Voice 3

Voice III is the third of four 24-class, 12-week semesters dedicated to freeing the natural voice. Voice I and Voice II are prerequisites for this class.

At this point, our students have laid important foundational work on their voice. Breath and thought are in conjunction, and patterns of tension and constriction have been identified and slowly resolved. But even when the vocal instrument is freed from unnecessary tension, if the actor is trapped by habitual speech patterns, the characters he or she plays will always be similarly trapped. This is why so many untrained actors simply do the same thing with every role they take on. Every character is brought down to their pedestrian, and limited behavior patterns. Common speech habits include dropping energy at the end of a line, speaking in monotone, and rushing over words. Sloppy or jumbled speech is one of the surest ways to kill any actor’s career, no matter how talented.

In Voice III, we are now ready to turn our attention to classical, heightened text. The work of Shakespeare provides the perfect vehicle to stretch the expressive instrument to extremes, and disrupt the casual dynamics of everyday speech patterns. Students in Voice III will develop the vocal dexterity to identify and inhabit rhetorical devices in Shakespeare’s verse. In conjunction with important work happening in acting class, our actors will use their craft to begin achieving greater dimension with text. These acquired skills facilitate cold readings of classical texts by enabling bold choices, clarity of thought, and emotional immediacy. The fine-tuned ability to identify shifts in thought and interpret linguistic nuance is applicable to both classical and contemporary texts.

Shakespeare’s verse provides a gymnasium of language and emotion. In order to rise to the occasion of this beautifully rich and heightened text, we will challenge our actors to use their craft to tap into the depths of human experience. The vocal release begun in Voice I and Voice II continues to deepen in Voice III, broadening the actor’s access to his or her raw materials in order to infuse the words with life and immediacy.

Voice 4 is the final semester for Voice and Speech Classes at the studio.

Liz Eckert( Voice 3: )

Liz studied voice with Kristin Linklater for three years at Columbia University's MFA acting program. Struck by the effectiveness of the Linklater voice method's elegant scaffolding as a guide for greater expressive freedom, she dedicated four years to a rigorous and comprehensive Designated Linklater Teacher training program. Liz also draws from her acting and movement work with Andrei Serban, Niky Wolcz, and Anne Bogart. She continues to learn every time she is in the room with her students.

Raife Baker( Voice 3: )

Raife Baker is an actor, director, and coach who teaches voice and dialects at Maggie Flanigan Studio, as well as being adjunct faculty at Tisch’s New Studio on Broadway at NYU. At Tisch he teaches voice and speech to freshman, sophomores and juniors. He is a recipient of the Tanne Award for Artistic Excellence and an NYIT award for Best Play for his 2012 production of Macbeth.


  • This class pushed me and pushed me to try new applications, specifically image work, that took my understanding of Shakespeare to a whole new level. I would take this class again. And again after that. Be warned: You'll get out of it what you put into it.

    Maggie Belle Caplis

  • "I've never taken a voice class like this one before. By the end of the semester we were all able to live through highly emotional pieces, stay grounded and free in our bodies and still speak with the clarity and connection required for such heightened text."

    Cassie Stewart