We welcome you to read the thoughts and sentiments of some of our upper level graduates. See what they think, and read about their experiences with Voices For All from their own personal perspective. Students from all over the country choose to start and further their career in the voiceover industry with VFA, and we are proud to display some of their feelings about us here in their own words, unedited. Some students even choose to send us success updates. Please visit our Success Updates section to view them. As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or inquiries you may have.
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Hi Everyone! It was my husband who saw the local college was having an "Introduction to Voice-Over" class. I had mentioned that for years I had wanted to do this. So ... last September (or was it August?) I joined the small class at Mesa Community College in Arizona to listen and learn from Mike. I was totally absorbed! So when February this year came around, I found myself in San Jose where once again I sat "glued" to every word. This time it was Eric who was taking the class; and what a great class of people it was too. My dream came true when I went to the studio to record my demos! Eric, you were a very patient person to take direction from. What a fabulous sense of humour and wonderful tutor. I've not managed to get my studio up and running yet but thinking positively (as always), I know I will just as soon as I can. Eric, Mike and everyone at VFA. Thank you so much. You are truly "THE BEST".Jan L. - AZ
SUCCESS UPDATE: Finally landed my first gig! A 30 sec TV spot for a vision center on a local station out in Arizona. Videographer Nathan P. says there will probably be follow-up work as well, which is potentially good for us both. What a great feeling to get started after so many auditions! My makeshift studio is working nicely, and I plan to construct a decent recording booth from which to work. Makes me appreciate the carpentry my dad taught me. Thanks again to our instructor Andrea and the whole VFA team. My next goal (besides getting more work) is to create some additional demos, and I plan to take you up on your offer to professionally critique them. My son Adam and I attended the MC together, and he got his first job just a few weeks thereafter. But that's his tale to tell... To everyone else, keep at it! Something will come through, no matter how small, and we ALL have to start SOMEwhere. Best of luck, and thanks again VFA!
For a long time I have enjoyed reading out loud, for my children when they were small, and currently as a Lector in my church. Friends and family would occasionally say I could be an announcer, maybe work on radio, but I thought they were just being kind. While I like making my reading more lively and interesting, I didnt think I had any professional prospects. I was busy enough working full-time (and then some!) supporting my family. Besides, I'm just an ordinary guy, and nobody knows that better than I do. One day my wife showed me a listing for a one-night class at the community college, an Introduction to Voice Acting. Knowing my reticence, she pushed a little and I thought, I can spare an evening for that. Those two hours changed my life! Most of us walk a few byways parallel to our main career path (side jobs, volunteering, etc.), and that night I was shown the start of a new one for me. The class went astonishingly quickly, because it was FUN! Our instructor was energetic and encouraging, and toward the end he coached us as we read and recorded a sample commercial. I came away from that experience knowing I wanted more. I agreed to have my voice evaluated and was contacted about a week later. They assured me that my family and friends were right; I had potential. Signing up for the Master Class was a big step, but I realized it was an investment in my future. How many of us can say they like their jobs? As a mechanical designer and drafter, I enjoy what I do, but I also believe you shouldn't have "all your eggs in one basket". So I could hardly wait for my MC to begin. I could ramble on about the great experiences in those 3 fascinating days, but let me just say that I met a group of wonderful new friends, both mentors and students. Thank you SO MUCH for your sharing! We are family now, and I want to stay in touch. To Eric (for the "Intro" class) and Andrea (my MC instructor), Thank You for your energy and support throughout. And a huge THANK YOU to Paul and Stan (and everyone else!) for bringing to life their vision, VOICES FOR ALL!
Michael H. - PA
SUCCESS UPDATE: First Paying Gig! Thanks to everyone at VFA for helping me find my calling! After two months with my home studio (auditioning everyday, networking through my local Chamber of Commerce, emailing demos and wondering if they were ever listened to!), I just completed my first paid IVR recording! I am now the corporate phone messaging voice for Litco International, based in Youngstown, Ohio. Someone else mentioned that elusive light at the end of the new career tunnel, and I have been seeing it, watching my rankings improve on posted auditions, getting contacted by a local TV station for promo spots, and private audition/rate quotes for e-learning narration projects. I'm most amazed by the fact that this is really a FULL TIME JOB - I can't even watch TV anymore without dissecting the commercial VO talents. But it is definitely in my blood and I'm hungry for more. Thanks Leah for introducing me to this new world, and thank you Mike, Andrea, Eric and Courtney for always being there and believing (sometimes for me!) that I can DO this!
