By Zara McDowell, RTDNA News
With techniques to warm up and best utilize the voice while recording or reporting live on the air, NBC Philadelphia’s Tracy Davidson, WFUV News Director George Bodarky and Amy Tardif of WGCU Public Media taught EIJ17 attendees how to, ‘Unleash and Focus your Inner Broadcaster.’
The session focused on finding your voice for radio, television and podcasts. The speakers provided techniques on how to deliver copy live on-air.
Tardif said, “You’re talking to one person, keep that in mind.”
“We need to work really hard to sound natural,” Bodarky said, adding that it's a good thing when people tell you, “You sound the same in person as you do on-air. If something is distracting the message, that’s where the issue lies.”
Davidson said viewers can tell how much you know about the story by your voice, and suggested that when producers tell the anchors about breaking news to give them more than just, “There’s breaking news,” but also give them some context so they know how to read it, with the right inflection and tone.
The speakers gave a list of vocal warm-up exercises, which included “Massage your face, including the temples, nose, sinus areas, jaw bones, neck and trachea. Do jumping jacks, jump up and down, shake your arms – do something to loosen your body up….”
Bodarky explained there are four basic dynamics of our voice we want to pay attention to: pitch, volume, tempo and rhythm. Pitch is the highs and lows of our voices. Volume is a technique used to draw attention to certain words. Tempo is the rate at which we speak, and rhythm is the flow of words and pauses throughout the story.
“We want to use rhythm to our advantage to communicate our story,” Bodarky said. “The ear likes to hear variety.”