Voice and the Actor An actor’s most important instrument!
FOUR PROCESSES OF SPEECH • Respiration • Phonation • Resonation • Articulation
THREE ways of making air flow into the lungs • Chest cavity must be expanded to make air flow into the lungs, which can be accomplished using THREE methods: • First – the collarbones (or clavicles) can be raised, allowing a small amount of air into the tops of lungs. • Second – the rib cage can be expanded like a bellows, bringing in a larger quantity of air. • Third, the diaphragm can be contracted, drawing in the largest quantity of air all the way to the bottom of the lungs. • *Diaphragmatic breathing is the MOST effective for use by actors, singers and those who play wind instruments.
MULTI-TASKING! • Speech is often referred to as an OVERLAID function • All of the parts of the vocal anatomy have another, primary function: • Teeth, tongue, and jaw are used for eating • Lungs, trachea, nasal cavities are used for breathing
FOUR properties of TONE • Strength • Pitch • Time • Quality
Manipulating your Resonators…oh my! • You can manipulate your tone by working different muscles within your mouth, throat and jaw. • It’s important to have relaxed throat muscles and a limber jaw to increase the size of two resonators: the pharynx and the oral cavity. Increased size yields greater resonance.
Regulating Strength of Voice • Use the DIAPHRAGM! • Tightening the throat muscles, for example, will change the strength of your voice but will also wear out the vocal folds.
VOCAL QUALITIES • NORMAL • ORAL (letter L) • NASAL (letter N) • GUTTURAL (letter G) • ASPIRATE (letter H) • OROTUND
Warm-Up your RESONATOR as an actor • A (pronounced ah) • ah - zah - ah - zah - ah - zah - ah • bah - yah - bah - yah - bah - yah - bah • cah - xah - dah - xah - cah - xah - cah • dah - wah - dah - dah - gah - dah - gah • E (pronounced eh) • feh - veh - feh - veh - feh - veh - feh • geh - teh - geh - teh - geh - teh - geh • heh - seh - heh - seh - heh - seh - heh • jeh - reh - jeh - reh - jeh - reh - jeh
I (pronounced ee) • kee - nee - kee - nee - kee - nee - kee • lee - mee - lee - mee - lee - mee - lee • mee - lee - mee - lee - mee - lee - mee • nee - kee - nee - kee - nee - kee - nee • O (pronounced oh) • poh - joh - poh - joh - poh - joh - poh • roh - hoh - roh - hoh - roh - hoh - roh • soh - goh - soh - goh - soh - goh - soh • toh - foh - toh - foh - toh - foh - toh • U (pronounced oo) • voo - doo - voo - doo - voo - doo - voo • woo - coo - woo - coo - woo - coo - woo • yoo - boo - yoo - boo - yoo - boo - yoo • zoo - oo - zoo - oo - zoo - oo - zoo
Now your ARTICULATOR • Top of the day. Tip top. Tippity toppity snip snop. • Babbling, Ben brought Babs to behave badly. • David tried drying tomatoes daily, due to Dina's tremendous diet. • Paul pruned Penelope's pansies leaving Penelope perplexed. • Mable had a maple tree. Mable's maple tree didn't make maple syrup for Mable. Is Mable's maple unable?
Twenty little leopards laughed at two lofty lions. • Imagine having an imaginative imagination. • Many mice are mighty mice. • Thirty-three times three plus one is me. • Sure, Sally sold sixty shells at the sea's shore, but Sue sold seventy seven! Sally, surprised at Sue's success, screamed and shouted seventeen times; "Sue's shells are shabby! Sally's shells are chic!" Sue said to Sally, "Say what?" Then Sue shouted, "Sally sold sixty six shells, so she's upset. Sorry for shouting!"
Taking care of your vocal instrument • Drink PLENTY of water – keeps tissues in your mouth moist and cuts down on extraneous “mouth noise” (noise in between words or sentences that inadvertently occur with a dry, dehydrated mouth) • Get PLENTY of rest • AVOID smoke and alcohol • Take care of your sinuses • Get plenty of exercise – regular cardio improves lung function, which will improve breathing and vocal function • If it HURTS – STOP! Try to avoid straining voice, and find other ways to resonate.