AREA OF RESEARCH: Voice, text and dialect (accent coaching)
NUMBER OF PEER-REVIEWED ARTICLES PUBLISHED: 1
UNDERGRAD GPA: “I can’t remember that far.”
LOWEST GRADE IN UNIVERSITY: “Does voluntary withdrawal count?”
BIGGEST CELEBRITY CRUSH: Conan O’Brien
SUPERPOWER: Flight. “Who wouldn’t want that, and think of the money I would save going home.”
BATTING AVERAGE: “I’ve never turned down a piece of chocolate, so I’d say 100%.”
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Assistant professor Shannon Vickers knows how to handle stage fright. The voice, text and dialect expert in the U of W’s theatre department coaches students on how to use their voices in the most effective way possible, both on and off the stage.
The teacher of eight years says nerves often associated with performance or public speaking come from simple unpreparedness.
“Having a good warm-up releases a lot of tension, and preparation is the key to avoiding stage fright,” Vickers says. “If you rehearse and you know your material inside and out and you have a proper warm-up you won’t be besieged by stage fright.”
Vickers is currently on sabbatical and won’t be returning to teach at the University for at least another year as she is five months pregnant. During her sabbatical Vickers has worked in the theatre industry, coaching actors in the recent production of Private Lives by the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and will start work on the production of The Woman in Black, also by RMTC, shortly. She helps her clients and students bring written texts to life through nuance of thought and accents.
Speech and language aside, the 37-year-old also claims to make a mean pizza crust and invites those looking for a good recipe to contact her.