There’s power for me
In my ‘Rule of Three’’
If it comes up three times in a week, I pay attention. If it comes up three times in a day, I honour the sign with action.
The subject of ‘voice’ fascinates me on many levels.
I teach dialect and speech from that love.
But it goes deeper for me.
Tied up in the annals of our relationship with language is so much — heritage, culture, aspirations and possibilities — even fears, inadequacies and oppression.
The human right to speech is the cornerstone of all government.
Voice is a deeply powerful thing, and never has it been more important than now.
The pandemic of 2020 has been the ‘great equalizer’, changing the way everyone must live and work. It has also raised many issues of accessibility, privilege, equity and justice.
We are more informed, and aware, and purposeful about the ways in which we show up in the world and interact with it.
The human consciousness has evolved and that gives me Joy!
With the arrival of coronavirus, suddenly everyone has become a ‘virtual presenter’. Seeing and hearing yourself on the screen can be challenging and awkward for many of us. In my conversations, people would react with wonder when I shared simple techniques like ‘connect by using your core muscles’, ‘work on the exhale’, or ‘keep your voice in a closer frame’.
I had resisted doing online courses, but now I was listening more closely to the many requests for this from my clients. My private practice was full 6 days a week, with more and more contracts as an On-set Dialect Coach for film and TV. My time and energy were maxed-out. To be able to reach more people I knew that it was time to create something they could find online.
That is why, in 2020 – what many consider ‘the retirement’ years – I started something I’d been envisioning for a very long time. With the help of an amazing team, we created a “virtual campus” that would provide courses of all kinds related to Voice and Speech.
The World of Voice.
The idea had been swirling in my head for a while. Some of my rule of 3 thinking saw me move things along. I’d heard from actors, business professionals, ESL students, and public speakers of the challenges of connecting with a more global audience.
For some time I had studied what was available in online dialect and pronunciation courses, and they all looked much the same — usually, someone standing talking to the camera, and teaching people how to say the words. I kept hearing from clients how many of these courses they had tried without any noticeable results.
To say that is NOT my method would be an understatement.
Dialect is actually a whole set of behaviors that are adopted or adapted to each person’s way of working. It has been my work for many years to explore how sound is programmed from birth, to help people discover their own best learning style and to find ways to remap their brain and reprogram speech behaviours. It is very exciting work!
As a professional performer since childhood, and a Voice Actor myself, I also knew how much more easily we learn when there is pleasure in the learning. It was important to me to bring some enjoyment to the process — allowing people to view real clients learning and celebrating — almost like reality TV.
My team and I have breathed our combined love and expertise into this project and lovingly named it ‘The World of Voice’.
Our very first course is the most sought-after dialect, General American.
Please come in!
I hope you’ll have learned a little something about using your powerful voice.
Our flagship – Mastering Your General American Dialect
It was almost serendipitous how everything started coming together for the creation of Mastering Your General American Dialect, the 18-episode flagship course brought to you by The World of Voice.
The first person to join the team was Eyal Heyne Galli, a client who had succeeded in mastering the General American dialect himself. Eyal was not only interested in the process; he was good at getting information out of Joy’s head!
So, we decided that a beautiful format for the course would be Eyal interviewing Joy about the work and the way she teaches, then going to the worktable so that students could see this in practice. It would allow online students to experience the work as it happens with a variety of clients.
Joy chose clients who would exemplify certain cultures, challenges and different ways of learning to participate (live!) in the online course. From different backgrounds, with unique accents or approaches.
She wanted every student to be able to find someone in this group that they could identify with. So that they would feel like they could ‘almost hear’ their own voice.
From the start, the challenge was to make the course interactive, while meeting the needs of a variety of clients from different backgrounds.
How do you make a series of classes that lead people through a process that is personalized to them — in an online format?
“I realized that I was imagining people being able to sit in on my sessions with other clients. That if they could be there in the room watching and listening while I worked with different clients, that they would be able to work through the course alongside them and still follow their own practice. They would need a workbook with exercises that they could practice each day. Along with a formulaic approach that allowed them to measure their own results and give them a sense of confidence in their own progress.
So, as we started doing this, we realized it was almost like watching a YouTube or a Netflix special. It was almost like tuning into a show for new episodes every week. And that’s why we call our sessions episodes, because this is really a show about learning the general American dialect. And as performers, we’re bringing all our skills to get them interested and engaged. It’s a show you want to tune into.”
Inclusivity and equality
World of Voice is passionate about creating a global community of online learners and unlocking the extraordinary you.
Joy recognized that students learning the course will not all sound the same using this dialect. Our team believes that everyone has a unique identity, it’s who you are and not how you speak. It is important to us that Joy’s techniques allow each person to find the dialect in a natural and organic way — and to make the dialect your own. The emphasis must be the speaker’s message, not their way of speaking. The emphasis is on being beautifully understood, not on getting it right!
As each student is empowered to make the kinds of confident connection they desire — no matter where they are in the world, or what role they need to perform — the World of Voice team hopes to contribute towards diversity, equity, and inclusivity.
“Let’s keep everything that’s unique and special about you and transform your voice into your most powerful asset”. Joy