A Reading is a Performance

« A reading is a performance, » said Terry Fallis* in one of his University of Toronto Building An Audience courses.

(Award Gala photo by Danielle Maheu)
Maybe I revive this outfit for one of the readings?
(Award Gala photo by Danielle Maheu)

With three readings coming up over the next few months, I have reviewed my notes on the subject for a few hints that can help prepare the best performance possible:

1. Choose a section that reflects the book / that reflects you as a writer.

2. Make eye contact with the audience.

3. When reading, it’s good to « act » the characters a little.

4. Use your voice as your instrument. Adjust your voice/performance to fit the writing. Change volume – lower the voice for dramatic moments (but not so much as to be inaudible) and raise the voice for excitement.

5. Vary the pace – slow down to add drama; use pauses, let the audience hang before delivering a punchline (coup de grâce), or speed up for intensity.

6. Practice, practice, practice. Before the reading, try out your piece. Practice in front of friends, or in front of a mirror. You can even time yourself, so that you know how long your reading takes.

I’ve been rehearsing my readings, timer at hand, to help me choose the best sections. Want to know which I picked? Feel free to attend any one (or all) of the readings to find out!


*I know, I know, sometimes I should just call my blog a fan page for this award-winning author…

4 réflexions au sujet de « A Reading is a Performance »

  • 11 September 2013 à 22:26

    Practice in front of friends, oui!
    Practice in front of mirror, non!

    Laisse faire ton miroir, et filme-toi! Tu peux bien mieux évaluer ta performance en te regardant à l’écran par la suite, plutôt qu’en simultané au miroir.


    • 5 December 2013 à 13:01

      Merci de ton commentaire, Alexandre. Tes conseils judicieux d’expert en présentation orale sont appréciés!

      C’est vrai qu’on peut bénéficier d’un enregistrement quand on répète une présentation – bien que ce ne soit pas tout le monde qui a les moyens de ce faire.

    • 4 July 2016 à 16:47

      En passant, ça devrait être écrit « oui », pas « out »!

  • Ping :Séance de lecture – conseils | A. M. Matte

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