Community//

Christie Cate: “Meet every agent you can”

I have developed a routine where I practice gratitude. Honestly, one of the biggest shifts in my life and career, was when I started taking a few minutes of the day to practice gratitude. I had read a wonderful article that explained how your brain is wired to respond in trends. For example, if you […]

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

I have developed a routine where I practice gratitude. Honestly, one of the biggest shifts in my life and career, was when I started taking a few minutes of the day to practice gratitude. I had read a wonderful article that explained how your brain is wired to respond in trends. For example, if you keep having positive thoughts, the first thing that you will think of when something bad happens is something positive that can come out of the situation. By thinking about something positive, you can come up with creative solutions to problems instead of being mired in negativity.


As a part of our interview series with the rising stars in pop culture, I had the pleasure of interviewing Christie Cate.

“Once you begin to shine, the unfeasible becomes the inevitable,” is the mantra that Christie lives by. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Christie was always interested in acting. She started pursuing voice over in 2011 and has now booked national commercials, interactive characters, and promos through her agents at A3 Artists.


Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

When I graduated high school I had started to pursue on-camera acting, but at the time, I wasn’t having as much fun doing that as I had hoped. Then one day, I was working background on set, and a fellow extra shared he was taking voice over classes at the Voicecaster and loved it. I signed up, and found out that this career path was aligned with what I really wanted to do, especially since I have always been a fan of animation and video games.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career?

I signed with two different LA agents without ever booking a single voice over job on my own. Typically, the catch 22 is that agents won’t meet with you without bookings, but it’s hard to find bookings without an agent. In my case, my commercial demo was strong enough to get me into the door, and my live audition was able to get me signed. Conversely, at the time, I had a friend that was booking a ton of anime work on her own, but was struggling to get an agent. Evidently, no two paths are the same.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I spent thousands of dollars on two different voice over demos that were not that great. The first one was from a reputable casting agency, but the completed demo didn’t sound authentic to myself. With the second one, I had grown as a performer, but the demo itself was outdated with the scripts and production style. After that, I contemplated making my demo with a very popular demo producer in town, but I didn’t feel like our personalities clicked. I searched further and eventually made the “winning” demo with Bill Holmes over at the voiceoverdoctor.com. While his demo was more expensive than the others, it would have saved me thousands of dollars had I just gone with someone more vetted in the industry from the start.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I’m grateful that this year I voiced a promo for a Cartoon Network show. I have always wanted to be an image voice for a kids network, so I feel proud that I have now voiced a spot for all three of the major kids networks. This year a few video games that I worked have been released which is always exciting. I love watching the cutscenes from completed games.

Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with? What was that like? Do you have any stories?

I had a callback audition at Nickelodeon a few years ago for a gameshow, and the lovely Dee Bradley Baker said, “Hi” to me. I was awe struck, since this man has been in tons of shows that I love including Avatar: The Last Airbender. Dee kindly asked what I was going to read for that day, and I told him, that it was for a game show host. He then shared how he used to be Olmec in Legends of the Hidden Temple, and how it was challenging navigating that puppet. He made me feel a little less nervous, and his sentiments of good luck, must have payed off, cause I booked the job — Watch Your Words, an Alexa skill from Nickelodeon.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

I actually never started on any pay-to-play sites, because I knew if I did, I would burn out before I even started forming a career. Instead, I have always found a support group. In the beginning of my career it was a voice over workout group, and more recently it’s been an on-camera acting class. It’s always great to surround yourself with other performers whom might be sharing the same frustrations that can cause burnout. The other advice, which is on the opposite end of the spectrum is knowing that it’s okay to take a break, and allow your mental health to heal with a relaxing or fun day.

You have been blessed with success in a career path that can be challenging. Do you have any words of advice for others who may want to embark on this career path, but seem daunted by the prospect of failure?

Always remember it’s a marathon not a sprint. Whenever I feel like I’m at a stuck point, I have to stop and remind myself. Where was I in my career a year ago? What about five years ago? In that sense, I can remind myself of the little successes along the way and to stop comparing my success to others and focus on having fun.

Can you share with our readers any self care routines, practices or treatments that you do to help your body, mind or heart to thrive? Kindly share a story or an example for each.

I have developed a routine where I practice gratitude. Honestly, one of the biggest shifts in my life and career, was when I started taking a few minutes of the day to practice gratitude. I had read a wonderful article that explained how your brain is wired to respond in trends. For example, if you keep having positive thoughts, the first thing that you will think of when something bad happens is something positive that can come out of the situation. By thinking about something positive, you can come up with creative solutions to problems instead of being mired in negativity.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why? Please share a story or example for each.

  1. Meet every agent you can. An agent is not your boss, it’s a collaborative partnership. By meeting a bunch of people you can find the right team for you. Also agencies work differently, and some of them have procedures that might not click with you.
  2. Don’t meet every casting director ever. I know it sounds contrary because casting directors are ultimately going to get you in front of the people running the job. Instead, focus on building relationships with CD’s that you click with. Re-meet them until you they know you on a first name basis.
  3. Just because someone is a well renowned teacher, doesn’t mean they are the right teacher for you. I’ve taken classes where it harmed me more than it helped, because I did not jive with the coach. My favorite voice over class was with Richard Horvitz, because his motto is, “I am enough, because I am a human being.”
  4. Don’t focus on finding an agent or becoming Union. Focus on creating a network of friends and mentors. Your network will help you find ways to reach those goals when the timing is right.
  5. Spend wisely. Be picky about what you purchase. Make sure what you buy is going to benefit your career. For example, you might end up buying a mic twice because the first one was low quality. Have a strenuous session? Pay the money to see an ENT to prevent possible damage to your instrument.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

My mom always told me to “invest in yourself and the money will follow.” It was this advice that gave me the courage to spend money on a booth and a demo. At the time spending thousands of dollars without much of a career was scary, but once you book that first big spot, it will pay for itself and then some.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I’m incredibly grateful for Roger Leopardi and Tim Friedlander. Tim had and still continues to host a successful VO workout group. It was at one if these, where Roger Leopardi had come as a guest. Roger is a master at both promo and commercial voice over and he gave me incredible advice — if you’re going to market yourself as a professional voice over talent commercially — you need to have a professional home setup (in his case it was treated closet, for me that manifested in a booth I bought off craigslist). He also helped me transition from a starter agency, to the one I now call home — A3 Artists.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I registered the domain worldstoryteller.org because I eventually want to create a website where people getting started in voice over can record voice over’s for nonprofits. I would set it up as a scholarship. The selected read would receive various studio supplies and resources that could help in their career.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. 🙂

I would love to pitch animated show concepts to Disney, Comedy Central, Netflix, and Adult Swim so if anyone has a connection, feel free to reach out.

How can our readers follow you online?

I’m on Instagram and Twitter @christiecatevo

Additionally, I have a podcast on Youtube called Inside the Voice Actor’s Booth where I interview fellow voice actors.

For professional inquiries, feel free to check out my website at christiecate.com

Thank you so much for joining us. This was very inspirational!

Thank you! — Christie


    Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

    You might also like...

    Community//

    “Know your purpose.” with Christie Lawler

    by Jason Hartman
    Community//

    Christie Smith: “Human beings are very resilient”

    by Ben Ari
    Alex Nieora
    Community//

    Alex Nieora Speaks About Positive Lifestyle Choices & Focusing on Your Own Narrative

    by Joey Claudio

    Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

    Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

    Thrive Global
    People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

    - MARCUS AURELIUS

    We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.