SUCCESS UPDATE UPDATE: I've just recorded narration for a regionally produced arts program on Western Reserve Public Media (PBS Affiliate) in Akron, Ohio, and will be providing VOs for promos (and hopefully more broadcast narration projects) throughout the year. So excited! Thanks VFA staff for all your direction and support!
Can't say enough good things about VFA and their staff! Great insight, great materials, awesome help through emails. No question too small! Thought about trying to launch my career on my own after the intro class, but attending the master class was a great investment. I got all the tools I need to really hit the ground running. If you're serious about pursuing a career in voice-over, taking advantage of VFA's experience and success is the best choice you can make to help you reach your goal!
Theresa S. - OH
First of all, I owe my VFA experience to Eric Hunt. I became interested in VO while attending broadcasting school in 2007. Since the school was geared towards radio and tv,my curiosity was never satisfied. I happened to see and ad for the intro class in the newspaper and decided to take the class. Eric was my instructor, and by chance I was the first one there. I was sick that day, but still showed up eager to learn. We said hello to one another and made small talk, but he seemed distracted, almost like he didn't want to be there. Then...............the class started. Eric did a complete 360. He began speaking to us about the industry,in a way "performing" in front of the class. The class was mesmerized. I cant remember the last time I laughed so hard ! I thought I was watching Robin Williams. It was the quickest 3 hrs of my life. I left that day completely motivated to be a VO artist. After I got my evaluation, I made plans to take the master. I got into NY that night and didnt know what to expect. But soon after arriving at VFA headquarters, I began to feel comfortable. The classroom and studio had that type of feel to it. I was blessed to have exceptional classmates, who were not only friendly, but supportive and enthusiastic of each other. Before the start of each day we did a silly exercise that helped put everyone at ease and relax. The exercises in class at times became tedious but Andrea did a fantastic job of not only keeping everything moving but interesting. By the time the class was over and it was my studio session, I felted like I was ready.Everything in the studio went smoothly. When I needed to be directed, Andrea explained what she wanted in a way that was easy to understand and apply.Even now after graduation, the VFA staff has remained in touch. Whenever I ask Andrea for advice or an opinion, she gets back to me in a timely manner. I wouldnt hesitate to recommend VFA to anyone who has big dreams........Sampson B. - NJ
VFA has given me one of the most exciting educational experiences. From my first contact with Courtney, which was special in many ways and continues to be extremely patient and suppportive. To my evaluation/intro with Leah, which was so much fun and assuring, and then on to Sherril, who was creative, thorough, patient ad so totally on top of it!! and Mike Elmore, where do I begin......Mike is awesome!!! I feel so blessed and forunate to have been in his MC. The weekend was ...... well, I can hardly think of words to describe. The class was a great mix ans Mike's techniques, professionalism, personality, thoughtfulness and experience shared was more than I expected. The staff at VFA has demonstrated abilities above and beyond their job, there is a passion felt in what they do! I am my caeer and my life has been enhanced and knowing that VFA and all their expertise, will be here for me is the icing on the cake!!Leslye H. - CA
I decided to pursue an opportunity with Voice Acting late last year after numerous years with receiving positive feedback about my voice through corporate presentations and public speaking. It was through a VO introduction class at a local middle school in my area that led me to VFA. The VFA program and staff blew me away and went way above my expectation. They are genuine and care about the success of each student that shows willingness to succeed in this business. They took the time to work with every student. The class was very informative while being fun. It was engaging and got everyone's creative juices flowing. Andrea is an elite instructor and as a public speaker conducting corporate presentations I was quite impressed. She is very professional and highly enthusiastic about this field. She made this class quite enjoyable one of the best I ever attended. It feels comfortable to know this organization will be at your side every step of the way in this business. The resources available are plentiful to any one thinking about getting into this business. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction to pursue my passion!Chris S. - CT
After completing the VFA Master Class I feel that I now have attainable goals, a strong sense of direction, and a better understanding about the voice over profession. The class was easy to follow with clear objectives and invaluable hands-on exercises. Eric Hunts teaching style brought excitement and energy to the class. He made the content of the class fun and entertaining, effectively engaging the class in lively discussions and productive sessions. One of the best courses I've ever taken!Laurel L. - WA
SUCCESS UPDATE: Hi VFA, Wanted to let you know I had my first VO job this past weekend. Every year the Rockefeller Group has their version of the Academy Awards and they will hear my voice announcing the different types of awards being presented next week. They had requested a robotic GPS like voice and I had a blast. My girlfriends husband works for them and he was in charge of putting the whole soundtrack together. There was no money in the budget but I am so excited to have something to put on my resume now, and he said he will call on me again.
