The narrator for the Science Channel's new "Deadly Intelligence" series Sunday (10 p.m. April 8) may sound familiar.
You may have heard 1988 Sycamore High School graduate Dan Nachtrab about 10 years ago on commercials for Kerry Automotive, Gold Star Chili, Cincinnati Bell, McSwain Carpets, and more recently on WCET-TV's "Music Hall: The Next Movement" in November and public TV "Our Ohio."
He's also voiced TV promotions for Fox, Fox Sports, CBS, NBC, PBS, the NFL Network and ESPN ("Monday Night Football – Bears-Giants, 8:15 p.m. Monday on ESPN!")
Natchtrab's also the anonymous voice narrating National Geographic Channel's "Wicked Tuna," "Border Wars," and "The Pope vs. Hitler," and the Weather Channel's "Hurricane 360." He also worked for Spike, Epix, FX, WE tv, Cinemax, and other channels.
And in Dayton, he was known as "Dan-O" the DJ on WTUE-FM, WMMX-FM, WZLR-FM and for the Cox radio cluster.
"I always wanted to do radio in Cincinnati, but never did. I grew up listening to Q102 and WEBN, but it never happened," says Nachtrab, who lives in Portland, Ore., with his wife Niki and their two children. He started in Dayton radio in 1990, after taking courses from Bobbi Maxwell and others at the old Connecticut School of Broadcasting here.
In the new weekly Science Channel series, Nachtrab narrates stories about untimely and suspicious deaths of scientific geniuses. The "Deadly Intelligence" premiere looks at the death of Frank Olson, a CIA-employed biological warfare scientist who died falling out of the window of a New York City hotel in 1953.
Other episodes look at Nikola Tesla, the father of the "Death Ray," who was found dead in a New York hotel room at the height of WWII; engineer Gerald Bull, who was gunned down outside of his Brussels apartment after his research into cutting-edge artillery; Jack Parsons, the Jet Propulsion Lab co-founder who died in a suspicious lab explosion; and American researcher Shane Todd, who supposedly committed suicide in Singapore in 2012 while working on a futuristic semi-conductor, says Science Channel publicity.
Nachtrab recorded the narration November through January for an Australian production company. It's his first show for the Science Channel, after working for sister channels Investigation Discovery, Discovery Family and Animal Planet.
Nachtrab began concentrating on a voiceover career when he realized he could make more money there than in radio. He moved the family to Portland in 2010 to make a clean break from his "Dan-O" radio days. He mostly works in a basement studio at his home.
"It's been an adventure," Nachtrab says.
Next up? Voicing promos for "Inside Out with Katie Couric," a new series from the former NBC and CBS news personality, premiering Wednesday, April 10 (10 p.m., National Geographic).
"Most of the stuff I'm doing is for National Geographic. I'm what they call their 'signature voice,' although they use others," he says.