Voice is Physical

I’ve been having a lot of really challenging, and incredibly productive discussions lately with friends and colleagues, about what the voice is, how it is, why it is, and how I work with it, both as a teacher and as a performer.

In this little clip of students playing with ‘material essences’ they are exploring different movement qualities, the experience of moving in unaccustomed ways, and the effect that the physical movement qualities have on the voice itself, as it speaks.

You will see that the girls are all moving quite fluidly, with consistent qualities throughout their bodies, while the young man is doing something quite different. This is because David IS doing something different, he decided to explore a different technique, a physical quality he associated with a character he was exploring, and the result is a different learning experience.

Something else to think about: when the students begin to speak their text, they are not fully vocalising. This often happens at this stage in the exercise, when the actors are sub-consciously holding back, and as a result the text is denied full access to the voice. When you watch these next clips, you will immediately notice the difference.