Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I love this article from this week's Onion:

Nation Descends into Chaos as Throat Infection Throws Off Obama's Cadence

WASHINGTON—Looting, fires, and mass rioting swept across the nation today when a mild throat infection threw off President Barack Obama's normally reassuring and confident speech cadence, sources in every major city reported.

"My fellow [cough] Americans, please [cough] remain calm," Obama said during a nationally televised emergency address to the nation that caused the Dow Jones to plunge 50 points with every cough, sniffle, or wheeze. "Now is not the time for [cough]…everything's [cough]. Stop it."

Without the president's fluid, almost poetic tone to reassure them, the American people have abandoned all semblance of law and order and descended into a nationwide panic, burning buildings to the ground, disobeying police, and relinquishing all hope for the future...

As Julianne Moore once said,

“You know, comedy's hard. With drama, you have a responsibility to the emotional truth, but with comedy, you have emotional truth and you have technique on top of it.”


How true.

From the Green Room: Comedic exaggeration aside, your listeners respond just as much (or more!) to the sound of your voice as they do to what you have to say.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

So true. Sometimes I wonder if I sang all of my directions and ideas at meetings, I would garner more attention. Tone definitely matters. But how does one avoid being too passionate or zealous?

Matthew Avitabile said...

This is almost as bad as the time the teleprompter died

Sarah Gershman said...

How does one avoid sounding too passionate or overzealous?

I don't think you can sound too passionate, as long as you are authentic. You avoid sounding overzealous by not being overzealous. Thanks for reading!

Mr. Verb said...

Weird, I think I probably would sound more overzealous reading the Three Little Pigs than in a situation when it's all on the line.

But Obama's cadence is still there, and I definitely respond to that when he speaks.

Sarah Gershman said...

That's exactly why I recommend reading children's stories as a vocal exercise. If you can practice the capturing the voice of Big Bad Wolf or the victory of Pig #3 - you will have more vocal tools at your disposal when it really matters.

Thanks for reading.