The Animated Reader: How to ‘Wow’ Your Listeners When Reading Aloud

Voice & Presentation Skills / Storytelling

Do you dread reading books or texts aloud as you are aware that you sound muffled, boring and dry? Worry no more! This 3-hour hands-on workshop will enhance your ability to read any text aloud clearly with greater volume, expressiveness and confidence, such that your listeners will appreciate the words that you are communicating to them orally.

Areas Covered

  • Understand why relaxation and alignment are essential to support your voice
  • Produce and release your voice effectively
  • Improve your articulation
  • Connect intention and speech together
  • Present and interact with your audience

Session 1:

  •  How alignment and relaxation help to produce clear and loud speech
  •  Releasing your voice: a) direct your voice forward, b) utilise resonance
  •  Exercising your articulators (lips, tongue, soft palate) for clearer speech
  •  Building Expressiveness #1: Playing with pitch, pace and volume

Session 2:

  • Building Expressiveness #2: Connecting intention, speech and gesture
  • Relating to your audience (e.g. the importance of your gaze; standing & reading vs. sitting & reading; showing pictures to audience vs. reading text at the same time; audience participation techniques)
  • Putting all the skills together: Coaching each other towards a final presentation during which you will be given personalised feedback

Pre-Workshop Preparation

For Participants

  • This workshop is open to participants who are fluent in English.
  • Please come dressed in loose clothing that will allow freedom of movement.
  • Please bring a storybook or piece of text that you would like to practise on.

For Organisers

  • Please make available a fair-sized room that allows participants to sit preferably in a large circle and to work together in smaller groups. There should be space as well for participants to stand up and do some physical (non-strenuous) movement and for the facilitator to interact with the participants.
  • Please provide pen/pencil & paper for participants to take notes (if necessary).
  • Please provide a large whiteboard and pens. Access to a computer/computer projection is welcomed, but not absolutely necessary.
  • Please make copies of hand-outs that will be emailed to prior to the workshop.

About the Facilitator

A Singaporean writer, editor, storyteller and theatre practitioner, Verena Tay has published a short story collection, Spectre: Stories from Dark to Light (2012), and three play collections, and edited various fiction anthologies, including the bestselling Balik Kampung series of short stories published by Math Paper Press. She possesses three Masters: English Literature (National University of Singapore, 1993); Voice Studies (Central School of Speech and Drama, London, 2005); and Creative Writing (City University of Hong Kong, 2015). Since 2005, she has been helping people to improve their communication skills and has taught voice, speech and presentation skills, storytelling and creative writing.