"Believe in yourself, have confidence, and ENJOY the experience" - Ann Kirzl, Voice-Over Talent
Ann Kirzl is the kind of voice talent that everyone employer hopes for. Why? Because she truly enjoys it. For Ann, it's not so much about the money, but more about the pure enjoyment she gets from getting to be in the studio and pursue something she really loves.
Like many voice talents, however, it took some encouragement from Ann's friends and acquaintances for her to finally decide that voice-overs was a field she really wanted to learn more about. It was at this point that Ann decided to take Dan Levine's class, "You're On the Air: How to Really Make it in Voice-Overs". "Receiving positive encouragement from Dan Levine," Ann stated, "made me take the idea more seriously," and Ann decided to sign up for training with Such A Voice. Not only did this training provide Ann with tangible tools, such as her professional demo, to start her career in the voice-over industry, but it also provided her with a stronger belief in her own talent. Ann commented that, "going through the process of coaching and training with John Billingsley helped me to have confidence in my ability."
For Ann, this self-assurance began by simply making the choice to do something for herself and pursue something she found both interesting and exciting. Because Ann had training, she was able to not only have the confidence to get the job but also the confidence when she entered into the studio to record her first professional spot. Once she arrived at the studio, she realized that the entire experience was "EXACTLY" what she had expected, and this was due to the fact that her training had prepared her for that moment. She reflected that, "I knew that I was there to deliver what the client wanted, not what I thought was best" and she, "knew not to take the suggestions or criticism personally." By watching John Billingsley in her own demo session, she knew that repetition was a good thing and not necessarily requested because you are not delivering the line well. To sum it up, one of the essential factors in Ann's success was the way in which she responded to and absorbed the lessons taught in her training. Ann commented that, "everything I learned and experienced through Such A Voice helped me to be flexible, resilient, and confident when hired for a real job."
Since completing her training with Such A Voice a little over a year ago, Ann has really applied her new-found confidence and started to make a name for herself in the Vermont market where she lives, landing jobs with major Vermont companies Allen Kitchen and Bath and Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC) which is Vermont's largest educational loan provider. Utilizing her voice which Ann describes as "best when conversational, sincere, and believable," Ann has been able to bring a sound to her employers which many voice artists are unable to achieve because they are over-acting. This reality is achievable in Ann's reads because, as she states, "the 'product' makes sense to me." Therefore, she is able to connect with the listener and tell them about something that she understands. This is also the advantage that Ann has with working in her own local market - she has a familiarity with the businesses she is marketing herself to. Even though Ann views her voice-over career right now as more of a secondary job, she does believe that if she really puts the effort into marketing herself, she will have an impressive and strong resume in the next few years.
And why shouldn't she? It seems that success comes easily to those who love what they do. One thing that Ann loves most about being a voice-over artist is being called "the talent". There is an inherent confidence that comes from hearing those two words. But more importantly, Ann loves knowing that these two words mean that she is very important to someone else's business. The responsibility this career gives to Ann, knowing that she needs to do an excellent job in order for the client to make a profit, is at the heart of why she enjoys voice-overs.
So how has Ann gained success in her market? Simple, she stays in touch with people so she is not forgotten. Her own personal mantra for success is to put the amount of effort into marketing herself as she hopes to see in the results. She also knows that belief in herself is essential to both getting the work and providing a good product for the client. Ann remarked that it is easy when you are in the studio to let the reaction of the producers dictate your confidence. "When I deliver what they want, it's the greatest feeling...when I can't seem to get a line right, I wonder if I'm cut out for this work." What is comes down to, however, is having the self-assurance to know that is will all come together. It is at that point in the process, when it does all come together, that Ann can assert her talent and brilliance, because, truth be told, "it's tough to sound conversational on the radio."
So what does Ann advise to those looking to start their own voice-over careers? "Believe in yourself, have confidence, and ENJOY the experience." Ann has!
To listen to Ann's demo or learn more about her voice-over career, you can visit her Voice Fact page at http://www.myvodemo.com/such/index.cfm?world=2957