Millions of people hear Mike Goral’s voice every day, and don’t even know it. He is not as instantly recognizable as Brad Pitt or Meryl Streep, but you likely know his work.
Goral is a voice actor who has worked with A&E, HBO, Showtime, Cartoon Network, Food Network, The Weather Channel, Discovery, HGTV, DIY, and many more. Now, he will be adding the Smithsonian Network to this extensive list with their new series Polar Bear Town, which he will be narrating.
Polar Bear Town is a documentary series about a community of people in Northern Manitoba, Canada that reside in a part of the continent where polar bears dwell at certain times of the year. People from all over the world travel to this remote community to get a close-up, in-person look at the mighty polar bear.
“I have been fascinated by Churchill, Manitoba for many years, so when I was approached to narrate this series, it was such a joy,” said Goral. “It’s a great production team too, which makes the job so much fun when you have great people around you.”
Goral is working under the supervision of Andy Blicq. Blicq is the post-production story editor on the documentary series made by Merit Motion Pictures for the Smithsonian Channel in the U.S.A. The two agree they make a dynamic team.
“Andy is a fantastic director and I feel we have a really great chemistry. I really enjoy working with him. He brings a lot to the table because he’s a true professional,” said Goral.
“Mike is a top tier narrator. He’s a professional who gets the work done quickly. He knows exactly what to do. He takes direction well and adapts quickly to suggestions when we are recording narration. It was a pleasure to work with him,” said Blicq. “Narration work is challenging. Each documentary series is different and a good voice actor brings his or her own creative talent to the production. Mike knows exactly what to do, adjusting his accent and performance to match the content and the emotion on the screen and the script. He executed this very well during the recording of the six one-hour episodes. We are going to work with him again, now, on a new season of this series.”
Goral is from Canada himself. He is originally from Oakville, Ontario, a town outside of Toronto. The project brought him back to his native country after living in Los Angeles and then Scottsdale where he currently resides. He has been voice acting for around twenty years.
“I service clients in all areas of the media industry with my voiceover services – everything from national TV shows, to product commercials, to corporate educational training courses for everything from banks to bakeries. I record most of my daily work from my own home studio facilities. But, some clients require I record at their studios instead of my own,” he described.
Goral does his work alone in a room, using only his voice to display the emotions that actors use their bodies, voices, scenery, props, and fellow actors for. It is no easy feat. The advantage, however, is that it is not quite as tiring.
“I don’t plan on retiring. The beauty of this kind of work is that it’s not physically taxing. Guys can do this type of work into their nineties,” said Goral. “And if they enjoy it like I do, they probably don’t really have plans to retire.”
Goral has a long time before he has to start thinking like that, and with more new episodes of Polar Bear Town ahead of him, he has a lot to look forward to.
“I’d love to do more long form documentary series. They are a lot of fun, and always a joy when those opportunities come around,” he said.
You can watch full episodes of Polar Bear Town here.