Tell Andrea she would have been proud we only did a few takes and it was done quickly, I had remembered all she told me. Hope all is well with everyone. -Susan
Voices For All Master Class was so much more than expected. The entire weekend was so exciting and informative. I was so eager to absorb as much information as I could and I was lucky enough to be sent home with a workbook with any details I had not retained. Andrea was sensational as our instructor with her vibrant energy and enthusiasm, her belief in me helped accomplish the desired result. I am so fortunate to know that I have the support of VFA. Every single VFA staff member had taken the time to encourage continued communication, it is so comforting to know assistance is just a phone call away. I am certain I will be back for the Advanced Master Class. Thank you so very much for a life changing weekend.
As a newbie to this business with nothing but a long-time desire to join in the fun of acting with my voice, I found the whole experience of the Master Class so satisfying. Eric made us feel so comfortable in class. There is so much more to learn about doing voice-over work, but the whole VFA team is there to help us any way we need. It's a great feeling to know I am not out there alone. Looking forward to realizing the dream; not minding the work ahead. I'm pumped!Mary W. - IL
Walking into the Introduction to Voice Over class at my local community college was one of the best steps I've ever taken! Having recently been laid off from my job of 16 years, I was looking for my next great adventure. After the intro class with Mike Elmore, I knew that voice over was it. After speaking with Sherril Stewart about the Master Class, and with the full support of my wonderful husband, I signed up for the next class in San Jose, CA a few months later. Now that class is behind me, and I'm soooo excited to begin this new phase in my life. Mike gave me the tools I needed to begin. The class was exciting, informative, awesome, and I didn't want it to end! My recording session was so much fun ... it went by so fast and Mike made is seem so easy and natural. I couldn't have asked for anything more or any more knowledgeable and interesting people to work with. Soon, I'll be setting up my home studio, and, most likely, calling on VFA for help - I know they'll be there for me. The VFA family does seem like that ... a family! And I'm so proud and happy to have become a member. I can't wait to get my voice over career started. Thank you VFA, Mike, Sherrill, and Andrea, for helping me find my passion and purpose. You'll be hearing from me when I win my first paying gig!!Cheryl M. - AZ
Thanks, Eric Hunt, for presenting the VFA Master Class in such an interesting and FUN manner! There was tons of information to absorb but having the Master Class manual will be a great resource to refer to in case we have questions. I really enjoyed the opportunities in class for us to try out our voice acting chops and learn various ways to interpret scripts. Our group was interesting in that we all were very active participants and the support we gave each other made it a safe environment to try new things. Eric, your creative and humorous teaching style helped bring out things in some of us that we didn't know was there. I especially enjoyed being in the studio on my final day to record my demo. It was a real-life, professional experience and Eric, your positive and honest feedback put me at ease and allowed me to be creative and to be myself. VFA, you put me on the path of fulfilling a life-long dream and for that I am truly grateful!Jackie T. - IL
Taking the Master Class from Voices for All was one of the best things I have ever done for myself and my chosen profession. I had an Agent within two months of graduating. Recently I read a book for the blind for an exclusive radio station for the sight impaired. It was a Christmas book and I will admit I was having a hard time making everything work. I have a new MACbook that I had never really worked with. Before that I had been sold a PC that really wasn't up to the job of handling large files such as audio books. I thought it would be a snap but I found out otherwise when I started to work with it. I had never had a MAC before. I called VFA each and every time I was experiencing a problem. Courtney Thayer was always there to help me. Sometimes by e-mail and sometimes by phone. She made it her mission to help me get this Christmas book done in time. Paul Benedetti (the Founder of VFA) was also there to help at times. Miraculously I finished the recording just in time. I heard from the engineer at the station that my timing couldn't have been better. They needed to start a new book the next day. My book played in 1 hour increments for 4 days with the last segment airing on Christmas Day! I couldn't have asked for a better time slot. Thank you Courtney and VFA!
