Fall in love with your voice. Get to know how it works. You will soon feel how good it is to sound like you.
In The Voice Exercise Book, Jeannette Nelson – Head of Voice at the National Theatre – shares the voice exercises she uses with many of Britain’s leading actors to help to keep their voices in shape. Her belief is that all of us, not just actors, can learn to use our voices well.
Whether you perform professionally or you just want to be understood clearly and easily, you can improve your voice by knowing how it works and by practising simple exercises. The aim is not to ‘fake it’ – to try to sound like someone else. It is to find your authentic voice: to be honestly and clearly you in any situation.
‘Jeannette’s warm-up sessions are tremendous and this book extends those exercises.’ Zoë Wanamaker CBE
‘Jeannette’s knowledge is astonishing, and her approach so gentle and effective.’ Derren Brown
‘She makes voice production endlessly fascinating and fun. There is no one better.’ Rory Kinnear
‘A must for anyone who is serious about producing a strong, clean noise from their voice box.’ Sir Lenny Henry
Also available: The Voice Exercise Book: The Warm-Ups (Audio CD), the ideal accompaniment to the book.
Blog Post: Jeannette Nelson on the challenges faced by theatre actors today: ‘Imagine if theatre actors still sounded like those in the 1940s and 1950s. We wouldn’t find that acceptable at all. The greatest demand for actors today is that audiences, and the actors and directors themselves, want dialogue on stage to sound as natural as it does in film and television.
‘Jeannette Nelson’s approach is very clear… if you don’t already have a book of voice exercise, I would recommend this one’
‘An attractive, unfussy book with very clear instructions… Nelson’s own voice is friendly but authoritative… definitely a book which could help teachers to manage both their own voices and voice development work with young people’
‘An excellent manual [which] will be indispensable to acting students and voice teachers alike’
Word Matters – Journal of the Society of Teachers of Speech and Drama