Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2013

Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)

Degree In

Speech Pathology and Audiology

First Advisor

Finnegan, Eileen

First Committee Member

Fennell, Ann

Second Committee Member

Karnell, Michael


Actors often receive training to develop effective strategies for using the voice on stage. Arthur Lessac developed a training approach that concentrated on three energies: structural action, tonal action, and consonant action. Together, these energies help to create a more resonant voice, which is characterized by a fuller sound that carries well over noise and distance. In Lessac-Based Resonant Voice Therapy, voice clinicians help clients achieve a resonant voice through structural posturing and awareness of tonal changes. However, LBRVT does not include the third component of Lessac's approach: consonant action. This study examines the effect that increased consonant energy has on the speaking voice--particularly regarding loudness. Audio samples were collected from eight actor participants who read a monologue using three distinct styles: normal articulation, poor articulation (elicited using a bite block), and over-articulation (elicited using a Lessac-based training intervention). Participants learned about the "consonant orchestra," practiced producing each sound in a consonant cluster word list, and practiced linking the consonants in short phrases. Twenty graduate students of speech-language pathology listened to speech samples from the different conditions, and made comparative judgments regarding articulation, loudness, and projection. Group results showed that the over-articulation condition was selected as having the greatest articulation, loudness, and projection in comparison to the other conditions, although vocal intensity (dB SPL) was not statistically different. These findings indicate that articulation treatment may be beneficial for increasing perceived vocal loudness.


actors, articulation, loudness, projection, voice


viii, 53 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 50-53).


Copyright 2013 Brett Raymond Myers