Entertainment

Alicyn Packard is Taking Hollywood by Storm

Alicyn Packard was born just outside of Boston, MA, and has been performing all her life. After graduating college Alicyn moved to Los Angeles and began her career as one of the most sought-after voiceover artists in Hollywood. Starting with her first series for Cartoon Network where she voiced 3 series regular characters on The Mr. Men Show, she went on to voice characters on such shows as The Tom and Jerry Show, Rugrats,Yokai Watch, Space Racers, and Man with a Plan just to name a few. Branching into the Video Game Genre, Alicyn’s talent can be heard as Chef Tulio in the award-winning Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, Minnie Ambrose in Outer Worlds: Peril on Gorgon and TIE Fighter Pilot in Star Wars: Squadrons. Upcoming projects include  Transformers: Beyond Reality, a new VR game for PlayStation and PC and the Neon White video game by Annapurna. National brand campaigns for Clif Bar, Constant Contact, and Ameriprise to name a few, have also utilized the unique voice of this talented artist. Alicyn can also be heard as Cris on season 2 of It’s Pony where she plays Bobby Moynihan’s sister. As a writer, this multi-hyphenate artist is a member of the WGA Animation Caucus and has written for such shows as Barbie: Dreamtopia and Poppy Cat. She hosts and produces a weekly interview show and podcast entitled Alicyn’s Wonderland in which she interviews some of the biggest talents working in animation and games. Alicyn’s talents have not gone unnoticed in the industry which has nominated her for three Voice Arts Awards for excellence in voiceover, and a BTVA Award for Best Female Lead Vocal Performance. When not working, Alicyn enjoys doing Acro Yoga and taking her adorable travel trailer to National and State parks with her husband and son.

HI! THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME TO CHAT WITH US! CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOURSELF, WHO IS ALICYN PACKARD IN YOUR OWN WORDS?  
You’re so welcome! Well, I originally grew up in a small town on the South Shore of Boston. I was the type of kid that wanted to not just act in a play, but write it, direct it and cast the neighborhood kids. We’d make our own sets, design costumes and put up the show in our backyard. So basically nothing has changed. Today I’ve turned my passions into a career as a voice actress for TV, film and video games while also producing and hosting a video podcast for my YouTube Channel called Alicyn’s Wonderland, where I share weekly episodes interviewing some of the top talent in the animation and video game world. It’s a wild world collaborating with fun and funny folks and I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN VOICE ACTING AND DECIDE TO PURSUE IT PROFESSIONALLY?
I can trace the roots of voice acting back to my very first performance in the first grade starring as Gretel in the play Hansel and Gretel (Thanks Mrs. Lewis… I owe you one!). I always gravitated toward acting and had some early experiences like my school’s radio club where doing the morning announcements gave me on mic experience. I did a lot of oratorical essay competitions and had a natural gravitas to my voice, which later lent itself to voicing commercials. After moving to LA I trained extensively in voice acting for many years to increase my vocal versatility and learn how to develop unique characters by changing up my vocal patterns to suit the role. 

YOU’VE LENT YOUR VOICE TO A NUMBER OF SHOWS; WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE?Ahh… that’s like asking me to pick my favorite kid! Fortunately I only have one child so I never have to make THAT call! I will say that Rugrats has a very special place in my heart. Growing up in the 90’s, Rugrats was my favorite show on TV and my sister and I were huge Nick Nerds. We watched Doug, Double Dare… all the classics, and we’d pretend to slime each other on commercial breaks. Getting slimed some day is definitely high up on my Bucket List! So finding out that I got cast to play Josh on the new Rugrats reboot has been a dream come true. He’s a larger than life playground bully who appears tough until confronted, so there’s plenty of room to play with the comedy. The scripts are hilarious and they even let us improvise a bit so I honestly couldn’t ask for a better experience. The role was originally voiced by the incredible actress, Dana Hill, who sadly passed away before her time. Certainly Josh had BIG shoes to fill and I was really hoping that I could live up to Dana’s amazing legacy! I posted some behind the scenes clips of me voice acting as Josh’s voice and the videos went viral on Tiktok amassing over 5 million views! It brings me such joy to know that fans are resonating with him and I hope to honor Dana in my performance.

