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On-Camera Coach by Karin M. Reed

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CHAPTER 4 V—Vocal Variety: Pacing and Pausing with Purpose

In seventh grade, one of my assignments for English class was to write an autobiography that included what I wanted to be when I grew up. I was not able to narrow it down to just one potential career, so I chose two: a news anchor and/or a Broadway star. Somehow along the way, I ended up starting off college as an accounting major, but in my sophomore year, I found my way back to my “true north” and changed my major to communications while continuing to sing wherever and whenever I could.

I started voice lessons in my tween years and continued with them right up to the birth of my second son in my early 30s. Nearly two decades of vocal training have deeply influenced my own delivery as well as how I teach others about how to use their voice effectively while presenting on camera.

The Musicality of Your Delivery—What's Your Range?

“Are any of you musicians?”

That's the first thing I ask my class when we start discussing the vocal element of performance success. With my musical background, I am predisposed to think in terms of vocal range, and I know that those who sing or play an instrument will likely speak my same language and have ears attuned to hearing the low and high notes in speech.

As a singer, I boast a fairly wide range: three octaves, which means I can sing all parts from alto to high soprano. When I speak, I tend to also use a wide range of pitches depending on what I'm saying. If I'm excited about something, ...

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