Voice Training In Speech And Song - online tutorial

The Structure And Use Of The Vocal Organs, And The Means Of Securing Distinct Articulation.

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probably fail to make use of the right pitches, unless he has had definite tuition from a good teacher; he will probably make the fatal mistake of pitching his fundamental note too high, and as he proceeds will gradually work up the scale until he reaches the extreme range of his voice. His great effort engendered by his earnestness will cause him to fail in convincing his audience, and although it is quite evident that he has his subject very much at heart, he appears to suffer from a want of firmness and real sentiment. It is perhaps quite as common to hear a speaker suffering from the other extreme. A too low-pitched voice has a decidedly depressing effect upon an audience, and is monotonous.
101.  Intensity.—A clear distinction must be drawn be­tween intensity of feeling and intensity of the voice. In music the sign/ (forte) is used to signify loudness, and the sign p (piano) to signify softness; ff means very loud, pp means very soft. The untutored speaker relies far too much upon ff for his effect; this is well exemplified by the London park orator, whose chief method of forcing his statements into the minds of his unfortunate audience is a loud declamation, accompanied with a jerky curtsey of the body or by spasmodic windmill actions of the arms. But what magical effects can be produced by a skilful p in speaking! In churches people sleep peacefully through the reiterated ff of the parson, a sudden pp awakens all the slumberers ; ff is likely to ruin, pp to preserve voices. Under the synonym of " light and shade " many readers introduce a crescendo and diminuendo into each phrase ; this is mean­ingless, highly objectionable, and very monotonous.
102.   The Pace of Utterance.—One of the commonest faults in reading and speaking is a headlong rushing of the sounds into one another, resulting in a mere gabble,