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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I feel as if words will never be able to express exactly what finding Voices For All has done for me. As a girl who has spent her entire life painfully shy and completely insecure about the extreme lack of ordinary, primarily when pertaning to the tone of her vocal chords, I had spent a large portion of my life hesistant to speak. Obsessed with music, theater, and drama from the sidelines, I always dreamed of being able to express myself using the voice I was given, but decided there just wasn't a way for me to. Everything changed when I entered the Intro Class at my community college and met Eric Hunt. Being introduced to this awesome industry with seemingly endless possibilities for someone who had been living under the notion that having the voice of a "baby" was a bad thing, had me floating home that night, brimming with hope. His evaluation the following week further succeeded in boosting my confidence, and to make a long story a bit shorter, four months later I took his Master Class. The entire weekend exceeded my expectations. I felt that I truly recieved a complete "toolbox" of knowledge to carry away and begin building my career with. The support of the entire VFA staff was wonderful. By the time I entered the studio to record my demo, I knew without a doubt that not only had I come to the right place and met the right people, I was doing something that - whether I succeed or fail - I was born to do. Being in the studio will go down in the history of my life as being one (two hour long) groundbreaking moment. Eric's encouragment enabled me to finally fully embrace my oddities and appreciate my unique voice. The enthusiasm of everyone at Voices For All was completely successful at erasing any of the doubt that I held when first coming into this. I have decided to put the development of my career at the very top of my priority list, am so eager to begin constructing a future in voice over acting, and love knowing that even though the Master Class weekend is behind me, I have the support of these amazing people for as long as I need them.Marissa S. - NY
The Master Class was excellent and John Pruden was Fantastic! Not only did we get a lot of information in a short amount of time, but it was "voice-on". We each did oral exercises and discussed the results in the group. The beginning of the class, I was a sponge. At the end of the class, I was dripping head to toes and leaving wet footprints in my wake.Tina J. - IL
I just attended the VFA Master class with John in San Jose and I have to say it was one of the best decisions I've ever made! I have to admit that I was skeptical going into it but my skeptisism began to fade during the first session and by the end of the class all doubts were completely gone. And if the class wasn't enough to make me a believer, I have been blown away by how helpful the whole VFA family has been in helping me with every aspect of launching my voiceover career. A million thanks to VFA!Andrea J. - CA
The thing is most of the time you do a four or five day class and you leave and you're excited and then you have no idea where to begin. With Voices for All you not only have an amazingly in depth class with excellent knowledgeable teachers, all hyped up to get you on track and teach you all there is to know, but you've practiced scripts, you have you're marketing tools, and the best part of all is you have an excellent demo from a real live studio on a website that launches your career before you know it!! Wow thanks guys, you really know how to do it right.. oh and by the way what about all the technical/email support.. I tried it out not believing that they would respond right away and of course there was Andrea the next day answering all my questions in depth.. Thank you thank you thank you!!Jenny G. - NJ
I would not be on the brink of an incredible journey if it wasn't for the wonderful people at Voices For All. I had no idea how the Internet had changed the Voice Over Industry until Mike Elmore's introductory class. Mike's knowledge of and insight to the industry created the spark. Sherril Stewart did a wonderful job explaining the many benefits that taking the next step - the masters class - would provide. It's so much more than just a few days of training. You also get the studio time and direction to produce two demos, the work/reference book to take home and membership on the VFA website which includes both your own page and many additional resources on all aspects of the industry. These resources also include the people and their willingness to help and answer questions even after the class has ended. I'll admit to being a little concerned by the amount of the initial investment, but Casey Rose's professionalism in taking care of the details of registering helped ease that fear. John Pruden's enthusiasm and wide variety of knowledge, insider tips and hands on exercises made the master class worth every minute and every penny. The class also introduced me to several wonderful people that I look forward to keeping in touch with. John's choice of scripts specifically for me and his direction in the studio coaxed commercial and narration demos out of me that I'm very proud of. The Pro Tools template that Paul Benedetti has created is priceless; it allowed me to record my first sample just an hour after my husband installed Pro Tools on our home PC. Paul's recording experience and quick response to emails (as well as some helpful hints from John) has helped me create a home studio that is ready to roll!!
