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Voice Artist at Work! September 23, 2009

Posted by lyndastucky in Communication, Uncategorized.
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I can’t think of a better job!  Getting paid to record my voice speaking into a microphone.  I can adjust my pitch up to sound like a little girl, use shorter syllables to sound angry and curt, add breathiness to add sex appeal, lower my pitch to add power.  So many voices in one small voice box!

 Have you ever thought about the sound of your voice? What does it say about you – do you sound powerful, weak, kind, mean? The voice is capable of conveying emotion in a way that words alone cannot. Voiceover artists are experts at changing the resonance, volume, rate and pitch of their voice to accommodate a variety of characters and situations.

This video is a great example of this – watch Seth MacFarlane as he voices several of the characters from ‘Family Guy’. 

Nearly one year ago, Don LaFontaine died after a long career of doing voiceovers and being the voice the movie industry doing movie trailers.  Instinctively, he was a genius at figuring out the right voice for the part with his deep, powerful voice aiding him.   

Not all of us were born with the rich, resonant voice of Don LaFontaine or James Earl Jones but we can learn to alter some of the characteristics of speech and voice to make positive impressions.  Here are some tips for having a people-friendly tone of voice. 

  1. Lengthen the vowel sounds of stressed syllables.
  2. Speak slowly!
  3. Add pitch variation to convey interest and enthusiasm.
  4. Smile. (This one act alone can help you sound more engaging and approachable to your listeners.)

Even when you don’t feel friendly, you can act friendly by modifying these speech and voice characteristics.  You can change your voice in many ways to reflect a mood or an attitude.  Experiment with your voice frequently; you too can be a voice artist—a helpful skill for many situations!

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