Students occasionally take time out of their busy schedules to send us updates on their progress in the voice acting world. We are proud to display some of those stories here in our Success Updates section. We also welcome you to read the thoughts and sentiments of some of our upper level graduates in our Testimonials section. As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or inquiries you may have.
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I've had a wonderful year motivated by my experiences at Voices for All. I have a weekly program reading selected excerpts from Worcester Magazine for Audio Journal, a radio station for the blind or visually handicapped. By doing this volunteer work, I branched out to their Speaking Volumes program which airs each month and is a book discussion group. In addition, along with some others we have revived Audio Journal's Radio Active Theatre which records radio dramas for airing each month complete with sound effects and music. We have a group of 25 mostly amateur actors who are having a great time recording in our studio, often playing more than one role. I have a background in teaching and directing but after retiring I probably wouldn't be doing any of this if I had not taken the class with you. Not getting paid money, but getting rewarded in many other ways.
I hope this message finds you doing well. I'm doing fine and very busy. I wanted to let you know that I was selected to be the voice of the company I work for. This is a corporate firm statewide and international. I submitted recording sample of my voice to the script provided by the IT Manager in our San Francisco office. I'm not sure how many tried out but I know it was a few. Anyway I got a call this morning that the Planning Committee selected me to be the voice for all of the 25 offices. I just wanted you to know that I am still moving forward and pressing towards being in this wonderful world of voice over. This will be my 3rd architectural firm I've done voice over for. I'm so excited and I wanted this position really bad. Guess what I read it in one take!
Dear Ms. Thayer, earlier this year I was asked to do a narration regarding a presentation for the firm I presently work for. I've also have done some voice mail greetings for a couple of businesses out of state.
My first gig was offered to me just a few days after the demo's were posted and my equipment was set up. I found a posting on craigslist asking for a female voice over for a hair salon. I submitted a link to my demo's, and then went about my day.
I was so estatic when I got an email later that night saying that they wanted to use me for their Hair Salon Video! I was literally jumping up and down in my seat with excitement and amazement!!! My first VO gig, and so soon! We worked out the terms over email, he sent me a script. It was recorded and edited it that same night, sent off as a wave file, and two days later, my salon commercial was on You Tube! And true to their word, I received payment in the mail just a few days later.
I can't wait until my internship is over and I can devote more time to Voice Over. I want to work on my animation/gaming/ character demo, and have been developing some distinct 'voices'. I also want to start submitting myself for more gigs, to agents, and to studio's and companies.
I'm certain that more success stories are sure to follow!
I am really thrilled about my budding voice over career! I spent a few weeks learning to use my Home Studio. It takes awhile to learn the fine points of editing, but I am improving all the time! One way I've honed my skills is by doing lots of auditions for jobs on voices.com. I also worked my first full day for a company called Digital Education Productions. They create a series of ESL teaching DVDs called "Easy: The ESL Series." I love the flexibility of the work, and it is very gratifying to be paddling my own canoe. I'm working on my New Yawk accent.....unearthing it from my growing up years in New Jersey. I'm working on creating promotional materials, doing lots of networking, and donating my services to a local school auction, as well as bartering, to get my name out there! I've never had more fun while working in my whole life! Thank you for the excellent training, and the invaluable follow-up support.
Hi Again Wonderful Teachers! I just had to tell you the good news. After 300 or more auditions, which really honed my editing skills, I landed and completed a job for an animated healthcare video for the Los Angeles Unified School District. The job was offered through Sodium Entertainment. I worked hard on it and am really excited to be working in my new field! Thanks to all of you for nurturing me through the early stages of this satisfying new venture.
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!
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!
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!
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. I will be purchasing equipment for my home studio very soon, so I will be in touch for vocal sound approval. Hope all is well with everyone. - Susan
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!
I've been sharing my voiceover adventures on my Facebook page, and last week a friend contacted me. He was producing a 30-second spot to promote an event at a local Performing Arts Center and asked me to do the VO. (My home studio wasn't quite ready to use, so we went to a sound engineer downtown.) He didn't have the budget to pay me, but he negotiated with the marketing department at the Arts Center. They provided me with 6 event tickets, a $196 value! You can check out the spot at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZWWzhnxlWo
Hello VFA Family, Alot of great things have happened for me since the Masters class in Los Angleles. I have done a "Narration" for a well-known band; have a gig coming up next month for a "Narration" for a ceremony and have been asked if I would volunteer to do some "Public speaking" at and upcoming event in November. Lastly, I have gotton a call to possibly do a voice over for a character in a book that is out on the market. This has all been possible because of VFA....Thanks guys and gals of VFA I will keep you posted.
