Welcome to the March 2018 edition of the Sarah Ellis Coaching Career Inspo Blog!
This is a monthly interview with someone who has followed their passion, dreamed big and now has a successful and exciting career. Whether you are searching for your passion or looking for guidance and insight from those in your chosen industry, the Career Inspo blog will have something for everyone. From Chief Executives, to inventors, from property moguls to artistic entrepreneurs, the 2018 line up is certainly set to provide plenty of inspiration and motivation!
This month I interviewed Louise Jones, professional Voice Coach. Louise has been working as a freelance voice and accent coach for five years, and splits her time between top London Drama Schools, film, television and theatre productions. Louise’s work includes ITV’s drama Little Boy Blue , and she has recently worked with the talented actress Tamsin Greig!
Sarah Ellis: Thank you for taking the time to be interviewed for the March edition of my Career Inspo Blog, Louise! Please can you start by telling the readers why you chose to pursue this particular career?
Louise Jones: I discovered voice work during my undergraduate degree in Drama, Applied Theatre and Education at London’s Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. It sparked something inside me and I didn’t stop pursuing it until I got on the MA Voice at RCSSD to train in the specialism.
SE: What was your route into this career?
LJ: Because my undergraduate was at a drama school I had the right environment to talk to members of staff and other voice students who were training on the MA degree I wanted to be on.
After my undergraduate I spent time teaching in summer schools, youth theatre and directing. I then took the plunge and applied for the MA in Voice. I got on in 2012 and started my journey!
SE: What makes you jump out of bed in the morning to come to work and what are your favourite things about what you do?
LJ: New clients, new productions and new accents to teach. The adrenaline is a good thing when you’re walking into a new job!
SE: What have been your biggest challenges and learning curves?
LJ: In my early days of freelancing, I spent all my time in small drama schools teaching speech and accent work. It was tough as there was often no contract. As a result, employers would trim my hours. And sometimes classes may be cut completely for budget reasons. When that happened, I’d have to keep hustling and searching for new work. I could never rest on my laurels!
LJ: In 2017, I signed to my agent. This opportunity has opened up doors into film, television and theatre work, which has been thrilling and inspiring. A few months ago, I got the chance to work with my favourite actress, Tamsin Greig. After those sessions, I was on cloud nine! My dream profession could lead me to work with some wonderful people.
SE: What key strengths do you have that make you great at what you do?
LJ: I’m an excellent listener. I’m also obsessive when it comes to new accents.
SE: Do you have a role model or mentor? If so, what have you learnt from them that has helped you in your business/overall career?
LJ: I would not be where I am today without Jan Haydn Rowles. She offered to be my mentor after my MA degree. We spent a year working together. She kept challenging me and pushing me. It transformed my skills set. She made me excellent at what I do.
SE: What advice would you give someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
LJ: Investigate the world of voices around you. Be a bit obsessive (!) and work hard during your training.
SE: What are the top three things to consider when choosing and pursuing a meaningful and exciting career?
LJ: 1) Be passionate – you have to enjoy what you’re doing!
2) Do you have the skills required? – Take a good look at what you offer, do you have the appropriate talent to take the career on?
3) Be focused – where do you want to take your passion? Where do you see yourself?