for Custom Content for A.Y.A. ACTRA Members

Thurs. Nov. 26, 2020

1:00 - 2:30 + 1/2 hr. = 2 hours

ACTRA Toronto is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: AYA workshop

Time: Nov 26, 2020  ......1:00 PM Eastern Time 


Join Zoom Meeting



Meeting ID: 939 4395 1406

Passcode: 267086

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Meeting ID: 939 4395 1406

Passcode: 267086

Length of Zoom session....... 2 hours (with a small break perhaps)

Approx. Participant age...........................55 - 88

Number of participants....................4. 20

Date 2020.................................TBD, Nov. or Dec. / afternoon

Payment.................................. At discretion of ACTRA

Format of learning materials:

       Participants will get a .pdf handout by email AFTER the workshop, with resources including links, recap and learning materials they can use every day. 

Interactive with vocal practice several times throughout

Content to include any or all of the following:

PART 1   (30 mins)

  • Understanding Vocal Anatomy

  • Vocal Hygiene & Maintenance

  • Voice Changes Through the Years

  • Essentials of a Consistent Practice Routine (no fuss)

  • How Health Challenges can Affect Your Voice

PART 2   (25 mins)

  • Diction Exercises & resources

  • How speech connects to voice

PART 3   (35 mins)

  • Vocal Exercises & resources

  • Mainting the voice for resilience, ease of tone & brightness

  • Tone support

I would be happy to include a Q&A at the end.


Kathy send brief BIO to John 

Kathy send "blurb" for workshop to advertise in E-Blast

Kathy prepare handout & visuals for Zoom event

John tell Kathy any logistical details needed



John McGrath    aya@actratoronto.com   

Chair, AYA Committee, ACTRA Toronto



Problems caused by a Breathy Voice


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Try to Remember - Bros. Four - origArtist Name
00:00 / 02:54

Nov. 6 - John wrote: Ultimately, your outline was good. We would just want to focus for our membership on use of voice and how that benefited them in their acting (as opposed to singing, although I know usage is related). 


As we age, our voices go through changes. This workshop will teach effective methods to maintain and improve voice use for actors over age 50. Learn how to maintain, improve and strengthen your voice as the years pass so that it will serve you as it applies to your career as an actor. And it will improve overall health! Participants will apply vocal techniques throughout.


Workshop outline may include a variety of the following topics:


Increasing vocal range (highs and lows)

Managing Physical and Mental Tension

Building vocal Endurance and stamina

Breath Support & Correct Breathing Technique & Exercises

Identify with your characters vocally - rediscover the artistic magic of your voice

Articulation and practice patterns for diction

Optimizing vocal Volume

Increasing Vocal Projection and Power

Vocal tones and colours

Enrich the timbre of your voice

Things to Avoid for your voice and what constitutes vocal abuse

Developing a Vocal speaking Style and Sound

Troubleshooting Throat Dryness

Establishing a convenient and progressive “No-Fuss” practice ethic

Increasing Enthusiasm and Expression through Sound

Controlled Dynamics (range of volume control)

Improved Tone & Resonance Colouring (sound quality)

The Science of Acoustics

Connecting Sound to Facial Muscles

Vocal Stamina & Eradicating Fatigue

Natural Posture

Vocal Flexibility

Muscles of the Face

Tongue Twisters and diction drills


Physical skill practice and application

Jaw and tongue tension

- correct breathing and practice techniques

- practical vocal warm-up exercises

- experience creating new sounds

- what to do when you lose your voice or become hoarse


Hello John,


That's great. I look forward to speaking with you next Wed. Oct. 21, 10:00 am.




Katherine Thompson

ACTRA member # 04-08576

Mobile/Text: (416) 282-9939


From: AYA <aya@actratoronto.com>

Sent: Thursday, October 15, 2020 1:37 PM

To: Kathy Thompson <k.thompson6@sympatico.ca>

Subject: Re: Possible Future Workshop for ACTRA's AYA Committee - Hello back John


Thanks Kathy. I will give you a call next Wednesday, Oct 21 around 10am if that works.


Thanks again for the proposal.


John McGrath

Chair, AYA Committee, ACTRA Toronto


From: Kathy Thompson <k.thompson6@sympatico.ca>

Sent: 08 October 2020 15:03


Subject: Possible Future Workshop for ACTRA's AYA Committee


Hello John and the Act Your Age Committee Dept.,


I am attending the virtual ACTRA Toronto Town Hall this afternoon and I learned about the AYA Committee!


I’m a singing teacher and a speech & voice coach to speakers (including actors). Our voice are essential tools for our craft.


As we age, our voices go through changes. A twenty year-old doesn’t share the vocal challenges that arise as years pass. A seasoned live stage performer would of course, have a robust voice into later years. Unless the voice is consistently maintained and exercised, it will tend to lose resiliency and dexterity, range and the tone will undergo changes.


I would be delighted to create and propose an online live voice workshop for the AYA Committee covering everything connecting to (what I call) the “autumn” voice.

Topics might include – understanding vocal anatomy, establishing a consistent and easy daily practice routine to gain vocal range, resonance, stamina, links to my online free vocal maintenance exercises, etc. Vocal hygiene is important to touch on and we also need to raise awareness of how the whole body connects to the voice.

Further items could include developing a unique style of voice, character sounds for vocal variety, and so forth.

My workshops are always interactive, fun, informative and interesting.


I have facilitated my sing for wellness programs at senior residences for over a decade.

I assume that the majority of “senior” ACTRA members are ‘active’ seniors and not too many above 80 or 90 years old.

Perhaps focus on the voice for ages approx. age 55 – 80.


I look forward to your feedback. I would be delighted to be involved in helping our membership through sharing my knowledge.



Katherine Thompson