As this seems like a time of year for thinking about families, and particularly those we can no longer meet up with, I have decided to put my mother's Essays on Voice online.
She hoped to get them published, I suspect, but got turned down. At the time she worked alongside Patsy Rodenburg, and Patsy's books did seem to fit the publishers' needs. Her books got sold not only to actors, but to anyone who could use such skills in everyday life (that means almost all of us!)
Perhaps her style may appear a little old-fashioned now, but it represents many years of experience, and it seems a shame to let them sit in a box here in my den.
For now, I have put up a page with the Synopsis, and have even added a tiny (and very noisy) sound sample of Sheila coaching actors for the nightmare situation of 'the audition' - which for most of the rest of us might translate as 'the interview'. I had bits of tape from her old tape-recorder, but they only contained the sound of students practicing (either newsreading or Shakespeare, etc) but Tom Lee [who now works as a story-teller] kindly sent me a cassette he used to grab her notes in 1983, and although I miss the laugh, and other aspects of her voice, it gives you a glimpse of her at work. Thanks, Tom!
As well, as the essays, I may try to put a little more of this rare bit of sound up later... The page under construction you can find here...
While doing family, I'll just add in a Christmas card from my dad from 1956 (they could both write beautifully...)