Dr. Wendy LeBorgne is a sought after voice pathologist, speaker, author, and master-class clinician regarding vocal wellness and vocal athletes. She maintains an elite private studio (ProVoice Consultants) and continues to perform professionally. Her patients and private students currently can be seen and hear on radio, TV, film, cruise ships, Broadway, Off-Broadway, national tours, commercial music tours and opera stages around the world. You can reach out to her at www.drwendy.me
She sat down for a podcast with Flair, which you can listen to on our media tab or iTunes, and shares these pointers for improving your speaking engagements.
Top 5 Tips for Practicing Vocal Presentations at Home:
- Be authentic (in your words, in your style) not ‘affected’. You know your product or service better than anyone out there. Maximize your strengths. Use your 2-minute elevator pitch to engage your audience and connect with them on a personal level. People remember how you make them feel more often than we remember the details of the conversation. (ex. sermon).
- Practice in front of a mirror. We make judgements about people based on what they look and sound like. If your body language is not congruent with what you are saying, your listeners will get mixed messages (ex. if you are excited & happy with your voice, but your arms are crossed and you are looking at the floor).
- Warm-up your voice before you speak. Consider your voice is like your knee, made up of cartilages, ligaments and muscles. You wouldn’t expect to perform your best in a race without stretching. Some simple vocal warm-ups you can do to stretch your voice include slides/glides and humming.
- Eliminate/Minimize ‘voice detractors.’ Just like watching someone talk to you with flailing arms can make it distracting to pay attention to anything else, there are certain ‘vocalisms’ that can be distracting to a listener. High pitch, nasality, hard glottal attacks, glottal fry, intensity (too loud or too soft), rate (too fast or to slow), instability. Also, prosody (patterns & intonational stress within a language).
- Explore your voice. Just like an athlete you may not recognize your full potential until you work with a trainer. The highs, lows, loud, soft and everything in between. Because your voice is a multifactorial, emotionally hard-wired part of YOU, sometimes an expert can help you hone your skills and maximize your vocal power.