On my bookshelf

  • "The Breathing Book" by Donna Farhi
  • "Confessions of a Public Speaker" by Scott Berkun
  • "My Freshman Year" by Rebekah Nathan
  • "Power Presentation" by Patsy Rodenburg

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tongue work unveiled

For all of you out there who have been diligently doing your tongue work, you will be pleased to see the exercise in action. A new documentary film about Kristin Linklater's work has been released and on her website there are now a few excerpts. If you click on the final video you will witness the tongue exercise and soft palate work in action.

Go to Media Gallery, Workshop Videos:


Linklater Voices

From my old stomping grounds comes an interview that beautifully articulates the benefits of Linklater training. Kristin Linklater is the author of "Freeing the Natural Voice", one of the first books I recommend to students who are looking at exploring their voices. If you are at all interested, read this interview first, as it gives examples of some of the tangible results Linklater trained actors experience and the underlying reasons behind many vocal issues.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

From the Heart

Heading into last week I had a sinus infection, a sick child and husband, and a completely full schedule of workshops. The thought of making it through the week in one piece was unfathomable. Then on Tuesday afternoon, in the midst of my racing around like a crazy person, I walked into a beautiful classroom in downtown Vancouver with gorgeous windows looking out on the first sunny days in weeks and met such an extraordinary group of individuals I was literally brought to tears.

Jo Lemay and I had met in a similar classroom about a year ago for a private session and little did we both know that that was the beginning of a new journey for each of us. Hers was that of exploring voice, giving herself permission to command attention and mine was connecting with her inspiring students. The Certificate in Community Capacity Building guides participants in the process of creating a community program that will help make their community stronger. The stories that people shared were heart-breaking testimonials to the strength of the human spirit and the necessity of both community and service in the role of healing. Each participant brought an honesty, passion and vulnerability to their presentations that was truly riveting. Half way through the program it hit me that in voicing their vulnerability I was able to comprehend what incredible strength each person possesses. These individuals were living proof of Emerson's observation that, "Our strengths grow out of our weakness." They were also clear reminders of what Kahil Gilbran noted, "It is better...to have a heart without words than words without a heart." He was referring to prayer but I recognized that it is just as appropriate for communication.

The Certificate in Community Capacity Building is designed specially for individuals "who experience systemic barriers to post-secondary education." Yet, it was here, in this unique space that I heard the most rich sounds I have ever heard in a classroom. As we experimented with different tones, harmonies of exquisite beauty filled the room.

I am a firm advocate of technique, but without the heart it means nothing.

So the question I pose for you is, "How do you add heart to your presentations or your practice?"