Now it's up to me to make things happen, but I want to thank the wonderful and knowledgeable people at Voices For All for giving me the tools, support, and encouragement to go on this ride. I would not be on this brink of an incredible journey without you!!Lucy D. - IL
I attended the voiceover Master Class in March, 2009, up in Albany, NY and had an absolute blast. John Pruden was an outstanding instructor and really furnished us with a ton of information in a short period of time! John made it easy to stay attentive and the class was such a positive experience. Recording the demos at the studio was an amazing experience, and also very valuable in learning some of the important nuances of doing voice work. I would recommend this class to anyone looking for valuable information in getting a voicework career going, and I look forward to seeing where the future takes my voice!Albert H. - NY
Success Update UPDATE: Since we last spoke, I have been working with Autodesk, narrating a lot of videos for them for their different products. It's been a really great project and I had no idea it would lead to so much work. I'm currently finishing up about 35 videos for them this week.
SUCCESS UPDATE: Hey Paul, I just did my first voiceover gig this past Saturday! A student at Cal-State University, Dominguez Hills, was working on a project for a class and had to produce/engineer a voiceover for a self-promotional spot (I found his ad on Craigslist using the VFA suggestions for searching jobs). So I read some short copy about his environmental mission involving music and he made suggestions, which I implemented quickly thanks to tips I picked up in the VFA workshop and in my music career, and he was very satisfied with the results! We did several takes and it was fun hearing his feedback and trying different things. He ran the session here at my home studio and produced it. A great experience overall!! Just wanted to let you know...thanks again for all your help!!!
What an incredible weekend packed with information and cool people! Andrea covered so much ground yet so thoroughly at the same time. I feel like I have such great support now and in the future from VFA as I venture out into the world of voiceovers! Thanks so much Andrea, Paul, and everyone at Voices For All!Paul V. - CA
I attended your Introduction to Voice Over class at Paradise Valley Community College here in Phoenix back in February. After that class, Mike talked to me a little bit about watermarking and using PayPal. In the week after the class, Mike and Levi generously answered many questions for me by email, and emphasized their wholehearted support for VFA and what it does for prospective and beginning VO artists. One thing Levi said was utterly crazy-smart: If you have to wait two years to take this class before starting this business, do it. I was skeptical. But he was right.
Well, I've just returned from the Master Class with John Pruden in Burbank. Oh.my..GOSH..!!! It was beyond awesome. I'm very thankful and took your advice and decided to go for it despite the four-month wait. Though that lag between the Intro and Master Classes tested my patience (grin), it was definitely worth every penny and every effort to attend. As I told my classmates, I cant imagine starting this journey without the Master Class experience under my belt. I will be a better artist because of it. I'm so excited now, and happily planning my marketing efforts and home studio setup.
Thanks again for all you do.Alicia E. - AZ
Where to start? Well the best place, as they always say, is at the beginning.
My story will probably read like most in the beginning so if you want to skip that portion feel free to do so but it goes like this.
I was told I have an unusual voice one that is pleasant to listen to and one that comes across as being sincere and honest. I started hearing this already when my voice did the change thing, you know for those male children who lose their Soprano voices and then when answering the phone I was told I sounded like my Mom. My comments always were of course to myself sure people say that to everyone to make them feel good, but I can honestly say, I did hear this from time to time throughout my life and would always thank the individual but then pass it on as being nothing special. So for all who have made it this far, pretty much sounds the same right?
Well fast forwarding, many years have gone by and yes I still hear that I have a great and unusual sounding voice. I have done a considerable amount of public speaking over the years as well as singing either in choirs, quartets, duets, trios and yes even solos. Although singing probably helps, I don’t believe it is the key as to why our voices sound the way they do. It is as I have always felt my unique sound and that which I was blessed with. It is me and who I am. I have always kept that in mind and made certain when I used it, that it would be received as both a blessing and healing because, I do believe with all my heart that is possible. I do though enjoy making presentations to groups and as I mentioned have done so over the years for many years. I find it both exciting as well as exhilarating.
Moving forward again, my own profession which in and of itself is unique has not been doing well for many years. As a matter of fact and I am not ashamed to say this, it never has proven to become what I originally planned. They say having a special niche market is the key to success. Well I can tell you that is not so because I am the perfect example of that sad but true situation. So, what to do?
