With the support of good posture and breathing, vocal clarity and flexibility can be achieved through the effective use of:

  • articulation: the precision used in the formation of sounds and speech to ensure a live audience can understand what is being said.
  • audibility: projection appropriate to the space so spoken sounds carry to the intended audience.
  • clarity: the accurate formation of sounds with the voice to communicate the words and sounds in performance.
  • emphasis: the use of particular stresses in the spoken delivery of a sentence to highlight important words or phrases to improve comprehension for a live audience.
  • fluency: the successful combining of the qualities of vocal performance to produce integrated effects for the audience.
  • inflection: the variation of the pitch and tone within a sentence to clarify emotional quality and intended meaning within a sentence for a live audience.
  • modulation: the careful variation in pitch to communicate meaning and emotion.
  • pace: the speed with which a sentence or passage is delivered to balance the needs of a live audience (variety and maintaining energy) with intended meaning (importance, subtext, emotional state etc.)
  • pause: a planned break in the delivery of a phrase, sentence or passage. These breaks can denote many important meanings to a live audience and are therefore used with control and careful selection. Pause lengths also are important to making meaning for a live audience. Pauses also can indicate change in ‘objectives’ for a role or character.
  • pitch: refers to the intensity of the vibrations in the voice making it seem higher or lower. Variation in pitch creates inflection (see Inflection in this section).
  • projection (loudness): the strength or power used when speaking to carry speech to a live audience.
  • resonance: the use of muscle control and focused projection to intensify the use of the body’s resonators that supports and enhances projection as well as the tonal qualities of a vocal performance.
  • rhythm and variety: variation in vocal performance including the use of pace, inflection and beats (the use of patterns of soft and hard syllables) sometimes called ‘iambs’. Rhythm also refers to shifts in an overall vocal performance and the structure of that vocal performance.
  • tone: the emotional qualities added to a vocal performance by adjusting the types of sounds produced by the voice. These in particular can help convey a sense of a character’s subtext.
  • vocal dynamics: appropriate variation of vocal techniques to denote intensity of emotion, meaning and mood.