Sunday, February 24, 2008

Storytelling tip #7

Really, it's more of a life tip, but here goes:


Drink plenty of water before you perform and even during if necessary. If you find yourself clearing your throat, take a sip of water. I build in places in some stories where the characters drink water. Water is better than anything else for your voice. Yes, lemon tea tastes good, and honey feels nice on your throat, nothing wrong with that, but the absolute best is water. That's what a speech pathologist told me many years ago.

I don't subscribe to the theory that you have to drink 8-10 glasses of water every day. It turns out that's one of those myths that we parrot without knowing the underlying reasons it was given in the first place.

For your voice, though, do drink lots of water. It may well mean that you have to rush to the bathroom frequently, but it will help you sustain your voice through multiple performances.

I drink tap water, bottled if I'm offered it or if I'm in a place where the water tastes bad or is suspect. I never drink from a school water fountain (a bubbler, pronounced "bubblah," where I grew up), opting for filling my glass from a sink. Think about it--all those kids putting their mouths directly on the spigot!

All this blather about water has made me thirsty. I'm off to the kitchen for a glass of H2O.

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