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Voice and Speech Review

Voice and Speech Review is a scholarly journal for voice and speech professionals in the performing arts. It features writing about cutting-edge theory and practice in the many aspects of voice and speech work. The VSR is the only scholarly journal that exclusively publishes work about voice and speech training for stage, film, TV and radio.

Jeff Morrison, Marymount Manhattan College, US

Associate Editor-in-Chief: 
Tara McAlister-VielUniversity of Essex, UK

Vocal behaviors of student actors and student speech-language pathologists

Jeff Searl & Erika Bailey

Vocal health is important for a large segment of society, but particularly for teachers, coaches, singers, actors, politicians, ministers, and others who have heavy voice demands. Even temporary voice problems can derail occupational advancement. Severe or more permanent voice issues can lead to inability to work and psychosocial impacts that detract from a person’s quality of life (Duffy and Hazeltt 2004; Thomas et al. 2006). Of all the professional voice user groups, teachers and student teachers have received the majority of attention in the research literature in regards to vocal complaints, voice behaviors, and care of the voice (e.g. Roy et al. 2004; Schneider and Bigenzahn 2005; Verdolini and Ramig 2001).

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Reflections on contemporary commercial singing: an insider’s perspective

Irene Bartlett

To date, few studies have incorporated singers of contemporary commercial music styles (CCM singers) into their participant samples. When CCM singers have had some small representation, the researchers typically have been from outside the CCM areas of voice, and reports have featured either laboratory-based testing of small participant samples or investigation of symptomology from patients seeking treatment in voice clinics. For the most part, this etic (outsider) reporting lacks consideration of the real world performance contexts and environmental conditions of professional contemporary gig singers’ (PCGS) work-life. What follows here are reflections that have evolved from my lifelong career as both PCGS and teacher of CCM singing styles. Additionally, the self-reports of 102 PCGS in Australia present an “insider” view of the real world from the lived experiences of this important, yet under-researched, group of professional voice users.

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Translating Timon: the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Shakespeare Translation/Adaptation Project

Scott Kaiser

There’s theory, and then there’s practice.
In the last Voice and Speech Review, a great deal of ink was spilled between language mavens John McWhorter and David Crystal in debating the question of whether “translating Shakespeare” into modern, understandable English is necessary or worthwhile. 
In proposing that Shakespeare begin to be performed in translations comprehensible to the modern spectator, John McWhorter suggested:

The translations ought to be richly considered, executed by artists of the highest caliber well-steeped in the language of Shakespeare’s era, thus equipped to channel the Bard to the modern listener with the passion, respect and care which is his due. (2011, 41)

In his skeptical rebuttal, David Crystal retorted:

That sounds good. OK, so do it. Which artists does McWhorter have in mind? And, having found some, let’s see some examples of their work. I’d love to see a translation which retains the poetic quality of the original, avoids banality, and approaches the ‘full comprehension’ demanded in his original piece. (2011, 47)

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Speech stereotypes: good vs. evil

Amy Stoller, Eric Armstrong, Kim James Bey, Doug Honorof & Adrianne Moore

At 8:30 on the morning of Tuesday, August 7 2012, five dialect coaches found themselves facing (via Skype, in one case) an audience of voice and speech teachers. We were there to discuss speech stereotypes in performance work.
To be honest, until the conference started, I wasn’t sure that anyone other than the panelists would show up. Maybe it was too early in the day. Maybe people would fear that they’d be in for an hour of heated argument on a divisive subject—hardly the happiest way to start one’s day. Were we nuts? It occurred to me that perhaps I, as the architect of this panel, was certifiable. Surely speech stereotyping was the most contentious thing I could have selected as a presentation topic.1 Here I was, plunging in where angels fear to tread, and I’d dragged four innocent colleagues in with me. What had I done? How had we landed here?

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Kulning – an ornamentation of the surrounding emptiness: about the unique Scandinavian herding calls

Susanne Rosenberg

It is hard to describe in words both how kulning sounds and how you do it. The starting point for the vocal technique is that you want to be heard and to communicate outdoors with the help of the voice. As it has mainly been women who have traditionally worked on the fäbod (summer grazing pasture with small buildings for people, pets, dairy products, and animal feed), the use of the voice has also evolved according to the strengths and limitations of the female voice.

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Speaking with skill: a skills based approach to speech training

Eric Armstrong

In his new book, Speaking with Skill, Dudley Knight steps out of the shadow of critiquing the work of traditional speech trainers, such as William Tilly and Edith Skinner, and presents his life’s work in the field of speech skill acquisition. Though the book is new, Knight’s dynamic and engaging approach is supported by a teaching career of more than 40 years. Knight-Thompson Speechwork (KTS), offered by Knight along with his colleague and long-time collaborator Phil Thompson, has been presented in the USA for more than 12 years. 

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