I just wanted to update everyone on what has been going on since the Master Class. I recently recorded the on-hold messages for my employer, Cal National Bank now part of U.S. Bank. They are running throughout our 68 branches in Southern California as well as at our call center. I hope this leads to future nationwide recordings with U.S. Bank. Thank you again VFA!!
Hi Paul, I am very glad to report that I have successfully completed my first Public Service Announcement. The 60-second, two-voice spot aired approximately 15 times from May 24 through May 30 on KRXA Radio in the Monterey California market. The spot announced an upcoming event in the Monterey area.
I had the honor of attending and helping out at the event and was told many times by attendees that they had "heard about it on the radio." In fact, one attendee said, "I heard the announcement so many times that I just knew this place would be packed!" and it was. I recorded the spot in Monterey in the sound studio at the radio station!
Success Update Update: It's an honor to be able to state that I've completed the voiceover/narration for the League of Women Voter's 90th Anniversary video. I narrated the video for the Eden Area Chapter of the League and I understand that other Leagues in California as well as the National League have requested copies for their use.
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.
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!!!
Since the class: I did the voiceover work for a marketing company in my hometown of Portland, OR. I narrated their website sales video and created "how-to" tutorials for their existing customers to help them navigate the website. Thanks for giving me the tools to make this happen!
I've had a lot more happen since my last success update when I first wrote VFA. I voiced an actor-read product testimonial for a wood preservative product; spiritual readings for website videos; voiceover for an iPhone application and I'm the narrator for an upcoming internet play titled "They Did Take It With Them", by Retro Radio Plays. I've also had the opportunity to be on-camera as well. I auditioned for a local cable company commercial that needed a voiceover experienced actor. Since I didn't have on-camera experience, I didn't think I'd get the part, but I did! I was also able to get a part in a movie as a "snitch". My character was pistol-whipped by a corrupt FBI agent in the movie, Tarts, Fools and the G-Men. I owe all of this to Voices For All, because if it wasn't for VFA I would have never had the necessary tools to make this happen! Thanks again!
I thought I would give a quick update on my voice acting career following my June 2007 Masters Class. Unfortunately, I had a delay getting things moving due to recovering from a disability in late 2007. So, recently I finally invested in the recommended home studio. I realized that before I stepped off the audition bridge and commit myself as a professional voice actor, I better be in a position to respond to the needs of my prospective clients. It has been two years since my Masters Class. So, I spent months practicing in the studio, getting comfortable with the equipment, and studying the VFA guide. Most of all getting to know the Pro Tool software! Paul from VFA, and Martin from FullCompass, get a lot of thanks for getting me on the right track with my studio. ProTools is a fantastic product. Although the VFA template gets you going, and is a fast track for voice acting, one must still be efficient about editing and generating the necessary files to your customer in a timely manner. I feel the practice has set the stage for being successful and responsive. For me, it has been slowly but surely. I am now on a steady course for making this all happen. Thank you VFA!
In October of 2010, I attended the Master Class in Chicago, with many hopes and dreams of the possibilities that lay ahead. I had no idea the variety of VoiceOver projects that were available until we began digging into the manual. A few weeks after returning home from the MC, I set up my home studio and began to practice reading scripts, recording and editing. I kept the manual on my desk until I learned all the steps. I chose a business name, designed and ordered business cards, began to sign up with the social networking sites and free VO sites. It was 2 months later that I landed my first 'gig' voicing the Mrs Watters character for a Youtube video. Currently, every Tuesday night I work at WORT 89.9, Madison as a member of the Promos group. We produce promos for the station. Typically we write, voice, edit and fully produce 8 - 12 promos. This talent pool has a wide range of knowledge and experience from radio and television alike. I also Host "The Morning Show", Monday - Friday, 9am until Noon, on ASLN Christian Radio. This is completely unscripted and Voice Tracked, with no editing capability. This truly challenges me to either 'get it right' or do it over, and I don't like do overs! I'm learning more about breath control, speaking succinctly and clearly as well as creating topics for my show. How fun is that???!!! : ) The best paying VO project I completed during the summer was for CUNA; two eLearning programs used for training their employees. This was awesome. I went to their studio and was blessed with an Engineer, and you know what that means - right! Yep, HE did the editing. WOO HOO Throughout 2011, I also completed a Documentary Narration, which was especially challenging, in that the script was amended, changed and added to several times before the project was done. The film has not yet been released, however I look forward to the screening when it occurs. I have done several PSA's, one went International, airing on Canadian radio stations. I voiced the character of Mrs. Watters on a Youtube SIMS video. Not my best work, but it was early in my career and I was completely excited to be chosen for the part. I discovered the 'elf' character voice in me, when I voiced a promo for a radio station during Christmastime. I've produced Telephone Greetings and On-Hold Phone Messages for a variety of companies, announced Cheer Squads, DJ's and have done a few other liners as well. I was invited to audition to be a Co-host of a Podcast - but declined the offer as it was not the genre or the image I wish to portray in my business. I find some of the projects and some of them find me. I know people are checking out my VFA webpage because the visitor counter is rising steadily. I look forward to the day I can quit the day job, I also know this will take time and perseverance on my part.
