The Elevated Stage: Vocal Warm Up for Non-Singing Actors, Performers, and Public Speakers | Britney Verria | Skillshare

The Elevated Stage: Vocal Warm Up for Non-Singing Actors, Performers, and Public Speakers

Britney Verria, Performer. Director. Teaching Artist.

The Elevated Stage: Vocal Warm Up for Non-Singing Actors, Performers, and Public Speakers

Britney Verria, Performer. Director. Teaching Artist.

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5 Lessons (11m)
    • 1. TES Vocal Warm Up Introduction

    • 2. Breath

    • 3. Annunciation

    • 4. Resonance

    • 5. Putting It Together

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About This Class

Creating this class, I have endeavored to teach the vocal warm ups that I have used for years as a professional theatre actor, an audiobook narrator, and a theatre teaching artist. In addition to breaking down the fundamental necessities for a vocal warm up, I also offer ideas for teaching these warm up tools to adult and child actors alike!

Meet Your Teacher

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Britney Verria

Performer. Director. Teaching Artist.


Hello, I'm Britney! I am a New England based professional theatre performer, director, and teaching artist. In addition to over a decade's worth of experience in this field, I hold a BA in Theatre Studies from Ithaca College as well as a Theatre Teaching Certificate for grades K-12 from the Rhode Island Department of Education. Outside of my passion for my performing arts career, I also enjoy knitting and sketching as hobbies :)