Well once a month I have a meeting with my chiropractor and it just so happened the day I was scheduled for my bones to be manipulated was the day that would start to change my life. As always, I was chatting with both the receptionist and my doctors wife. Little did I know that the associate doctor was listening to my talking. After I had my treatment, my doctors wife said, Noël, Dr. Miller was listening to you talk and said you have a unique sounding voice, had you ever thought of going into Voice-Overs? I told my doctors wife, no not really, and then I sort of received a gentle nudge to listen to what she had to say. She said, Pasadena City College has a course, Introductory I believe in Voice-Overs you should look into it. I thought to myself, yeah sure, here we go again, am I just fooling myself by thinking I have a unique sounding voice, or am I actually hearing another voice saying Go Check It Out.
So, I thanked my doctors wife, headed out the door and thought maybe I better go over to PCC (Pasadena City College) and look into this further, maybe Spirit is trying to tell me something. Things had not being going well for me and still really are not at this point even as I share this but I thought what the heck, I’ll go and check it out. I arrived only to discover the school was closed for the day, they have several times out of the year they are able to do this and it just so happened to be that day. Wow, was I crushed because I thought well here we go again with the luck I was having yet another wall just went up.
I went to my shop and thought well, maybe this is not suppose to be and thanks again Dr. Miller for your comments and thoughts but it doesn’t look promising. That night when I got home I thought well tomorrow is another day and I am going to head on over to the College and see about this Voice-Over class. I arrived and yes, school was in session so I at least had a good start there. I next went looking for where I had to register since it was for the Adult Ed Extension courses and when I finally found the location down several floors in one of the main buildings, I asked the individual about the class. Immediately he said, yes it is available but it is filled quickly because there are only 20 individuals who can attend. I thought, Oh Boy, here comes another wall, do I dare ask the question so where do I stand at this point? He said, there is only one spot left. I had to think quickly and knowing my financial situation thought well here goes nothing. I took out the only credit card I had because I didn’t have cash and didn’t have enough in my bank account to pay, if this is suppose to work out, there will just be enough in my credit card account to pay for the course. I gave the individual my card and said I want to sign up. While he was processing the card, I said a quick little prayer that if this was suppose to be then everything would go through and I would be the 20th and final person. Well I noticed it was taking much longer than what it normally does to process a card and I thought well this is it, your card is going to be rejected and you will not be able to attend. Good news, the person taking care of processing my card came back with the sheets to sign and my card went through. So, I would be able to attend but then I looked at the date and that was going to be 2 months away. That seemed like such a long time to have to wait. At least I was registered now it was sit and wait some more.
The day came and there along with 19 other individuals I received from Eric Hunt who happened to by my instructor the incredible and interesting story behind Voice-Overs and what it was all about. The first thing Eric said, this industry has really changed and continues to grow and they are no longer looking for The Voice Of God, but the voice of the neighbor next door. I thought to myself, hey maybe I do have a chance and it started to sound better and more doable as Eric continued the course. Now I can tell you, I have been to classes similar where you are going to be taught how to, those especially that are going to make you allot of money but this was not like that at all. This class was so amazing as was Eric who immediately came across not only honest but sincere. No pressure whatsoever. There are, as you most likely are aware I am certain, schools similar to Voices For All out there and other businesses that not only take your money and run never to be seen or heard from again and all during the class that day, I never heard or felt this. There was never any pressure, it was, here is what Voice-Overs is all about we at Voices For All are here to help you especially if you decide to move forward and attend the Master Class. I did not hear a sales pitch being presented every 3 to 4 minutes as to why we should attend it. There was absolutely no pressure, and in this day and age the sale is the key and most important factor of any company doing business. That’s what doing business is all about. This really appealed to me because again, I have been there done that and I don’t like to be constantly reminded about signing up especially today before we are gone because you will not have this opportunity again.
The class continued and the information became even more exciting. Eric, is one amazing individual and has a special way of presenting what you need to know in order to possibly make that decision. The end of class session was drawing near and it was time to do our special recording that would go back with Eric and if you wished have someone contact you to let you know how you did and again only how you did, nothing about signing up for anything else. Well, I was really excited up to that point but then reality hit back home again and there were two issues with me, one I didn’t have a phone number to place on the sheet for someone to call because my line had been disconnected due to not being able to pay my bill, the second option and just as critical was a second number that could be called and again, I had the same problem with my home phone. Of course, guess what?, this affects your email too, so at the end I had to tell Eric, well thank you for a great class, I will have to get back to you when things change. Eric was so kind and said we will be here so contact us when you can.