Image Credit: Cathryn Farnsworth

DO YOU HAVE A PREFERRED STYLE OF VOICE ACTING, OR DO YOU TAKE WHATEVER COMES YOUR WAY?
Each facet of voice acting has unique challenges and creative approaches, so I find it incredibly rewarding to be lucky enough to work in multiple areas. If I had to choose I would say my favorite is voicing original characters for animation and video games. To go even further with that, the best voice acting experience is being in an ensemble record, which is when all the voice actors perform together in the same room. We don’t always get that luxury, but when we do, it’s absolute magic. Nothing pulls you more into the moment or results in more spontaneous humor. It’s also an absolute blast!

HOW DO YOU BUILD A CHARACTER SOLELY THROUGH THE USE OF YOUR VOICE?
Believe it or not, with a lot of physicality! I often use improv, to build a character, exploring different vocal choices and acting choices until the character feels right. I might think through a scene, map out the environment or break down the comedy beats, from a mental space but then I try to let it all and just live authentically in the moment, reacting to the imagined experiences. And voice acting relies heavily on our imagination as we don’t have props or a set to help set the tone. Sometimes, we don’t even have the other actors! But once you’re fully immersed in the role, it’s great to bring movement and life to the read as well. You just have to make sure you’re dialing it in so you aren’t making any noise on the mic. 

TELL US ABOUT YOUR UPCOMING PROJECT, TRANSFORMERS: BEYOND REALITY.
Transformers: Beyond Reality is a new VR game for Playstation VR and Steam VR. I’m honestly THRILLED to be joining the Transformers universe, especially since my son is currently obsessed with his Transformers. I voice the autobot Windblade as well as a brand new character named Dr. Vandermeer, and the roles couldn’t be more different. Windblade is strong and confident and Vandermeer is a quirky scientist who gets giddy over her gear.  It was so fun bringing these roles to life and I can’t wait to see what the fans think of this new incarnation!

IN YOUR LATEST ANIMATED PROJECT IT’S PONY YOU PLAY BOBBY MOYNIHAN’S OLDER SISTER. TELL US ABOUT YOUR ROLE AND WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO WORK WITH BOBBY. 
I love playing Chris, she’s absolutely hilarious! She has a bit of an anger management problem and can get completely unhinged. I really got to go there and make BIG choices with Chris. The writers on the show are brilliant, and the voice director was Emmy award winning Meredith Layne, who helped guide me to the perfect balance with Chris’ temper. Sadly, we recorded during lockdown, so like many animated projects in the past few years, this was all done remotely from my home studio. So that’s a great testament to Meredith that their performances blend so seamlessly, you would never know we recorded from thousands of miles apart. 

VR AND VIDEO GAMES ARE TWO OF YOUR FORTHCOMING PROJECTS. HOW WILL THOSE GAMES MAKE USE OF YOUR VOICE?
We already discussed Transformers: Beyond Reality, but I’m also voicing the female lead in the upcoming Annapurna game, Neon White. My character, Neon Red is one of my favorite roles I’ve ever played. Vocally, her tone is similar to my regular voice print, but she’s just incredibly sexy, confident and an all around badass. I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to bring Neon Red to life and from the moment I got the audition I said, “this one’s mine!” I just felt I understood Red on another level. There’s already been a ton of buzz online, so I’m curious to see what the reaction will be once the game is released. This was a role I could really sink my teeth into and I’m so grateful to game creator Ben Esposito and producer Geneva Hodgson for also feeling like I was the best fit. I just feel we need to see even more of these characters!

WHAT IS ONE MESSAGE THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO GIVE TO YOUR FANS?
First off, I feel beyond blessed to have the opportunity to inspire you in any way, so thank you! My life has not been without struggle, so if you’re currently in a difficult place, know that you’re not alone. I truly believe that when we work every day to continually craft the best version of ourselves, we are rewarded with a beautiful life that will suit you perfectly. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want and make time for what most fuels you up. Those passions are the glue that hold your life together, and may even become a career path in the future. So carve out time for creativity, play and fun. It’s the fuel your life runs on. 

10. WHERE CAN OUR READERS FIND YOU ONLINE?

YouTube, youtube.com/alicynswonderland 
I’m also on TikTok: @alicynpackard
Instagram: @alicyn
Twitter: @alicyn (It helps having a uniquely spelled name!)

G Gulati

G Gulati is an Author, Celebrity Interviewer, Global Personal Branding & Brand Engagement Consultant known for his experience and ability to help individuals build head-turning brands that attract opportunities. Gulati has authored 5 books, and his idea of a fun day is writing, listening to audible books and decoding personal brands through interviews and polls.

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