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1. TES Vocal Warm Up Introduction: Hi there and welcome to the elevated stage vocal warm-up for non singing actors, performers, and public speakers. My name is Britney varia and professional theater director, performer and teaching artist. And these lessons I will focus on the four areas of a great vocal warm-up, breath, annunciation, resonance, and putting it all together. I've designed this course to assist actors, performers, and public speakers who are not singers to have a simple yet effective warm-up routine. Additionally, It is a great tool for directors, especially those of child actors, to have in their back pocket. In the videos, I will share some tips for how to teach these techniques to children as well. As always if you have any questions, feel free to reach out. Visit Brittany and click the contact page. Alright, let's get started. 2. Breath: Let's start this breath. I would recommend that before beginning of vocal warm-up, you warm up your body with jumping jacks running in place or some other simple movement to wake up your lungs and energize your breath. Now, let's do some diaphragmatic breathing. This just means taking a nice deep breath. Your shoulders should not raise up and down. Instead, you should feel your lower abdomen expanding and contracting as seen in this picture. Here's a video to help. You may even notice the breath feel like it is filling up your back and ribs. This is a good sign. Adding on. Take another deep diaphragmatic breath and release the breath slowly on a sh, sound. If you're introducing this to children, you can have them pretend to shush one another and even compete to see who takes the longest to let out all of their breath. Adding on once more, Take a deep diaphragmatic breath in and let it out on a sound. This helps to slowly engaged the voice with your deep breathing. With children, I like to call this B's buzzing and have them all fly around, buzzing at one another. Now that your breath is ready to help your project, it's time to move on to the next video on annunciation. 3. Annunciation: Let's start an unseating. Okay folks, I'm just gonna say it right now or are about to get goofy. These warm-ups may seem rather silly at face value, but isn't that just the nature of our industry? Trust me, these are tried and true warm-ups to help you enunciate and articulate best with your instrument. That aside, here's the list of annunciation warm-ups I'll teach you in this video. Face massaging, LET buzzing, tongue rolling and tongue warm-ups. First step, let's talk about face massaging. As a side note, if you have TMJ or any sort of chronic jaw pain or locking, do not do this without consulting your physician. With children. I always additionally warn them to be gentle and not to do anything that feels uncomfortable. To begin, you'll want to take your fingers and gently massage your jaw and cheeks. We hold a lot of tension in these places from talking all day and often we don't even realize it. Next, you will take your fingers behind your ears and lightly massaged the hinge of your job. You can find this by opening and closing your mouth. Next, I warned you about the goofed Venus. We will be massaging. Are tones. Do not put your fingers in your mouth. Instead, take your thumbs, put them under your chin and find that soft spot where you can feel your tongue and gently press back and forth, lightly. Continuing on, lightly tap your face on your cheeks, nose, forehead, and Chine. These are some of your resonance centers and we have to wake them up. We'll talk more about what these are in the next video. Pausing here for a moment, I would encourage anyone teaching these practices to children to continue to have fun with how you explain these warm-ups, especially with young ones, the goofy or the better. Alright, Finally we are onto tongue stretching. I know, I know. Again, trust me, this is simply sticking your tongue out, up, down and all around. If folks can roll their tongues, that can help too. And of course, last but not least, those lips. I sometimes even pause working on my audio book narrations to real live in my instrument with this one. For kids, a good go-to for this one is pretending you're driving a motorcycle. Thanks for hanging in there with me folks. Let's head to the next video to warm up our resonance centers. 4. Resonance: The third and final ingredient to a vocal warm up is the warm-up of your vocal resonant centers. I struggled to find a cohesive definition for vocal resonance centers that serves our purposes here. So here's my working definition. Although the voice is produced by the vocal chords, the sound is amplified by bouncing around and cavities of the body called resonance centers. If you're still lost, no worries. This video will walk you through how to warm these up and it should be clear why that is paramount. The three resonance centers I warm up for performance or chest knows and head resonance. Starting with chest resonance, put your hand on your chest bone just between your clavicle bones. Basically, just speak in such a way so that your chest vibrates, typically by pitching your voice lower down here. When teaching this to kids, I start by having them say their ABC's in the different resonances. I'd like to pause here to offer an important troubleshooting tip. Avoid throat resonance. I call this the valley girl or cardiac Rashi and way of talking. You can find this resonance by touching your throat and trying to get it to vibrate when you speak, you might sound like this. Again, this is an unhealthy way of talking and can cause damage to your voice. Next up for warming up our healthy resonance centers, touch your nose and try to get it to vibrate. You may have to visualize sending your voice forward as opposed to back for a throat resonance. Be sure not to plug your nose. Kids will often do this. Last is head resonance. This one can be hard to feel, but try your best. Touch your hand to the top of your head and try to speak in a way that gets it to vibrate, you will most likely need to pitch your voice higher like this. Think of joy. Child. Again, say those ABCs or whatever you'd like to exercise this part of your voice. When working with children, or really any actors, have fun with this warm-up. Maybe explore what different kinds of voices, suggestion characters. Who speaks with chest voices, who speaks nasally, et cetera. You just have one video left. And that's putting this altogether. 5. Putting It Together: Here you are at the end of your vocal warm-up. In this video, I will offer two of the many exercises you can do at the end of your vocal warm up to bring it all together as a refresher. So far we've worked through warm-ups of our breath, our articulation, and our vocal resonance centers. I want you to think of these areas like this, stacked on top of one another, supporting one another and interconnected. So here's one popular way to bring together all of our work. I call it the roller coaster sound. It helps to use your hands to illustrate the sound. Start with your hands at the top of your head like this, and loop your sound down, like the pitches going down a rollercoaster. It should sound like this. This exercise allows you to work through all of your resonances and encourages good breath support. The second exercise is tongue twisters or vocal energizers. Tongue twisters are all over and you can certainly Google them to find out which one works best for you. Tongue twisters work really well with kids and so does this energizer. The lips, the teeth, the tip of the tongue, the lips, the teeth, the tip of the tongue enunciate, articulate, exaggerate. This one is fun, can be sped up, slowed down, be done with different pitches and resonances, demands good breath support, and of course, is all about articulation and annunciation. I hope that this class has helped you understand what those into a thorough vocal warm-up for non singers. Of course, feel free to customize your own routine for what works best for you. Resources. I've given you a PDF checklist for creating your own vocal warm-up. Again, if you have any further questions, feel free to reach out. Had to Britney and click the contact page. Thanks so much for listening. I hope this class has served you well.