Acting Exercises for the Voice
Ask A Healer Creativity Articles
The Actors' Voice - Expressing Truthfully. Power Connection Acting Exercises for Vocal Flexibility
This e-class, copyright, by N J Howell
There is a quality to the voice when it is speaking truth; there is another quality when the voice is lying or pretending. Unless the character you are portraying is supposed to be lying or pretending, you'd better know how to summon reality into your words on stage or in front of the camera. Otherwise, you will quickly lose the audience. Let's do some vocal exercises now! I'll ask you to do the same exercise three different ways, each building on the other.
ACTING EXERCISE 1: VOCAL TRAINING OBSERVATION
Warm up by using your voice, making sounds but no words, using the tempos suggested below. by the way, this type of vocal workout is good for scenes involving incoherent speech that doesn't sound like an actor trying to talk gibberish. The sort of vocal flexibility this type of exercise may help an actor develop is what enabled Steve Carrell, as Evan Baxter in the film Bruce Almighty, to create one of the most funny scenes I've ever seen in my entire life.
You know the scene, in Bruce Almighty .... where Steve is live on the air, announcing the news, so proud of just being named co-anchor. Just as Baxter is basking in his own glory, Bruce Almighty takes over Evan Baxter's vocal cords and makes Evan start saying all this garbled gibberish. Steve Carell did a brillant job with this, and created what I consider a classic comic masterpiece scene. Hilarious. While Steve may have made it look easy in Bruce Almighty, I assure you that verbal flexibility and improv of that sort is not easy at all for most people.
Warm up Tempos:
Because we are such a verbal, mentally oriented society, this exercise may be surprisingly challenging for some of you. If you find you simply can't just make any old sound that comes out, which is what we're aiming for here, then pick a word like "puh" or "luh" or "gru" and do the exercise above.
ACTING EXERCISE 2: VOCAL WORKOUT FOR EMOTION
Anger, loneliness, fear, joy, excitement, tenderness, pain, sorrow, disbelief, confusion, stress, importance, ignorance, love, etc.
If you wanta take this a step further, pick a sentence that is the total opposite of what you are feeling and express it. A great deal of comedy comes from saying one thing and meaning another. A lot of great drama is the same. If you are in love with someone and they tell you they are marrying someone else (a common theme), if you really love them, you may try to act happy for them. You may say good things. And ..... your body and voice will betray the truth.
ACTING EXERCISE 3: COMBINING PHYSICAL AND EMOTIONAL
Continue with the class.......Acting Lesson Four - The Actor's Emotions