Press Play to hear Leeny Del Seamonds on using character voices in your storytelling on the Art of Storytelling with Brother Wolf.
Written by Leeny Del Seamonds
My journey into professional storytelling came through a stage door. Raised in a theatrical family who ‘spoke story’ (and always gestured with their hands), I eventually studied acting, improvisation, voice, dance and mime. Armed with a B.A. in Theatre/Performing Arts (minor in Directing) from Rowan University , I moved to the Big Apple to make my mark. In between off (and sometimes off-off) Broadway gigs, I took additional classes in voice, acting and mime. An actor never stops learning and growing in her craft/calling. One of the most significant things I learned along the way is the value of having a strong and varied voice and how to research and develop characters.
As storytellers, we often portray multiple characters in the stories we tell. But we certainly don’t want all our characters to look and sound the same. It’s important to interpret, research and develop distinguished, well-defined and clear-cut story characters by approaching each story character as an actor would approach researching and developing a character in a play. And having an appropriate voice for each story character is vital. The whole body plays a part in obtaining and maintaining healthy phonation, creating diverse vocal pitches and qualities, and developing vivid, well-defined character voices. We use our bodies, hands and faces to enhance communication and often add mime, movement, gestures and vocal variety to portray believable characterizations. Determining the story character’s personality, motivation, physical characteristics, and how she moves and sounds are all part of “breathing life into story characters.” A digital recorder and mirror are extremely helpful tools for character definition and comparing and contrasting multiple characters.
As a performer, coach and director, one of my favorite things is working with storytellers/educators who desire to learn these skills. “Spark of Life: Breathing Life into Story Characters” and “Spoken Word Alive!” are two of my most sought-after workshops and intensives.
Web Site: www.LeenyDelSeamonds.com
With a face and voice that launched a thousand characters, Leeny Del Seamonds, Master Story Performer™, is an internationally acclaimed performer, coach, and multi award-winning recording artist. Her animated and uplifting tales and tunes reflect her love of people and desire to embrace life to its fullest. From a prized television show to a village in Gengcun , China , to the Comix Club in NYC to the National Storytelling Festival and Cayman Islands International Storytelling Festival, Leeny Del Seamonds encourages listeners to rejoice in human and cultural diversity, inviting them to share in her Cuban-American sense of humor and joy of performing. With passion, fire and wit, Leeny’s dynamic one-woman shows and renowned workshops headline festivals, concerts and events worldwide.