Bummer, right, well not really. I had someone who helped me get my phones reconnected and so I wrote a letter to Eric at Voices For All and asked if it were possible to hear from someone as to how I did and where I stand. I received a phone call shortly after my letter had arrived from VFA Representative, but not until after a few calls back and forth. The representative from Voices For All was so kind and gracious. I told him first how much I appreciated Eric, what he taught and that this Voice-Over profession was sounding better and better to me. He then proceeded to provide my critique of how I did with my sample recording in the class that day and to my shock and amazement, I did better than I thought. The thing that struck me immediately while he was sharing all those factors as to what makes my voice unique to me and where I would fit in the mix came across exactly the same way Eric did when teaching the class, sincere and no B.S. I truly felt all the time I was talking with him, that what he was saying was not only sincere but once again not trying to sell me on having to take the Master Class. I never once during our conversation (and it was really longer than I realized) did I ever feel pressured or was asked every 3 or 4 minutes “Noël when do we sign you up?” Actually after the VFA Rep went through everything I needed to hear about my session there at PCC, I then engaged him in asking when would it be possible to take a class and how much. I have to say I gulped at least several times and not because of the cost, because even now as a graduate of the Master Class, I feel that what I paid was well worth the amount requested but it was how am I going to pay for this and I want to get started right away and the soonest would be December. To many what if’s started hitting again and yet in ending our conversation I told him that I would honestly try to see how I could raise the money and hopefully attend in December.
Well, the next time I called, I had the pleasure of meeting Courtney Thayer who was able to pick up right where I left off and again I noticed how each individual I kept meeting with Voices For All responded with the same, warm, friendly and ever so willingness to help. I asked Courtney if it would be possible to let me know if someone happened to drop out of the December class, please contact me hopefully I would have the money needed to attend the class. I received a call as well as an email and there was an opening, my problem though, still no money to pay for the class and the only other options available would be January 2010 and then again February 2010. I let Courtney know I would do everything in my power to get my funds there before the December class, but it just wasn’t meant to be and really things were not looking good for January or February either. However, I did have a change take place and so, I mailed my check, at least I thought I did to Voices For All for the February class because January was not appearing to have anyone drop out of the class. So, February it was and that was I know meant to be since Eric Hunt would be my classroom instructor. I was really pleased because I thought well Eric knows me or I hope knows me from when I took the class at PCC back in May of 2009 and that would be helpful to both of us.
In the meantime while waiting for verification my check had been received I also met Casey and Andrea through email, reminding me of what to expect and let me know my check had still not arrived. Oh, was I embarrassed when I discovered that, I failed to put the State and zipcode so the post office returned my letter with my check. I immediately got on the email trail and let Courtney, Casey and Andrea know what happened and sent the check out once again with the proper address.
The letter arrived along with the check and I received my email saying Welcome, meet at the hotel Friday at 7:00 p.m. where you will meet with Eric and start your journey. Excited, so much so, I read it wrong, and thought I had to be there at 7:00 a.m. that morning so, I made a trip twice that day but that’s all right, I found it the second time really fast and was anxious to get started.
The four days that I had with Eric were incredible, everything and more than I truly expected. That same warm helpful desire was that those who represent Voices For All was there waiting to start the class. I was pleased that Eric did remember me since May last year was a long time back and I am sure the instructors see and meet many over the years scheduled classes that are provided both from the introductory class to the Master Class and of course that is not to mention the other special classes one can take after the Master Class. The class setting was really great and intimate so that it made it so much easier to work with my fellow students whom I truly enjoyed and had fun with.
Each day as it unfolded presented what I would need to not only know but to be capable of using in order to become involved in the Voice-Over Profession. Even though I may not personally have shown as much excitement as others, inside I was truly appreciating the talent of Eric and his ability to bring the very best out of each member attending. What especially stood out was how patient he is/was because I know even when he would say to me for instance, try it this way, my trying that way was still not correct and then a kind word would come again with yet another suggestion or recommendation saying well try it this way. It was especially fun working with my fellow classmates and helping as best I could to assist still being really so new. What I especially appreciated was Eric’s explanations of all that we were to be taught and his willingness to be interrupted when asked a question during each session. The examples on the screen were not only excellent but extremely helpful too. I know that I still have much more to learn based on those days spent at class and I do read and re-read my binder that is so beautifully prepared to help me. This in and of itself is such an incredible tool that will make it much easier, but more important and again this was made known constantly during the class sessions as well as from all at Voices For All, we are only a phone call, email away with whatever help you need. We are here to make your experience a lasting experience and don’t hesitate contacting us. Now I ask, how many other courses offer this type of assistance and constant help, but more important the love that you feel from each individual you are in contact with always willing to help really comes through like gangbusters??? This next answer you probably know already, but I would venture a guess, the majority of Class Offerings such as what I attended would maybe say thank you from the organization but mainly just take your money and say good-bye.
