Special Guest: Simone Fojgiel

This week Anne and Gabby interview a bilingual power-house! Simone Fojgiel is an award-winning, influencer, trend-setter, muse, coach and friend to countless Spanish and American voiceover actors. In this episode she takes us on a spiritually enlightened journey; from her Uruguay radio origins to her humble view from the top as one of the world’s most loved (and heard) Spanish voice actors. We talk voiceover, cosmic law and about Simone’s relationship with singer/songwriter James Taylor!



Takeaways

Quick Concepts from Today’s Episode:

  1. English is the global language of business

  2. Latin American voice actors will become stuck if they don’t strive to speak and write English fluently

  3. You must negotiate jobs in the same terms as your client

  4. It’s important to be a visionary in your career

  5. We are living in a world of high segmentation – excel in one thing – especially in voiceover

  6. Conferences make a huge impact in your career

  7. There’s always something to learn by looking with the ‘eyes of a beginner’

  8. Surround yourself with people who know more than you so you can learn from them

  9. Spanish speaking voiceover actors are doing wonderful things and want to compete with the same conditions as their American colleagues


Referenced in this Episode

Direct links to things we brought up ++


Simone’s Website
More info on ipDTL

Transcript

Announcer: Today’s voice over talent is more than just a pretty voice. Today’s voiceover talent has to be a boss, a VO BOSS. Set yourself up with business owner strategies and success with you host Anne Ganguzza along with some of the strongest voices in our industry. Rock your business like a boss, a VO BOSS.

Gabby: Hey, guys. It’s Gabby. Before we get started on today’s show, we want to tell you a little bit about all the ways that you can live the BOSS life.

Anne: We have a brand-new product in our BOSS shop called Book-Out Build.

Gabby: This is how I communicate with my clients every single month to make sure that I’m providing them with relevant information that they can actually use and so that I’m not just, you know, spamming them or sending them something really annoying, right, because we all have to worry about that.

Anne: [laughs] You can do this on a monthly basis or a quarterly basis. What’s really cool is we incorporate your own list, and we manage it and send out the marketing blast on your behalf, all in your own brand.

Gabby: You want to go to voboss.com, click on shop, and go check out the Book-Out Build and Book-Out Blast features.

Anne: OK now, let’s get on with today’s episode. Welcome, everybody, to the VO BOSS podcast. I’m your host, Anne Ganguzza, along with my VO BOSS bestie, Gabby Nistico. Hey, Gabby.

Gabby: Hello.

Anne: Gabby, I am always so excited when we have a super special BOSS guest on, and today, we have an amazing, amazing lady boss. Welcome to the show Simone Fojgiel.

Simone: Hola.

Anne: Yay! Simone, finally, we were able to get you on for a show. [laughs] You are one busy lady. [laughs]

Simone: Yes, like you girls.

Anne: Any day, but you are busy —

Simone: Any day. Every hour.

Anne: I always say is a good day if you own your own business, for sure.

Simone: Oh, I agree 100%.

Anne: I’ve known you for quite some time now, quite a few years. I mean, I’m trying to think. At least six years or so, right?

Simone: Or so.

Anne: Or so, and I think Gabby as well. Right? We’ve known you for a long time.

Gabby: Oh gosh, longer than that.

Anne: Right? And I’ll tell you, I am a fan girl. Um having watched you over the years just evolve into this powerhouse in the VO community, in the Spanish community, just in general. So for those listeners that may or may not be familiar with, with your history, tell us a little bit about your entry into voiceover and how you’ve come to have evolved to be this lady boss of the day.

Simone: It was through music. Music is my real passion, actually. Umm I was playing live on a, on a pub with the keyboards. You know, I play keyboard since I was four by a year, and someone discovered me from a very well known FM station in Montevideo. That is the city where I was born. And he invited me to go to the station to do some pilots, and of course it was horrible.

[others laugh]

Simone: I realized, I realized that radio was much more beautiful than I expected, from the inside part. To make the story short, I ended up recording a song for a radio show that I was a big fan of um on another station, and the owner of that station bought the rights, the copyrights, of that song so they could play it every single day for that show. They loved the song, and they invited me to do some other pilots. Like we say in Spanish, la tercera es la vencida. That means, you try to the third time, and that is the very last one. Right?

Anne: Third time’s the charm. Yup.

Simone: Professor at the University where, that I was attended, studying social and mass communications, discovered me, and he told me that, you know, I should visit this station that is going — it was going to be a brand-new station in the country. And he referred me to the owner, and I did pilots for about three, four months, until I was ready. Of course I wasn’t ready.

Anne: [laughs]

Simone: It was a disaster. And that’s how I started being a live, a live host, presenting my favorite music. And I, I needed to record commercials as well, and I was very lucky because I was surrounded by people who really knew a lot about voiceover and radio broadcasting. Even though I, I quit my role at the station back in 2005, I still keep a wonderful, wonderful relationship with the company. Just to give you an idea, a couple of days ago I spoke with the owner of the station for about an hour and a half. Every time I fly to Uruguay, I go there to visit them, and we have lunch together. And, and the radio, as a media, means a lot to me. I am a big lover of radio broadcasting, and the fact that I could combine both music with mass media, with my studies and everything, helped me a lot to build a very good musical ear for voiceovers. I learned everything by myself, by ear, everything, how to play the piano, how to sing, how to do voiceovers. So I thank God every day for this particular gift he gave me.

Gabby: So as a kid, were you — this must have been really everything for you was literally just hearing, and repeating, and doing. So when it came to learn English, was it the same process you?

Simone: Yes. My parents were very visionners, and they told me, “you know, you need to learn how to speak English,” and I realized, of course, that they were so, so right because the younger you are, the most moldable, the easier it is for you to learn new skills. Um and I started learning English when I was seven. And I was even an exchange student here in the States for a year. And that helped me a lot because the, the English that I learned was the British one. So you know, instead of saying eraser at, at high school when I was an exchange student back in the time in Massachusetts and then in New York, instead of eraser, I said rubber.

[others laugh]

Simone: I had a lot of problems.

Anne: Oh, that must have been fun in high school.

Gabby: Yeah.

Anne: [laughs]

Gabby: Kids are so forgiving.

Anne: Aren’t they? [laughs]

Simone: But that, that helped me a lot, you know, to land into a brand-new dimension about the language, and definitely it opened me a lot of doors for my profession. Just to give you an idea, when I was working at this FM station in Uruguay, Océano FM — Ocean FM, I had, I was very lucky to be the person assigned to cover concerts. So when James Taylor came to Uruguay, I was the one who spent most of the time with him. I was like his shadow, and even went to the port because he was going to Buenos Aires afterwards. And I went to the port especially to say goodbye to him. And, and you know, he even gave me his phone number. And I ended up calling him.

Anne: Wow.

Gabby: Wow.

Anne: Now that’s impressive. [laughs] And then what happened? No. [laughs]

Simone: Nothing, nothing.

Anne: That’s fantastic. [laughs]

Simone: He had, he knew, he knew I was going to New York two months after we met, and he gave me his phone number in case I would like to make an interview.

Gabby: mm-hmm.

Simone: Anyhow, English opened me many, many doors, both are covering events like this, and also to build my global career. And that is something that I keep on telling all, all voice actors from Latin America and Spain, to my, to my students. “If you don’t speak and write English properly, you are going to be stuck, because English is the language of business.”

Gabby: mmm.

Anne: mm-hmm.

Simone: And that’s the way it is, like it or not. And if you want to succeed, no matter if you are 50, no matter if you are 30, no matter if you are 25, you n