“Me Thinks the Lady Doth Screech Too Much”

Among Meryl Streep’s many successful roles was her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher, the former Prime Minister of the UK, in the film The Iron lady. A key portion of the film depicted the early stage of Ms. Thatcher’s career. Her critics called her high-pitched voice career limiting. This is still a challenge faced by many women today, in their efforts to succeed in their own careers. But fortunately it is a limitation that can be easily fixed with help from a vocal coach.

Women, by nature have short vocal cords which produce high pitched sounds. In The Iron Lady, Ms. Streep sets about to develop a more resonant voice by enlisting the aid of a vocal coach. As Margaret Thatcher transformed the high-pitched sound of her voice, she was able to find her own authoritative and resonant voice that helped her to be taken seriously, securing her two additional years as Prime Minister.

If you want to learn a method to improve your voice, you can find it in Jerry Weissman’s book Winning Strategies for Power Presentations in chapter 67 on “How to Develop a Richer Voice.” But, as Ms. Streep, in the role of Ms. Thatcher, replies to a member of Parliament who says that she screeches, “Perhaps he could attend more to what I’m saying rather than how I’m saying it, he may receive a valuable education.” See the clip.

How you sound is just as important as what you’re saying.