Since a long time ago, my friend Sophia Cruz has been saying it. I had my doubts, until all of a sudden I felt like right in front of my eyes the giant started to wake up: in many voiceover conferences, highly rated artists like Christian Lanz and Sylvia Villagrán started to say it out loud, followed by Simone Fojgiel and many others. So I decided to look for the data to make sure. So from what I found, SPANISH VOICEOVER HAS A PROMISING FUTURE.
Herein some statistics
According to Cervante’s Institute:
More than 480 million people have Spanish as a Mother Tongue.
Amongst Students, Native and users with limited proficiency, there are 577 million Spanish speakers and/or learners.
Spanish is the second most spoken language (by number of native speakers) after Chinese Mandarin.
In USA, Spanish is the most studied language in all learning levels.
UK perceives Spanish as the most important language in the future.
According to Wikipedia (2017 information)
Spanish in the United States is the second most spoken language in 43 States.
New Mexico is one of the few states where Spanish speakers have formed uninterrupted communities since they came to the US and big part of the institutions use both languages (English and Spanish) in the government’s websites, including FBI, Medicare, National library of medicine and others.
The states that speak more Spanish at home (besides Puerto Rico with 94%), are Texas and California (close to 30%), then comes New Mexico (28%), Nevada, Florida and Arizona (more than 20%), New Jersey and New York (more than 15%) and Illinois (more than 13%).
And to add the cherry on top of the pie:
Only Mexico has more Spanish Speaking inhabitants than USA, and some statistics predict that by 2050, the US will have more Spanish Speakers than Mexico, according to the Spanish Language Observatory & Hispanic Cultures of the United States.
Well for me, the numbers speak for themselves. I grew up studying English to expand my commercial frontiers and now, I’m witnessing an amazing amount of English speakers learning my mother tongue. Spanish has become “cool”.
I’m finally feeling the Hispanic empowerment in the big companies decision making processes; having great consideration about Latin America: territory that represents huge commercial growth expectations.
In the US there seems to be an inclination in the advertising world, to include in the general market agencies, a Spanish department.
And what’s more interesting, there has been the case where a Hispanic advertising agency acquired an important English speaking one.
The world has globalized, opportunities multiply and these are hopeful times for Hispanic voice actors, especially because of the fact that technology has become quite friendly with remote recordings.
Also, it’s fascinating that nowadays very renowned voiceover talents, such as Dave Fennoy, mention that they’re dubbing into English, content originally created in Spanish.
We’re now facing a historical moment: for the first time, Voice Over talent are starting to have a voice of their own, we talk for ourselves and in between us. Nowadays the brands or the media are not the only ones that have a voice on their own. Now, each person has something to say, which makes him or her a “media” on his or her own.
Spanish Voice Overs are getting together as a single voice. That unity can be perceived in every corner. It started by Spanish speaking conferences or Spanish chapters of English voiceover conferences, like Atlanta, followed by Voicemasters Mexico, That’s Voiceover in LA, GFTB Latam, VivaVoz Colombia, The Voiceover Network in London and, everyday, more and more initiatives that promote Spanish speaking communities to celebrate our language and invite us to enrich it with the tones and quirks from each particular nation; but also to honor our profession and generate value in each part of the production chain.
That is, establishing good practices that protect all markets and production people, improve the quality and the service we provide, creating new niches, but especially LEARNING HOW TO SWIM IN THE SAME POND.
Proof of it, is the huge success that Colombian Association of Voice Overs (ACL) is having, now that there’s a new progressive executive board, where people are sharing at their best.
Every day there are more seminars, meetings, awards, events, hard work to create wellness for the community.
Many options for our voice to be echoed in the voiceover work field.
Also, it’s amazing to observe the huge receptivity from the international community. Great voiceover teachers and coaches are trying to make other languages content, accessible to the Spanish speaking community.
The Voiceover Buzz Magazine, from The Voiceover Network already created a Spanish magazine that has the same content as the English one and now it’s present in most Spanish Speaking Voiceover events.
I still don’t know what’s cooking, but there’s something evident: Spanish is now “fashionable” and everything points out as if it will remain on the long term.