Performance: Vocal Performance Skills

Performance: Vocal Performance Skills

Vocal Performance Skills for Characterisation and Performance

Voice Basics

  • Clarity: Articulation is pivotal when delivering lines. Understand and practise pronunciation, enunciation and diction to make sure your audience doesn’t miss a word.
  • Volume: Speaking loud enough for everyone to hear is essential. However, consider modifying your volume to emphasise different moods and emotions.
  • Pace: The speed at which you deliver your lines can greatly influence their impact. Delivering your lines too quickly might make them hard to understand, while speaking slowly can add weight and significance.

Advanced Vocal Techniques

  • Pitch: This refers to the highness or lowness of your vocal tone. Using different pitches can help to convey a range of emotions and character traits.
  • Tone: The quality of your voice can indicate different emotions. Experiment with different tones - harsh, soft, angry, or loving, to name a few - to enhance your characterisation.
  • Inflection: This is where your voice rises and falls in pitch. Inflection can help make your speech sound more natural and expressive.
  • Pausing: Strategic use of silence can be powerful in performance. Pausing can create suspense, allow moments for characters and audience to react, or bring attention to a pivotal line.

Preparation Techniques

  • Vocal Warm Ups: These help prepare the voice for performance and prevent vocal strain. They usually involve exercises that help increase control, flexibility and range.
  • Breathing: Practice controlling your breath to help maintain vocal strength and stability. Breathing can also help you manage nerves during performance.
  • Projection: Practice throwing your voice to reach larger audiences, ensuring all interaction is clear. This should be controlled and not strain the vocal cords.

Acting and Characterisation

  • Emotion: Remember to express your character’s feelings through your voice. Vary your vocal skills to reflect the emotions in different parts of the script.
  • Characterisation: Consider how your character’s age, status, background, and emotional state might affect their voice. Would they be likely to stutter, have a particular accent, or speak in a distinctive manner?