The Art of Teaching Voice Acting

Voiceover teachers are the life blood of the future voice talents. And the teaching duo of Joan Baker and Pat Fraley, affectionately known as “Lola and Punkin Head,” have brought an entirely reinvigorated pulse to this craft, teaching together for nearly five years and boasting more than 50 years of combined teaching experience. Add to this, award winning performance careers across the spectrum of voice acting genres and you’ve got everything you could want as a student.  Their collaboration includes developing curricula for intimate master classes as well as the industry’s most esteemed VO conference, That’s Voiceover!

Their approach doesn’t stop with teaching the practical, real-world skills necessary to book jobs.  Their unique teaching style incorporates music, dance and sensory techniques to defuse fear and nervous tension in the students. The students also benefit from professionally recorded samples of their performances.  Joan & Pat are not satisfied to teach theory and then toss the students out of the nest. They help their students cultivate an exit strategy from the classroom to the professional world. They include meaningful producers, audiobook publishers, agents and casting directors as guest teachers.

“We seek out guest professionals from the highest ranks of our industry to teach with us. The value to the student is dramatically enhanced by engaging with professionals who are in a position to get them hired.” says Joan.

Guest teachers include Izhar Harpaz, producer for Dateline NBC, Aaron Blank , Executive Producer for Penguin Random House Audiobooks and Rudy Gaskins,  Chairman and CEO of the  Society of Voice Arts and Sciences.

Pat identifies a key theme in their approach. “Joan and I encourage all our students to be bold with their work. One of my favorite lines to encourage a student to be bold is, “Hey. Why not? They’re already not hiring you.”

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Kurt Myers

Kurt Myers is an opinionated, social media and voice industry expert. He has been involved in agency sales, marketing, and talent development for the past 9 years.