Vocal Variety

  • Name Vocal Variety
  • Category Public SpeakingWorkshop

Public Speaking
Vocal Variety – Workshop

Vocal Variety is the main method used to put emotion into your speaking and presentations. Imagine a presentation without vocal variety, dull monotone and boring.
This workshop will explore the three key elements of vocal variety and how they can influence your emotional communication in any situation,

  • Pace (changing the speed at which you speak)
  • Volume (speaking in a quiet or louder voice for specific reason)
  • Musicality (the combination of pitch and tone in your voice)


Like all of our programs, this workshop is highly participative and we encourage you to learn and practice your new skills to stretch the powerful resource your voice provides.

Contact us using the form shown below for further information about our range of communication skills programs.

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    Office Address:

    The Quadrus Centre
    Woodstock Way
    Tyne & Wear
    NE35 9PF

    0191 519 7298

    Vocal Variety

    Have you ever been the victim of a long and boring presentation that seemed to drag on forever? Most people aren’t amazing at public speaking—that much is true—but this is mostly a result of simple mistakes that people make that can be corrected with learning and development. A good example of this principle in action is demonstrated in the idea of vocal variety, which experienced speakers know is an essential part of giving an excellent speech or presentation .Vocal variety is the process of altering three components, pace, volume and musicality (pitch and tone) of your voice in order to put emotion into the presentation and keep your audience’s attention. Zero vocal variety would be using a monotone, unchanging tone of voice throughout the presentation. Dull and boring!
    Everything should be used in moderation however, and vocal variety is no exception to this rule. Too much variety can leave you sounding flighty, unprofessional, bubbly, and whimsical. If you are giving a presentation to a room full of businessmen, it isn’t going to exactly help your case if you pitch your voice up a few octaves every couple of minutes. It is important to know your audience and adjust the variation accordingly, accounting for their age, mood, and numerous other factors that play into your decision.
    The acoustics of the venue should also be taken into account, as applying too much variety in your speech may also make it difficult for the audience to hear you, especially if you are speaking in a venue that does not have a dedicated sound system, and you’re forced to use the power of your voice to make your speech heard to all members in the audience. In these circumstances, you will have to judge whether or not you should assume multiple vocal personalities, or whether you should stick to one voice and simply adding variation in your pacing, volume and tone in order to keep people emotionally connected.

    It’s all about the Audience

    No matter what fine-tuned technique you’re able to integrate into your speech, presentation, or performance, you will never be able to please everyone all of the time. As mentioned in various other articles on this website, it is crucial that you have a deep understanding about your audience. Are you speaking to a business demographic that prefers professional, factual information? Are you speaking to a room of 20 year old young successful entrepreneurs? You may need to dial up the vocal variation in order to keep people entertained and fully engaged if you are dealing with young, loud, and enthusiastic businesspeople rather than a room full of seasoned industry veterans who have heard it all and seen it all by now. One of the major aspects of attaining mastery over public speaking skills is cultivating a sixth sense: your ability to judge the audience and change your plans accordingly. Be able to adapt your content to changing audience conditions, and you will be able to maintain your control over the audience rather than end up getting booed off the stage or overwhelmed by hecklers.
    Find a balance between combativeness and light-heartedness if you’re being heckled. No one in the audience wants to be scolded like a child, even if they’re shouting out immature insults and obscenities to the presenter. Nonetheless, you should certainly put your foot down, or you’re going to end up being walked over by people who may not agree with your points, and will express their disapproval vocally without a second thought. All public speakers have to deal with this issue eventually, and learning to understand your audience is incredibly important in order to prevent these situations entirely, or at the very least take control of them and redirect the audience’s energy towards the correct ends.

    Convey Emotion Without Getting too Emotional

    Very few people want to deal with a cry-baby presenter up on stage. Speakers should avoid getting too emotional about personal stories or information, or you will inevitably come off as duplicitous, self-ingratiating, and disingenuous to your audience. You want your voice to convey emotion effectively, but you also want to maintain an aura of rationale to lend you authority on whatever subject you’re speaking on. If you do happen to get emotional during any public speaking event or presentation, and you’re swept up in your natural emotional reactions, use the moment to steer the audience in the right direction. Take the time to breathe, compose yourself and then calmly return to your topic. Relate your emotional story to them, but don’t allow it to overwhelm or control you for longer than the average attention span of your audience members, or you will lose their interest and may never get it back again.
    Spend a lot of time rehearsing your speech with the help of colleagues, family, or anyone who can give you an honest, objective opinion on how convincing you sound when you burst out in tears, shout and lose your temper, or throw the audience into zealous applause with a rousing speech about the virtues of entrepreneurship. You need to keep the pacing in mind, and ensure that you aren’t speaking so quickly that you sound unreliable or hyperactive, but not so slowly that you sound disinterested or detached from the material, bored by a lack of interest in your own craft. Remember, vocal variety includes the word variety and that’s key in achieving the maximum effect.
    This applies universally to everyone in any situation where they’ll find themselves at the podium. Students and professionals alike will need to take all of these factors into consideration when setting the mood for the event. Emotion is your ally, especially if you can appeal to the audience and their hopes and fears, but it can wound you irrevocably if you allow it to control you, which will greatly detract from the legitimacy of whatever you’re choosing to speak about.

