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How Does Physicality Play Into Voice Work?


By Stephanie Ciccarelli

March 22, 2011

Comments (8)

Athletic woman doing a push up outdoorsHave you ever considered just how much is involved in voice over work?

When you think about all that is involved in just simply speaking, you'll note that voice acting can be quite the workout!

Learn more by reading Canadian voice over coach Bob Cook's article via today's VOX Daily.

The Physicality of "Voice" Work!

By Bob Cook

Whether you're a 30-year veteran or a beginner looking through the windows of your first voice-over studio, the act of voicing out loud is "PHYSICAL." Here is what I mean. To read something out loud you need your EYES to see, THE MIND to understand, THE MOUTH so that the words have somewhere to come out of. THE TONGUE so that you can say the words, the LUNGS so there is air for the words to float out onto and finally there are your EARS for you to hear what you are doing.

That's a total of 6 different body parts that must go together to make "a voice over happen." Now all of us use these body parts all the time in many different ways but it's when we put these 6 together to read out loud that the challenge begins.

A 30-year veteran doesn't have to consciously think about how these 6 body parts work together and because they don't, they are able to make a living doing voice work. But for those of you who are just beginning you have to be made aware that voice work is "physicality" first. All these body parts have to be working together so that they don't "sound" like they're working at all.

If you want to exercise your bicep and make it more efficient you have to "exercise." The mouth has about 43 muscles and if you want your mouth to be efficient then you have to "exercise" it. So begin by picking up a magazine-newspaper-script-bible something that has words printed on it. Begin by reading out loud for 15 minutes everyday for the rest of your life.

Daunting yes, but it will change your life when it comes to doing voice work.

Bob Cook

About Bob Cook

Bob Cook is a 30 year veteran in the field of audio production and is currently offering hands on one-on-one coaching sessions at Ta-Da! Voiceworks in Toronto as well as through Skype for those outside the Toronto area. He can be reached at coaching@tadavoiceworks.com.

©iStockphoto.com/Suprijono Suharjoto

Related Topics: Bob Cook, coach, exercise, muscles, physicality, reading, Ta-Da! Voiceworks, Tanya Buchanan, Toronto, voice, work


    43 muscles - amazing! And all the others... writhing around, making faces, pointing at the ceiling, wedging a finger in the mouth - whatever extracts the right sound. A producer working with me through Skype last week was amazed to see this, and wanted to take a YouTube video! I had to assure him it is normal, and necessary.

    Posted by:

      Always work out your voice. I go throught the key words for some of my impersonations from low like Henry Kissinger to high like Dr. Ruth that works for me.

      Posted by:

        Great, thanks!
        The usage of our voice is part of our body, mind and soul:)
        Exercise it, enjoy it, communicate with it and let it rest sometimes!

        Posted by:

          Great point that simply talking is not truly exercising the mind/mouth/eye connection. Reading out loud makes a lot more sense as a complete exercise.

          Posted by:
          • Ogre
          • April 11, 2011 5:05 PM

            Thanks so much. I do neck stretching exercises to keep my neck from getting stiff....so now I can add this to my new morining routine.
            Thank you Bob

            Posted by:

              Wow - just this week I mentioned to my mom how physicality played a part in doing voice work. This article was perfect, helpful!

              Posted by:
              • Cynthia Baker
              • April 12, 2011 12:40 PM

                Wow I read the article and went the website. I clicked under the talents and I did not know Eileen Ross is with them. I see her name in animation.

                Posted by:
                • Tia Tanika
                • April 21, 2011 10:12 AM

                  WOAH...was with my new voice coach for the first time today. He is NO JOKE! My upper body feels like I've been BENCH PRESSING, and that's just from changing the way I breathe?! Talk about PHYSICALITY! Not complaining, just glad that this fellow KNOWS what he is doing. Got A LOT of work ahead of me, but it's FUN stuff! Peace.

                  Posted by:
                  • GR Johnson
                  • April 21, 2011 10:13 AM

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