When you hear your voice on a recording, what first comes to mind? Would you say that your voice is wimpy, weak or too soft? Perhaps it is throaty, raspy or hoarse. Do you find it higher in pitch than you thought? Maybe you sound too young. You may find it breathy or whispery or the exact opposite – strident and shrill. Does it sound nasal and whiny like that of Fran Drescher? Perhaps it is reedy, heavy, dull or loud. |
There are various words which can describe the voice. You may feel that several terms are apt descriptions. The question is what you can do about it. You are not stuck with the voice you hear on your answering machine because you actually possess a better one inside of you. I am not talking figuratively. I am talking literally.
When I was studying music composition in graduate school, one of my professors told me that my speaking voice was too high in pitch (pitch refers to the highness or lowness of sound) and that my real voice was deeper in pitch. I had no idea what she was talking about but when I heard my lower, richer voice, I knew that I wanted to keep that sound. So, I practiced using my ‘real’ voice as much as possible and it soon became a habit.
What did I do differently to produce that better voice? I used my chest cavity as my primary sounding board when I spoke. I certainly hadn’t been speaking in that manner prior to that particular class. My habitual voice was not only higher in pitch but it lacked resonance and was thin and young-sounding. By changing how I placed my sound, my voice suddenly sounded mature. And, it later got me the jobs I was seeking in New York City.
Whatever terms you may have used to describe your speaking voice, the good news is that by changing your voice placement, all of those characteristics mentioned in the 1st paragraph will be gone. No, you do not need a different exercise for each of those problems. Use your chest cavity and those problems are solved. It is truly stunning to see how this works
Because the majority of the population produces voice sound primarily by the throat and voice box, then it is probably safe to assume that you are presently powering your voice in the same manner. This results in a sound which is higher in pitch and lacking in resonance. Add your chest cavity to the picture, however, and you will be amazed at the results.
The Voice Lady, Nancy Daniels, offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice and presentation skills as well as Voicing It! the only video training on voice improvement. If you would like to see a dramatic ‘before & after’ clip, visit Nancy’s Voice Training Website and check out Craig’s video.
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