Why The King's Speech inspired the world…

By Emma Serlin
February 15, 2011

Something powerful

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So The King’s Speech has scooped up all the BAFTAs and it gets me to thinking about how this film made on a small budget with a young director, about a man who finds his voice, has captured the imagination of the world. Why is that?

The writer David Seidler said in his BAFTA acceptance speech, how this film has given those who stammer a voice in the world. That point struck me, as this is what I do and feel very passionate about. Helping people access their voice which, for some reason doesn’t come out as they would like it to. This could be because of an accent or mispronunciation, or because of bad habits or fears or insecurities which over the years have a distorting effect on the voice.

I have had a few amazing sessions with people over the last fortnight, which has left me even more inspired by this work I am doing. Recently, I have been using some very simple techniques which have helped my clients make powerful shifts, in one hour. And when they leave saying, "wow, it’s so simple!", having had several eureka moments, I have felt  incredibly privileged. Not through giving people a voice, but through enabling and empowering people to find their own voice, access it, and let it out with strength and conviction.

I was interviewed by a journalist yesterday, and she was really excited by this work in confident speaking, and was surprised that it is so little known and thought about. People do all sorts of things for self improvement, she commented, we change our hair or get a facial, and yet very few of us think to work on our voice, even though it is one of our main ways of showing the world who we are.

I suppose the success of The Kings Speech has brought this idea to the forefront of lots of people’s awareness. But maybe part of the reason for its popularity is because we would all sometimes like a little bit of help in finding our voice, and that’s what the film portrayed so beautifully. When Prince Albert had access to his voice, he became fully himself, in a way he wasn’t  before. In short, he became a King. What Voice Coach Lionel did so well, was helping Albert to make his outer self, do justice to his inner self. Which leads me to one of my favourite moments of this week. One of my clients asked me if I had seen the King’s Speech, and then told me that after he had seen it, he turned to his wife, and said “Emma’s my Lionel”.

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