My final day of course with Voices For All was preparing my Demonstration Recording, that I would be able to download and have to re-distribute or send someone needing to hear my voice to a very professionally provided Website where individuals can hear me too. Now I ask again, how many other organizations would do this?, and of course you know what the answer is. That day was really special and I got to observe and watch Eric’s patience kick in even higher because, although I was the last person for that day, I wasn’t the only person and not only did he have to be tired but ready to call it a day by the time I arrived. I have been in recording studios similar so, that was not new but what was really neat was to actually work with Eric and his assistant taking read after, read, after read and always being so gracious in helping me to do the very best possible. I was sorry to see that day conclude but was pleased with all that had transpired.
I can say without a doubt, I am so pleased I became a part of the Voices For All family and did graduate so that I now can move forward and start working towards the goals I have set in Voice-Over work. Everyone at Voices For All and I know I have not met them all yet are the most incredible people to have come into my life. Even if I never pursued this line of work, I feel I am so rich with the individuals at Voices For All who have helped in making my life better.
What is my future? I don’t know, but what I see and feel, it is looking better than what it has been these past years. I even think about wouldn’t it be nice to get a job for National Geographic or any of the Nature Series on PBS? I think what makes me really feel special, unlike any other profession, this industry really cannot discriminate against your age or ethnicity and I have faced that so much these past years, because those requesting an audition unless you physically attend them and that doesn’t seem to be the case in most auditions one will apply for, they have no idea how old you are, what you look like or any other stereotypical possibility that might exist like when you are looking for work with a company. It all boils down to (and this I did learn immediately thanks to Eric) whether or not you have the exact Voice that firm/company is looking for. Nothing more, nothing less and that is a great way to approach this industry. You know and understand this going in right at the beginning. How neat is that?
So “Thank You” Voices For All for coming into my life. I really appreciate all of you and know that we will have a continuing and ongoing relationship that is just going to mature and get better. You are one amazing organization and I hope to make you proud.
Noel B. - CA
Hi Paul, I just wanted to say how great the Master Level course was. The class time with John Pruden was excellent. He has a command of the mechanics, artistic process, and marketing needs - and he delivers on all of these in a very professional manner, with humor and real life examples. The voice work in the class room was great. The time in the studio was invaluable for a wannabe VO artist and the Demo generated was awesome. I had great fun. I also want to mention that Eric Hunt was excellent in the course I took before getting involved with the Master Level course. I recommend this to anyone considering a vocation in voice acting. Moreover, the resources provided after the course have been great. Lots of information on the web site and great advice and help getting things started.Jack R. - OH
At last I can do what it is I was meant to do, talk and get paid. But really, I thank you so much for the beginning of a great and fun journey.Douglas Y. - MI
As a whole, being in the "Biz" for over 20 years, I can say with confidence that VFA is an excellent program. The atmosphere is relaxed, fun and excitng. Attention to detail and overall professional instructional style at VFA is right on point. If you are one who is "on the fence" about VFA, do not miss your opportunity to grow as a person and as a professional. VFA is worth every penny! John Knight. Actor, Voice Actor, Model and Acting Coach.John K. - NJ
Exciting! John made the class fun from the moment we walked in. There's nothing like learning and having fun at the same time. The studio experience was great and the demo is unbelievable! John is a great teacher and a great coach. Many thanks to John and all of the VFA staff who have encouraged and helped with a smile!Nettie U. - MO
I am so glad that I took the class at my community college with Eric Hunt, which lead to taking the Master Class with John Pruden. The class was intense & very informative, leaving me with a precise idea of how to proceed. It wasn't until I heard my demos that it hit me how cool it all is. Nothing but praise goes to the entire staff for an amazing experience that is continuing on.David P. - PA
The VFA Master Class covers every aspect of Voice Acting. This is the real deal.Tom S. - NY