I wanted to let Voices For All know how the Master Class has impacted my life. I completed the class in June of 2008 in Bellevue, WA. John Pruden was the excellent and encouraging teacher. It was the highlight of my year building my confidence and inspiring my imagination.
While it was clear that one could expect to make money with this training, I am enjoying a reward of another kind. I work at University Presbyterian Church (UPC), a very large congregation in Seattle, WA. We have about 3500 people in worship on Sundays. My pastoral role involves developing ministry for those in the second half of life. As our church is getting more and more tech savvy, with many web-based communications and opportunities, it occurred to me there is still a layer of oldsters who are not computer people. So with the encouragement of my husband, I began a ministry out of our home that anyone with a phone can easily access. It is called Pray the Word. I brought in a 2nd phone line and every weekday, I prepare and record a 4-minute outgoing phone message of scripture and prayer that people can dial up and hear anytime of the day. The recordings are produced out of our simple home recording studio, which the VFA class helped me design.
After a couple of weeks, UPC asked us to put Pray the Word on a church phone line, which we did. In the course of a few weeks nearly five dozen people stopped me in the halls of UPC or emailed me with words of appreciation for this offering. I was somewhat surprised that people in age groups other than seniors were listening. A request for a podcast soon followed. At the beginning of May, a Seattle radio station, AM 630 KCIS Radio picked it up for their Quiet Time program which reaches 50,000 listeners every weeknight.
Our audio ministry, Pray the Word, (PTW) is celebrating its 1 year anniversary on Jan. 13. PTW is a 4-minute recorded message with a few verses of scripture and a brief reflection on that scripture. As of today I have written and recorded 255 different scripts which are now heard every weekday on two telephone lines, online at www.upc.org/secondwind, and on AM 630 KCIS a local radio station. I've developed quite a "tribe" of listeners! What a ride! The Lord is good! So is VFA-- Thanks! ~ Ann
It was a cold but sunny morning in Bellevue, WA. I was driving down Highway 90E heading to my water aerobics class as I listened to Star 101.5 . As I was exiting the highway the moment I have been waiting for unexpectedly happened ! I heard Becky saying : "Rachel! Great to see you!" Becky was me! My first paid radio commercial. I couldn't believe my own ears. It was a rush ! I had found a gig a while back on Craig's List. A company was looking for a female voice talent. I responded to the ad but they replied that they had already found someone for the spot but that they really like the ranges in my voice and would keep me in their database. And then a couple months later without any action from my side I got the email: "Would you be interested in auditioning for a Sono Bello commercial? We found your VFA demos in our database and would like to hear you." I went to the audition which turned out to be a "non audition". We talked for a while and then the producer took me to their studio. In 10 minutes after 3 takes we had the spot recorded! It was amazing. Thank-you VFA for helping me get closer to my dream job!
2011 has been the most rewarding year to date for my voiceover career. I completed a project for my town of Apple Valley, CA called "State of the Town" which, as the name implies, gives the citizens a snapshot of where the town is economically and where it is headed. It is currently on their website, www.applevalley.org.
An even more rewarding experience was completing an audiobook entitled "Ace of Hearts" by internationally known author Jean Holloway. It was quite a challenging endeavour, however I loved doing it. Trying to do several character voices, some female, was the most difficult part. I worked with a great engineer locally and the author was very pleased. It is currently available on iTunes, CD Baby, and the author's website, www.deckofcardz.com.
I attached a small snippet. A sample is also available on my website, www.mrkeysvoices.com.
Thanks to what I learned at Voices for All for making this possible.
I completed the VFA Master Class in July of 2007. Upon returning home I quickly purchased my first Mac computer. I then ordered everything I needed to get started on my voiceover career. I converted my small extra bedroom into a studio and off I went. Learning Pro Tools was an adventure to say the least--as Paul can testify to--I was emailing him all the time. He was great! He was very patient with me and walked me through my learning curve.
