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Spotlight on popular narrators

Golden Voice Award Audiobook Narrator
Jay O. Sanders

Jay O. Sanders

Jay O. Sanders
Jay O. Sanders

Recent audiobooks

Jay's Accolades

My Losing Season  AudioFile Best of 2003 Biography & Memoir


Talking with Jay O. Sanders

Fall 2015: Jay's show UNEXPLORED INTERIOR scheduled for world premier at Washington DC's Mosaic Theater. 

Mosaic Theater launches its inaugural season with a world-premiere epic about the madness and majesty of Rwanda. Raymond, a film student at NYU enthralled with the mysteries of Alfred Hitchcock, is compelled by a mentor's death to return to Rwanda to uncover a deeper horror story: the roots of violence that have destroyed his family, including his beloved grandfather, a Tutsi master storyteller whose legacy Raymond seeks to redeem. The ghosts of King Leopold and Mark Twain intertwine with other plot lines Raymond pursues as a Hutu government minister falls in love with a Tutsi woman and the head of UN peacekeepers, haunted by those he was unable to save, struggles with his own will to live. Staged by Derek Goldman (OUR CLASS, IN DARFUR), this production takes place in the 260-seat Lang Theatre.

Jay O. Sanders has spent the last 40 years as an actor. After graduating with the first theater class of S.U.N.Y. at Purchase, he began his career at NY’s Shakespeare in the Park, then joined the resident company here in D.C. at Arena Stage under Zelda Fichandler. Moving regularly between film, tv, and voice work, Sanders’ central passion has always been the theater. He has played many of the great roles in Shakespeare and other classics and has devoted much of his time to birthing new American plays. He is an original cast member of Richard Nelson’s Apple Family series, created over the course of four years at the Public Theater, filmed for WNET in 2013, and recently toured Europe. Sanders has also travelled extensively with Bryan Doerries's Theater of War, taking Greek tragedy into U.S. military communities, as a tool for promoting healing dialogue about PTSD. His feature films include THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, HALF NELSON, JFK, EDGE OF DARKNESS, TUMBLEWEEDS, GLORY and ANGELS IN THE OUTFIELD.  On television, he recently appeared as tv evangelist Billy Lee Tuttle on the first season of HBO’s cult hit TRUE DETECTIVE and had recurring roles on PERSON OF INTEREST, AMERICAN ODYSSEY, and this year’s BLIND SPOT. Sanders’ voice can be heard narrating a long list of documentaries for PBS and National Geographic. On May 11, 2014, UNEXPLORED INTERIOR was performed as a special concert reading to mark the 20-year Commemoration streamed live as a Google+ Hangout-on-Air from NYC’s Museum of Jewish Heritage to an audience of survivors and students at the Kigali Genocide Memorial in Rwanda with people watching online in ten other countries across the world.

December 2007:  Joseph Heller’s CATCH-22, W.E.B. Griffin’s THE HUNTERS, and doing the honors with Peter Jay Fernandez for James Patterson’s Cross highlight his audiobook year.

December 2006:  Jay’s stage and film work has kept him busy this year. He played George W. Bush in David Hare’s Stuff Happens at New York’s Public Theater, and his films Half Nelson and The Pleasure of Your Company are both out on the Indie circuit. He wrapped up a fifth season of public TV’s Wide Angle, and an episode on bird flu he narrated was nominated for an Emmy. Jay is set to record The Hunters, the new W.E.B. Griffin book from the presidential agent series.

December 2005:  Jay just wrapped up hosting the Emmy Award-winning TV series "Wide Angle" and has completed workshop productions of new plays with Vassar College's New York Stage and Film. Glad to be returning to audiobook narration, he has just recorded the new W.E.B. Griffin book Hostage and, with wife Mary Ann Plunkett, has recorded stories for a new children's Web site,

December 2004:  Jay continued narration for PBS’s Wide Angle and was part of a performance of “Likely Stories,” an AudioFile-sponsored live reading event. We missed hearing new audiobooks from Jay.

April 2002:  We follow Jay O. Sanders’s work in audiobooks closely because he’s one of AudioFile’s Golden Voice narrators. Helping at the Wavedancer/ Frank Muller fund-raiser, Jay rounded up many fellow narrators, Muller family members,and friends in a pre-benefit gathering. Jay told us about a recent project he enjoyed—a new collection of Stephen King’s stories, EVERYTHING’S EVENTUAL: FIVE DARK TALES with five readers including Jay, Oliver Platt, Boyd Gaines, Justin Lang, and Judith Ivey. Jay picks up an Earphones Award in this issue for PALE HORSE COMING, his second Stephen Hunter thriller. As he’s been busy with film and theater projects, we’re glad to hear Jay in the audiobook realm when he has the opportunity.

December 1997:  Jay O. Sanders has narrated more than twenty-five audiobooks over the last five years, including works by Greg Iles, Dean Koontz, Joyce Carol Oates, Tony Hillerman, William Gibson, and John Sanford , under the auspices of eight publishers. He continues to travel freely among films, theatre, television and audiobooks, having most recently opened in the films Kiss The Girls and The Matchmaker, guest-starred in the premiere episode of ABC’s controversial new series “Nothing Sacred,” and narrated the newly released Serpent’s Tooth by Faye Kellerman for Simon & Schuster. Despite having spent twenty years on and off Broadway and in regional theaters, performing everything from Shakespeare and Shaw to Shepard, Jay is best known for his roles in films and television productions, such as JFK, Angels In The Outfield, HBO’s Hostages (in which he played Terry Anderson), and for his appearances on “Roseanne” as Dan’s biker buddy, “Ziggy.” He will be appearing as an Amish farmer opposite Tim Allen and Kirstie Alley in For Richer Or Poorer this December and with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in The Odd Couple II sometime beyond. He lives in New York City’s Greenwich Village with his wife, actress Maryann Plunkett, and their 3-year-old son, Jamie.

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Photo courtesy of the narrator 

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