Vocals

Finding the truth in your voice will show you the truth in your writing.

Melinda Brack is a writer, and author of the new collection of coming of age short stories Don’t Go Near the Water.

A Jill of all trades, Melinda has spent her life skipping from industry-to-industry and job-to-job. She lost count of the number of jobs she’d had at around sixty.   In 2020 she decided to revisit writing and started writing shorts stories about coming of age in the Australian bush during the 1970s.

Melinda has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Professional Writing from Deakin University.

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Warm up your voice to build your confidence and improve your open mic reading.

Vocal Warm-Up #1: Breathing

Jeanneatte Nelson from the The Royal National Theatre demonstrates how to warm up your voice, focusing on breathing exercises. Breathing exercises are an essential start to any vocal warm-up; they organise the breathing muscles, extend the capacity of the voice and give a sense of the breath very deep inside the body. Jeannette Nelson is the Head of Voice at the National Theatre.

Vocal Warm-Up #2: Resonance

Jeanneatte Nelson from the The Royal National Theatre demonstrates how to warm up your voice, focusing on the resonance of the voice. To achieve the feeling that the actors are speaking using their whole body, humming exercises are used to develop the voice’s resonance. Jeannette Nelson is the Head of Voice at the National Theatre.

Vocal Warm-Up #3: Opening Up the Voice

Jeanneatte Nelson from the The Royal National Theatre demonstrates how to warm up your voice, focusing on how to open the voice up. After working on breathing and resonance, Jeannette gets the actors to do some stretching exercises to open their ribs up, and yawning to open up the throat. Jeannette Nelson is the Head of Voice at the National Theatre.

Vocal Warm-Up #4: Articulation

Jeanneatte Nelson from the The Royal National Theatre demonstrates how to warm up your voice, focusing on how to open the voice up. After working on breathing and resonance, Jeannette gets the actors to do some stretching exercises to open their ribs up, and yawning to open up the throat. Jeannette Nelson is the Head of Voice at the National Theatre.

Voice – Text Work: Consonants in ‘Hamlet’

Jeanneatte Nelson, Head of Voice at the The Royal National Theatre J works through the “To be or not to be” from ‘Hamlet’ speech with actor Ferdinand Kingsley. I can’t recommend doing the exercise of whispering your story as you read through it enough. It pulls out the sound and rhythm of the text. Try it for yourself to see.

Tongue Twisters

Tongue twisters are articulation exercises used by professional speakers such as actors, politicians, and television / radio hosts.

Diction Exercises

Diction exercises improve your enunciation. Voice and the Actor by Cicely Berry

Preparing for a Reading

These are the things I do to prepare my voice for a recording or open mic. You may them useful.


“Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning.”

Maya Angelou


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Melinda Brack

Short Fiction | Personal Essays | Short Memoir

Thanks for the photo by Mike Lewinski on Unsplash

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