Some museum provides cellphone application with a digital audio guide, when we click a certain collection, there is introduction of that objects. How to address the person who read the text? He or she is not actually an interpreter since he or she just read out what is provided by the museum curator. Maybe a dubber?

  • 4
    I suspect you mean describe rather than address. Feb 22, 2018 at 14:30
  • thank you. I misuse "address" as in "How should I address you", and thought "to address sb. " equals how to call/describe somebody doing a certain job/task/activity.
    – dasliit
    Feb 23, 2018 at 6:56

3 Answers 3


Such a museum guide, virtual or not, is normally referred to as a docent:

docent, n.: a person who is a knowledgeable guide, especially one who conducts visitors through a museum and delivers a commentary on the exhibitions.

  • 1
    OP asked specifically what to call the person reading the text - who may have no knowledge, if they’re simply hired to read the script. Feb 23, 2018 at 0:32

Update: a studio offering training for such artists refers to them thusly:

One of the most overlooked yet fertile career tracks for voice artists is the audio tour.

Audio tour voice over narrators are specialists in vocal inflection, timing and pacing – and they are highly sought after by producers and directors.

Original answer:

The person reading the text, while reading it, would typically be called the narrator (this is how Audible refer to them, for example).

Other, less specific terms include artist or performer.

In general you can use a variety of terms for the person or profession. Someone who also or usually performs more serious “dramatic” recording work might be a voice actor¹ or, in non-dramatic rôles, a voice-over artist:

From Oxford Living Dictionaries:

voice actor


A person whose job is to provide the voices for characters in animated films, dubbed foreign language films, audio dramas, etc.
‘when I arrived in Hollywood in after drama school, I hoped to find work as a voice actor’



A piece of narration in a film or broadcast, not accompanied by an image of the speaker.
‘the budget is summarized in a voice-over at the end of the news’
[mass noun] ‘the coordination of live voice-over, music, and slides’
[as modifier] ‘voice-over dialogue’

Narrate (spoken material) for a film or broadcast as a voice-over.
‘we had to voice-over some passages of dialogue’
‘the commercials are voice-overed’

¹ This is very likely not the answer you want unless that is their vocation, and they happen to be “performing” audio books as their regular job.

  • Oh do let us get into that"! As one of those people (the guy who says "tonight at 9:00" on a large television outlet) I prefer voice-over artist, despite a certain chagrin regarding the "artist" part. An actor impersonates or interprets another, while a v-o person/artist/speaker delivers lines in what is often an uncharacterized, generally objective tone. ("This comment was made possible by posters like you, and by...")
    – Rob_Ster
    Feb 22, 2018 at 16:25
  • Ah, I was trying to make that distinction but wanted to avoid any implied value judgement on my part (otherwise I'd have added another citation, but it was somewhat snobby in tone). Please feel free to edit, btw. Feb 22, 2018 at 16:29
  • Narrator properly refers specifically to someone that tells a narrative (story). Reader and speaker are more general terms that could be used.
    – David Eger
    Feb 23, 2018 at 0:29
  • In the context in question, I find the terms artist and performer inappropriate, since they suggest that the speaker is an attraction in their own right, not merely conveying information about the main attraction (i.e. the museum exhibits).
    – David Eger
    Feb 23, 2018 at 0:36
  • How so? If I get a portrait painted, I'm hardly going to avoid referring to the painter as artist in case it goes to their head ... Feb 23, 2018 at 0:48

In the specific case of a museum audio guide voice-over artist seems a bit grandiose. Even narrator sounds a bit pompous. I have heard just the words "voice-over", as in 'the voice-over says it dates from the 18th century'.

  • 1
    OP asked for a name for the person doing the “voice-over”, ... i.e. the voice-over artist. Feb 23, 2018 at 0:33

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