We are nothing without our dreams…
Samantha Paris is a multiple award-winning voice actor, acclaimed educator, entrepreneur and author of Finding the Bunny (Voice Haven Productions, 2018). She has several signature sayings that she incorporates into her teachings, amongst them: “We are nothing without our dreams”.
Samantha’s own single-minded dream of becoming an actress began as a little girl growing up in Southern California, under her given name, Bobbi Block. She began performing at the age of five, and took her first voice-over class at age fifteen. One year later, she landed an agent and thrillingly so, saw her fervent dreams take flight. Over the next twelve years, Samantha enjoyed a career that included over 1,000 national and regional commercials, roles in nearly 200 half-hour animated television cartoon shows, including the mega-hit cult series, Jem and the Holograms. She landed several leading appearances in episodic television and a starring role in the ABC After School Special, I Think I’m Having A Baby. She also had the distinct honor of starring with Michael Landon in a two-episode story line on Highway To Heaven.
But with all of her career success, including three Clio Awards, there was a voice inside Samantha telling her there had to be something more, though she couldn’t put her finger on exactly what that something more was. The only thing she knew for sure was that she had one major dream still unanswered: to live near the Golden Gate Bridge. Going purely on instinct and with no specific plan in place, she moved to the Bay Area in 1988 and bought a home in Mill Valley. Shortly thereafter, Samantha was unwittingly thrust into the teaching profession, giving voice-over lessons to budding voice actors—first one, then two, and then before she knew it, there were 30, then 40 students!
And so, Voicetrax San Francisco was formed one year later. The media world quickly caught on to what Samantha was doing, and featured her widely in media outlets throughout Northern California, including all major newspapers, the hugely popular Ronn Owens radio show (several appearances) and local television programs. In what seemed like the blink of an eye, students were multiplying and quite unexpectedly to her, Samantha had unconsciously created a groundbreaking training program and a flourishing business. By the time that the San Francisco Chronicle deemed her “the most successful voiceover coach in the Bay Area,” the Voicetrax San Francisco studio, built in 1992, was located in Sausalito, just minutes away from her beloved Golden Gate Bridge.
Samantha’s extensive media coverage not only caught the attention of new students, but also the ears of top San Francisco ad agency producers. They were excited to discover that there was a fresh pool of actors being developed here in the Bay Area, therefore eliminating the need to constantly go to Los Angeles to find voices for their projects. So, for nearly two decades, Voicetrax Casting was the number one go-to place in the Bay Area for producers to find the voices they needed. Her clients included: Chevron, Cisco, Visa, Macy’s, Toyota, Fisher Price, AT&T, Starbucks, Sony, Hewlett Packard, eBay and the list goes on and on.
Now, 31 years later, Voicetrax stands alone as the largest, most comprehensive and respected voice-over academy in the United States. With a rotating curriculum of nearly 100 different courses of study, Samantha and her distinguished team of guest directors help each student accomplish their unique goals. Over the years, Samantha has successfully trained more than 10,000 aspiring and working voice actors in the Bay Area. Her students represent people from all walks of life and backgrounds – many of whom have gone on to book voice-over jobs regularly to supplement their incomes, and many others who go on to make voice-over their full-time (and handsome) living.
With a fierce commitment to the philosophy that talent can be taught, Samantha built her hugely successful business strictly through enthusiastic word of mouth, substantial media attention and satisfied, longstanding voice acting students. Above all, through Voicetrax, Samantha has helped transform the lives of thousands through her one-of-a-kind process, helping people find their true voices and realize their dreams, no matter what those personal dreams are. And through this gratifying process, Samantha has ultimately realized her own deepest dreams.
To learn more about Samantha’s journey, read her memoir, Finding The Bunny – The secrets of America’s most influential and invisible art revealed through the struggles of one woman’s journey. www.findingthebunny.com