Since then I've had a couple of clients from a large insurance company hire me for some of their OGM menus. That lasted for awhile but then moved-on. I've done some voiceover work on a couple very low budget personalized/family documentaries. Not much money but lots of experience was gained on the technology side. I began to realize that the technology used in audio and video recording appealed to me. I wrote, edited, and produced 2 DVD movies last year. I'm currently in the middle of the production phase of another family documentary with 2 more scheduled for later this year.
When I started my business 2007, I was focused on the voiceover aspect of the business. Though I continue to offer that element to my perspective clients, I've gravitated more to DVD movie production. I'm given family photos and home video and assemble the "raw" material into full-length DVD movies showing everything from family vacations to family genealogy documentaries. The documentaries are where I do much of my voiceover.
I have started gathering "still" photos and video recordings documenting the creation and transformation of a local national wildlife refuge. This particular project will take approximately a year and a half to complete (to capture the changing of the seasons). When completed, the hour-long DVD will be used to promote the refuge as well as a fund raiser for the youth wildlife program. I will be performing all the voiceover for this project in hopes of getting my voice "out there" a little more.
My life would have never taken this turn were it not for you folks at VFA. My girlfriend and I had a wonderful time when we went back in 2007. You showed me what could be. Your support after I returned home was "second to none". You were always there for me. You answered all my questions and offered advice which proved to be invaluable. No matter where my business takes me, I have you to thank for my new "life path". Thank you and keep up the good work!
Wishing you well!
Since I last talked to you I have done several commercials. I did one commercial for my husband's business on the radio last year; and he actually was called several times in one month. The producer said that I was a natural and did not make one mistake. I wrote my whole commercial. Then, last month , I did another radio commercial for my own tutoring business; and this producer also said that I was a natural and no mistakes. I Never get nervous. I have never had so much fun. My bank, friends, etc. have been trying to find me some more work. One of our friends just took my demo to his boss because he needed a voiceover commercial; but, he needed a man. He did say, however, that my demo knocked his socks off. He also said he would keep me in mind so that if anyone needed a woman's voice; he would call me. I have never had so much fun. Thank you for all the great fun training.
So far, I have done three commercials on the radio for my husband's welding business. The producer said I was a natural and I did not make any mistakes. It was so much fun. I did not get nervous; just had a ball. I love doing commercials and hope to do more eventually. Thank you all for your great help.
I got my first job! Andrea Langworthy, my VFA Master Teacher, was kind enough to refer me to a client, and I got my first job. I'm not sure what is more exciting- being successful at a voice-over, or knowing that people like Andrea at VFA really do back you up and do their best to nudge you forward into this business. Thank you, Andrea, for being a caring teacher. Thank you, VFA, for being a quality company.
Sorry for not being in touch but wanted to reach out to you and let you know that I am still plugging away with the voice over commitments. I am currently doing a Christian audio book and will be having it released at the end of summer, as well as the childrenâ€™s book due out in Fall.
Andrea and Paul,
Just a quick update on how things are going after my Voices For All Masters Class. It has taken about a year but persistence does pay off.
After numerous auditions and learning to listen really well to what I was submitting as an audition I finally landed my first job. It was small but it was a narration which I like. I have been getting some small narration jobs mostly for business presentations. Recently I auditioned for 2 national and 2 worldwide distribution documentary projects and placed 2nd and 3rd in the final rankings. That was certainly encouraging.
Meanwhile I was hired to do a large business narration for a Canadian company ($2,000). They were very pleased and asked if I would be interested in doing 4 or 5 more of these for them and of course I said yes! More encouragement! Another opportunity came when I placed 1st for hire for a narration with a worldwide charity ($4,000 job). The client eventually chose one of the other auditions but the producer was pleased enough with my audition that he is keeping it for future narration possibilities. Talk about a HIGH, then a LOW, then a HIGH!
So far I can say that it takes a great deal of patience, constant learning, self evaluation and self improvement. And updating and expanding my demos has been essential too.
Thanks to Voices for All and the Masters Class and your entire team.
Well, I left the seminar in summer 2008 all fired up to create a recording studio and start searching for voice over work. The economy began to unwind and the GM dealership where I worked laid me off. I managed to find work again, but for less pay and less hours. I put the project on hold. In September 2009 I found out about an audition with Washington Talking Books. I missed out on the one open position they had available in their talking books department; but they asked me to work instead at their radio station, Evergreen Radio Reading Service. Since December 2009, I have been producing, editing and recording a 30 minute program that is aired twice a week. The position is considered volunteer; but I have hopes that after my year commitment is complete, Ill have the experience and confidence to find voice over work that comes with a paycheck!