It is that time of the year when we try to pick the perfect gift for loved ones. Here are a few of my favorite things that just might be a great fit for the Singer or Speaker in your life.
- The Purple Cushion: I cannot say enough about my purple. The fact is we all sit too much and for the voice user that can mean tensions that inhibit breathing potential and for some, causes tension transference to the muscles of diction and articulation. The purple is a great dynamic cushion which encourages better posture and keeps you from putting pressure on your bottom as you sit.
- Humidiflyer: Planes are overly dry, germ canisters that seem designed to keep voices from staying healthy. Still, Singers and Speakers do rely on them to get to auditions, speeches, and gigs. Enter the humidiflyer. This device may get you an odd look or two but you will land without the dehydration, jet lag, and potential viruses you might otherwise experience with your flight.
- A Cashmere Scarf: This gift is a little cliche but I have personally never looked askance at a warm wrap.
- Beltbox: This interesting device allows Singers to warmup and/or practice anywhere by muffling your voice about 30dB. It can also be used with a microphone for quiet conversations or gaming.
- Final Straw: Singers and Speakers alike use straws to warm up and tone their voices on the go. Straws are useful but terrible for the environment. Additionally, doing SOVT or vocal function exercises with a straw only work if you have one. Enter Final Straw which is making having one straw easily accessible a mission. I bought three.
- Audible Membership: Voice professionals often depend on reading widely in order to develop new skills sets and expand our general knowledge base. Quality stories in can become quality stories out. Audiobooks help busy people read more and make a thoughtful gift for the voice user in your life.
- Itunes Giftcard: Voice professional, Singers in particular also end up consuming large quantities of music. A gift card for iTunes or Amazon Prime Music will definitely go to good use.
- Kensington Wireless Presenter: This cool tool makes presenting with slides a breeze. Not the only kid in the playground but it is a great value for the money.
- Massage: Voice professionals are literally putting our body into everything we do as we line up a physiology to support sound with air in a dynamic way. If that sounds exhausting, it can be. A massage is always welcome.
- Invest in them: What the voice professional on your list wants most of all is your support. Buy their book or album, donate to their event, subsidize in part or in full an audition trip or convention registration fee, and/or attend one of their events. Be creative and invest in their work. That is seriously the best gift of all.
I hope this was helpful. If you have any comments or ideas for great voice-user gifts, I’d love to hear from you. Post here or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
GROW Voice, is a Boston-based business. Founder and CEO, Gina Razón has taught voice and speech for over sixteen years to individuals, organizations and in academic settings. She is sought after as a teacher of voice and speech, singing, and public presentation. Gina has a BM and MM in Voice Performance, is a practitioner of Fitzmaurice Voicework and a certified teacher of Somatic Voicework. She has served as voice coach for TEDxCambridge, and speaks at National and local events on all things voice and speech. Gina is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, The Voice Foundation, the Voice and Speech Trainers Association and the National Speakers Association. More information at www.growvoice.com.