The Voice – Faculty-style

29 Sep


Members of Faculty have been picking up some expert advice on using and caring for one of the most important tools of their trade – the voice.

Bridget McCann, an actor for more than 30 years with credits including Taggart, River City, Still Game and Outlander, and a presentation skills trainer, offered her help at a voice troubleshooting session.

“Everyone threw themselves into trying out new performance and vocal techniques,” said Ms McCann.

“One of the key areas was the problem of how to keep a voice from sounding ‘boring’. Variety is paramount these days to help juries who are quite simply not used to having to concentrate for very long. This is a generation of people who flick a switch at the TV when their attention lags. Advocates today have to use as many vocal skills as possible to hold attention.”

Another issue was dealing with a strong accent.

“I always suggest keeping your own voice as that way it will sound more natural and lively – as long as every word is clear,” added Ms McCann, co-author of The Civil Advocacy Skills Book, which is on the recommended reading lists in Scottish law schools.

David Parratt, the Faculty’s Director of Training and Education, said: “The feedback from this has been very good. Members have benefited from ‘hands-on’ practical training and been forced to think about how they present with their voices in court. It is hoped Bridget will be able to return to run another session for the membership. I would recommend it highly.”