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The Anatomy of a Speech Powerful Public Speaking
The Anatomy of a Speech The Essential Elements Structure Words Voice Body Language Stagecraft
Anatomy of a Speech 1. STRUCTURE
1. Structure Build your ideas. Idea 1 Idea 2 Idea 3
Build relationships –between– your ideas. Link ideas in a seamless flow. 1. Structure Idea 1 Idea 2 Idea 3
1. Structure Add a dramatic opening…
1. Structure …and a memorable conclusion.
1. Structure Create a seamless flow, as if you’re on a scenic journey.
Anatomy of a Speech 2. WORDS
2. Words ? (Less relatable) Use words that your audience can relate to…
It started to snow that evening, and our journey became more difficult. 2. Words Use word pictures. Dusk fell; the air was dense and heavy with snow. The terrain became steeper and more difficult, our journey punctuated only by the steady beat of the horses’ hooves and my own ragged breathing. ? ?
Tell riveting stories. 2. Words Weave stories into the structure of your speech. Build a narrative, not just a speech!
2. Words Dusk falls; the air is dense and heavy with snow. The terrain becomes steeper and more difficult, our journey punctuated only by the steady beat of the horses’ hooves and my own ragged breathing. Tell riveting stories in the present tense.
Anatomy of a Speech 3. VOICE
Voice Voice Voice PITCH is the rate of vibration of your vocal folds. TONE is the resonance - the quality of your voice. VOLUME is the decibel level at which you speak. PACE is the number of words a minute.
3. Voice YOUR pitch, tone, volume and pace are unique. Take your voice for a test drive: vary the pitch, tone, volume and pace. What can you REALLY do with your voice?
Vocal Variety Read out a familiar story in a low pitch, medium pitch and high pitch. Did the meaning change? Take any sentence from the story. Read it in a angry, happy, sad, loving, despairing, laughing, authoritative, sly and shy voice. 3. Voice
Read out loud in a monotone Stand up, take a deep breath and read out a couple of paragraphs of text from your favourite novel or magazine. Read it in a monotone, ensuring that you use your diaphragm when you speak. Voice Exercise: Pitch and Tone
Singing Lessons Alternating pitches Take singing lessons – this will give you more breath control, flex your “vocal muscles”, and give you lots of practice using your diaphragm to sing and to speak. Say the words “cheese sandwich”, or any other two-word phrase, alternating between two pitches. “cheese” (low) “sandwich” (high) - and vice versa. Voice Exercise: Pitch and Tone
Hello Imagine you’re standing in front of a mirror. Greet your image in the mirror. “Hello, Sam!” Now walk backwards from the mirror, greeting yourself again every five to ten feet you move further away. Vary your voice – pitch, tone and especially volume, till you truly believe your “mirror image” self can hear you at 50 feet or more. Do this outdoors, in a park, and practise with a friend if possible. Sam! Projecting Your Voice Voice Exercise: Projecting Your Voice
Write your speech. Count the words. Deliver your speech as a practice. Time yourself. Divide the number of words by the total time to get your “practice” pace. Deliver your speech to an audience. Time yourself. Again, divide the number of words by the total time. This is your “actual” pace. Get feedback from your audience. Do you need to change your pace to make your speech clearer and more powerful? Voice Exercise: What’s Your Pace?
Anatomy of a Speech 4. BODY LANGUAGE
4. Body Language Start your speech with hands open and at your sides. This starts the connection between you and the audience.
4. Body Language Use hand gestures judiciously. Keep them clean, strong, and purposeful.
4. Body Language Use facial expressions consciously but naturally, to tie in perfectly with your words.
4. Body Language Move your feet only when required, when movement adds to your message. Watch out for “wandering feet”! A lot of speakers do this without realising it, and the audience can find it distracting.
Anatomy of a Speech 5. STAGECRAFT
5. Stagecraft Future Present Past Show TIME visually Step back (past) step forward (present), step forward again (future). Move naturally! Stage
5. Stagecraft Show DIALOGUE visually Example: Calpurnia begs Caesar not to go to the Senate, and Caesar responds. Calpurnia Caesar Right = The audience’s right. Left = The audience’s left. When you’re speaking Calpurnia’s words, move to the right hand side of the stage. When you’re speaking Caesar’s words, move to the left hand side of the stage. Maintain the same positions throughout the dialogue. Always on the right as Calpurnia, always on the left as Caesar. Stage
5. Stagecraft Show LOCATIONS visually Example: “I was born in Sydney. I moved to New York in my teens. Now I live in Stockholm.” New York Right = The audience’s right. Left = The audience’s left. Sydney = left. New York = centre. Stockholm = right. Maintain the same position for each location throughout your speech. Stockholm Stage Sydney
Anatomy of a Speech Structure Words Voice Body Language Stagecraft
Visualise! Practice. That’s what brings authenticity. Yes, really.
More than anything else, have fun with it !
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