I am proud to say that I will be in the very first Advanced Classes for Audio Books and Animation & Video Games that will be taking place in Seattle at the end of January. If you are a Master Class Graduate I strongly suggest you invest in your business and take these classes. If you are serious and believe in yourself you will not be sorry!Jan C. - MO
SUCCESS UPDATE: My adventure started in the winter of 2008 when, on a flook, I took the VFA intro class at the local community college. Little did I know how it would change my life.
I then continued this journey by jumping in and taking the VFA Master Class in the Spring of 2009. What a wonderful experience it was. Mike opened up, with great expertise, the encompassing world of Voiceover to me.
With information in hand and motivation in my heart, I immediately started to build my home studio, procure all the necessary tools, and create my voiceover identity - ALL with the help and support of the VFA team.
Once I felt I was fully prepared and ready to search for work, I started the job search. Confident that I do have the voice people want, and being fully aware of the entertainment/media world - where you need to pay some dues before getting that proverbial foot in the door - I pursued my new dream. My first job was an IVR for a large Canadian Company - in English and French. This job should have taken no more than an hour or two to record and edit - but.....my final hour count was 10!!!
After this eye-opening experience, I started to work on my editing skills a little every week - and continue on to search all those gigs waiting for me. I responded and responded to audition requests. Several months went by without a bite, but not giving up, I got a surprise regional TV ad gig from a large LA production company - they saw me on the VFA site. The producer directed me with his client via a phone call. It turned out great and gave me confidence to go on.
In the tunnel of my new founded career, the slightest glimpse of that light at the end kept on flickering, but wasn't quite bright enough to lead me out.
Keeping my motivation going, I marched on, never faltering in my pace and got a great gig with an established NY Photographer and Art Director - NON-PAYING - to create a concept ad. What a good thing that was! As this was a collaboration, we worked TOGETHER on this, each one feeling free to add any and all input into this project. I was able to prove myself to him, with both my voice skills and my creative insight. We are beginning a new perfume concept ad. Not only did I gain experience from this collaboration, I had several doors flung open for me - that light was growing brighter. I also got another gig for an Ohio Cable Network Promo. The contacts and networks start to grow. I could now actually feel the warmth from that light.
I have been spending time submitting my demos everywhere and anywhere. I've gotten great feedback and interest. These grueling hours are definitely paying off. The more people hear from you the more responses you get. It's a no-brainer. I have been signed with Vox Talent, Inc., Toronto - the largest voiceover talent agency in Canada! Creative Media Design in New York is interviewing me as I write (difficult to multitask) and I've been accepted as talent on several voice sites. So Williams Morris here I come!!!
My adventure is far from over, it is just beginning. With the support of all those around me, the excellent VFA Team, colleagues old and new, I will continue to strive this course - though bumpy at times and not too green ($$$) yet - with the motivation I still hold in my heart and a lot more information under my belt!
Leah and I finished our video conference a little bit ago and I just wanted to say how great it was to have her coach me today! The 3 character voices I am working on for a web comic had very little discription, but with Leah at my side everythig became clear. We worked on the voices together. She had lots of great feedback and advice. Needless to day at the end of our 1/2 hour master coaching session I felt confident and capable to perform my characters. I will keep you posted as to the outcome!Dana A. - CA
Eric Hunt was by far, the most insperational and up beat person you will ever meet. The class was, by far, the most incredeble experence I have ever had. Thank you all.David P. - WA
Just came out of the Masters class with renewed enthusiasm! It's a compressed weekend including a ten-hour Saturday, but the exercises are fun and make the time fly by. Having seen two instructors and worked with several VFA support staff by now, it's clear that their passion is selfless to help others succeed. They're smart and organized and have their act together. The investment is nothing to sneeze at, but the benefits are beyond what I even expected originally. The value of the demo and web site alone makes the rate competitive. The promise of lifetime support includes the ability to submit photos and sample recordings from your home studio, for advice on how to improve it. VFA class alumni get a discounted rate on equipment and can ask for coaching questions at any time. Not to mention the detailed 150-page class workbook written in plain language. The class provides practice in the B.A.S.I.C. technique, which was a revelation for me because it looks deceptively simple on paper but works wonders for throwing yourself into character. The demo studio session was energetic, the scripts are provided and our instructor Eric brought all kinds of creative ideas himself. We learned about marketing and saw photos of sample home studios to stir ideas. I'd recommend to others to give VFA a try! It's got a family feel, not just some assembly line to make a buck. They're true professionals and the network is first-rate.Joe M. - IL