    Controlling the Voice

    When you are improving your vocal capabilities, take into account the volume, the pace of your speech (including natural pauses), along with the musicality (the combination of pitch and tone). If you pay close attention to each of these elements, you will be able to master the art of captivating your audience and holding their attention to you and your presentation. This will become second nature to you as you achieve higher levels of mastery of this craft.
    Score yourself when you practice, and consciously listen to your own voice. It helps to practice in a room with some natural acoustic reverberation, such as a bathroom or garage. Listen to your own pitch and pacing, and find out if you take too long of pauses between words, or if you don’t utilize enough pauses. If you really pay attention to how you speak, you’ll find many unattractive habits that you didn’t realize before. Keep score, and mark yourself based on how well you do each time. Don’t be afraid to do your speech over hundreds of times if you have the time, dedication, and determination to perfect your natural speaking voice.
    You don’t want to come off as sounding pretentious, affected, or forced. You want to make your voice sound as natural as possible, improving on your day-to-day speaking voice in order to build stronger vocal variation, pitch control, tonality, pacing, and so on and so forth. It’s possible to attain this by yourself, but it helps to have an objective third party that can critique your work openly, so you benefit from an outsider’s perspective.
    It’s hard to be hard on yourself, but if you ever want to improve, you’re going to need to pick apart your poor vocal habits in order to find the flaws in your speech. When you give a presentation like so many unwitting elderly business magnates have in the past, you do not want your verbal stalls, “ums”, or “uhhs” to be immortalized forever on the internet and remixed a thousand times over on YouTube. A lack of good vocal control potentially killed American Presidential candidate Howard Dean’s career, and to this day, he is still mocked for his unusual growling yell. Do not become an object of parody. Criticize yourself first so that others do not find your faults before you do.

    Exaggeration and Accentuation

    There is a time and a place for using exaggerated speech, such as drawing out certain words in order to add cinematic effect, or to emphasize your motto or buzzwords so that they are more easily remembered by your audience. The latter is a ruthless but effective psychological trick, as our species tends to look for buzzwords and obvious highlighted content, which is the same science driving our addiction to certain brands and products. Advertisers can tell you a lot about it.
    Exaggerating certain words is a form of vocal variation, and it allows you to add a bit of vocal spice into the mix, or to intensify a certain concept or phrase. Whatever you choose to use it for, use it scarcely and wisely, or your audience will begin to think that you’ve got a bit of a mental problem when every other word is drawn out, shouted, or accentuated. Use it strategically, and you will find success. Less is more when it comes to powerful techniques such as this.
    Using vocal variety can help soften the blow of information that would normally be hard to swallow, and it can also make even the most shocking statements sound like parody or sarcasm, when they would normally offend. It’s important to utilize vocal variety to cushion aspects of your presentation that may be politically incorrect with a bit of humour and light-heartedness. Saying something that might offend people in a silly voice or with a half-serious, half-joking tone is much less likely to offend people.
    You will find that increasing the volume of your voice can help in many different situations, such as when you are impersonating another individual, doing a character voice or an impression to entertain the audience. Combine this with effectively-placed long pauses taking the place of natural transitions, and you will keep your audience entertained throughout the duration of your presentation. Combine body language with vocal variation. Don’t be afraid to raise your hands, point, mime, or shake a fist if the situation calls for it, and you want to call particular attention to a concept or grouping of words in the process.

    Learning Vocal Variety from a Master

    We have helped thousands of the world’s most talented up-and-coming public speakers and well-established businessmen and leaders improve their public speaking skills. We have taught them, one-on-one and in workshops, how to best utilize the power of vocal variety to captive and entertain audiences in practically any niche or industry. The real question is, are you ready to join thousands of our students and learn effective speaking from a professional who has seen such a wide range of talents in the industry? If you want to truly succeed and make each event that you speak at an occasion to be remembered, you may need to make some serious adjustments to yourself and to your lifestyle.
    Our promise is that if you stick with the learning and development, you will attain mastery. An extremely low percentage of our students have failed to adapt any of the knowledge from our programs and coaching, and a high percentage have received promotions or positions of increased importance as a direct result of the confidence-boosting exercises, speech training, sales training, business networking training, and any host of our other packages to help you improve yourself with knowledge gathered from the best and brightest orators of the present and past.
    It is our sincerest hope that you choose to take each and every one of the recommendations to heart, and work with us to be your exclusive, master vocal coach to help you attain a greater sense of vocal variety to entertain and enthral your audience with a charismatic and likable personality. Cultivate unstoppable charisma, and create a personality that will keep your audience enraptured. With a little bit of vocal spice, you can make even the most sombre and downcast financial presentations into occasions to be enjoyed, as unbelievable as it sounds.
    We can teach you how to best adapt these lessons and use them to dominate your industry with world-class training from highly experienced public speakers. We are lucky to live in an age where the information and resources is now available at sensible prices, and we look forward to coaching you and growing alongside you as we collectively continue to become better, more charismatic, more courageous, and more eloquent human beings in the process.
    This workshop is not for people who are not willing to reflect on their own technique of lack of finesse. This workshop is for people who are looking to dramatically improve their speaking ability and develop the immense power and range of the human voice.