestions

  • Each day post a clip of your voice responding to that day's cue (either audio only or video is fine, but if it's audio-only, why not get fancy and use our pre-made social media graphics templates to create snazzy audiograms?)

  • Clips should be 20 seconds maximum (other people are more likely to listen if they're short and snappy!)

  • You don’t need to add sfx and music, but you can if you like!

  • If you can’t do every day, don’t sweat it! Do one a week, or every couple of days. Maybe bundle a few together. These are just guidelines.

  • Include the hashtag #RaggedAdvent and tag us @RaggedFoils across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram if you want us to share your entries, and go and give some love to other actors taking part on the hashtags!

  • We'd love to see you spread your creative wings even further and write your own scripts for each cue, but if you don't have time or get stuck, Natalie's scripts are in the same folder as the graphics templates here and you can use them!

  • With your permission, we'll collect some of our favourites into a special Ragged Scratch Podcast bonus episode for everyone involved to share

  • If you'd like to give Natalie some love for organising this, you can always donate a to our Patreon, which helps cover the costs for the Ragged Scratch Podcast. We're hoping to be able to cover travel expenses (at least) for all the creatives involved this season and would love your help to achieve that goal!

The Cues

December 1: Commercial - Fun

Channel your inner John Lewis - this could be for a kid’s toy, a festive experience, maybe even a forced commercial for a product that isn’t Christmassy at all!

December 2: Character - Monster

Alright, Grinch, if this festive malarky is getting too much for you then let it all out today! Show us your goblins, witches, Krampuses and monsters under the bed. Look to Nightmare Before Christmas for inspiration if you’re stuck!

December 3: Gaming - Questgiver

You need 5 of those festive maguffins, and you need them NOW, dangit! Your only purpose in this world is to give the player more opportunity to gain XP and money, and nothing will happen if they don’t do this quest, but you have a complex backstory and weird character traits regardless.

December 4th: Corporate - Silly Statistics

Make up some festive statistics (although make sure they’re noticeably fake, let’s not accidentally incite Internet outrage...) and present them as approachably as you can. You know, as if you were chatting to your mate down the pub...

December 5th: Character - Pantomime Villain

Bring your best maniacal laugh, melodramatic plotting and sinister schemes and imagine the audience’s boos in the background!

December 6th: Documentary - Serious 

Think ambulance services overrun, stories about food-bank usage, high streets struggling with the uptake in online shopping, or even do a parody one about over-worked elves, stressed-out reindeer, or Santa’s struggle with alcoholism after having to drink a glass of sherry at every home he visits!

December 7th: Character - Song

Little scarier, I know, but if you aren’t a singer then channel Rex Harrison and turn a popular Christmas pop song or Carol into a dramatic monologue! Alternatives: do it as a celebrity impersonation, mashup styles (Little Drummer Boy as Mariah Carey, Jingle Bell Rock as The Pogues), or pick another character voice in your repertoire and sing a festive hit as them!

December 8th: Gaming - Audiolog

You know the trope, the player character comes across an audiolog of a missing, probably dead scientist or maintenance worker on a spaceship, the research notes of an academic that goes insane, the final answerphone message to a loved one that ends in the thing attacking. Give us exposition, suspense, doubt, regrets, but make it festive!


December 9th: Character - 12 Days of Christmas  

Easier - Drummers Drumming, Pipers Piping, Lords a-leaping, Ladies Dancing, Maids a Milking.

Harder - Swans a-swimming, Geese a-laying, Calling birds, French Hens, Turtle Doves, The Partridge.

Expert level - 5 Gold Rings. 


December 10th: Documentary - Charity Fundraiser 

Think Crisis, Centrepoint, RPSCC, Greenpeace - how would the communities they help be affected this month? (Bonus points if you donate to said charity!)


December 11th: Character - Cracker Joke

Choose a character voice or celebrity impersonation you love to do and show it off by getting them to read a Christmas Cracker joke. How do they do it? Do they find it funny? Would they laugh? Would they cringe?

December 12th: Documentary - Newsreader

Present the headlines, or focus on one particular story. Go serious or comical, real or imagined. It’s Election Day, so maybe that will play into it!

December 13th: Character - Panto Hero

Get your Dick Whittingtons out and slap those thighs (but don’t knock the mic!) with the unflinchingly positive can-do attitude of a Pantomime Principal Boy or Girl (other options: Cinderella, Aladdin, Snow White, Sinbad, Peter Pan, Sleeping Beauty or any leading fairytale character! Bonus points for acknowledging how problematic most of these characters are nowadays…)


December 14th: Audiobook - Adult

Well, not adult adult. Just one not aimed at children. Focus on a character journey, an inner monologue, or some action, the more it relates to Christmas, or other seasonal holidays, the better.


December 15th: Character - Reindeer

Well you’ve heard of Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, there’s also Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen, and of course the most famous Reindeer of all, Rudolph. Pick one and run (or fly!) with it!


December 16th: Corporate - Jolly Jargon

Find the most tongue-twistery of technical or medical jargon, magic them up a bit. Bonus points for recording this one after a couple of sherries and a mouthful of pigs in blankets (or halloumi wrapped in aubergine for the veggies amongst us!)


December 17th: Gaming - Inspirational Leader Speech

Rally the troops with an inspirational speech. Are you Head Elf, preparing presents for delivery? Getting ready for battle against the dark forces of Krampus? Or even a shop manager readying the team as they open up on Boxing day!


December 18th: Character - Panto Comedy

Pick one of the other comedy panto characters - could be the Dame, the lovable Sidekick, the wise Fairy or the slightly absentminded King and introduce yourself!


December 19th: Commercial - Serious Drama

Think Eastenders Xmas Special, all your gritty festive dramas for those who want a bit of relief from permanent cheer!


December 20th: Audiobook - Descriptive

This could be from a book or any other piece of narrative description, but paint us a picture with words. Is it a beautiful, cosy scene? Are there frosty and twinkling snow-covered chalets? Or is it a bleak mountainscape with little life?


December 21st: Corporate - Seasonal Opening Hours IVR

Professionally sympathetic, it’s your job to tell the customer that the shop is now closed. No, they can’t get that last present at 11.59pm on the 24th December. It’s too late.


December 22nd: Gaming - Barks

Face down your foes with your cheesiest battle cries, festive quips and one-liners! Give us at least 5. (‘Heeeeere’s SANTA!,’ ‘Ho Ho HOLD IT RIGHT THERE!,’ ‘Time to face my MisteFOE!’)


December 23rd: Character - Santa/Mrs Claus

Just a simple, warm and happy Christmas message from the Big Guy, or the hardest working, rarely credited (and unnamed!) woman in the world


December 24th: Children’s Bedtime

Pick a snippet from a classic, cosy children’s book or poem, preferably festive, and put the kids to bed before the big day!


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