The death of Margaret Thatcher has brought up a lot of mixed emotions, for me and a lot of other people.
As a girl, at a blue stocking girls’ school, I was immensely proud and can still remember the day, vividly, when she was voted into power. The first woman prime minister and only a hundred years after women were deemed worthy of educating in the same way as boys!
She was an amazing speaker and made even more so by my voice teacher, with whom I studied many years ago, who taught her how to change her voice to sound enigmatic in any space, whether in the House or on microphone in a tv studio.
For many years I earned my living from my voice, whether it was for the Ritz or Fisher Price and know how important it is, to be in control of how one sounds.
Although I sympathized with the miners and hated the Poll Tax, I admired her hugely for her brave politics: I grew up in the blackouts and having to have candles and matches everywhere at home; had a father who paid 99pence in tax for every pound he earned, lamenting his hard efforts taking him into that tax threshold; lived through the Labour government begging for money from the IMF so we didn’t go bankrupt and had our Sterling heavily devalued into decimal currency.
Maggie and her ambition, brought our country up by the scruff of our neck and got us standing tall again on the world stage.
Her incredible energy and drive to better herself and her opportunities and so circumstances was remarkable and the work she put in on her voice was a very important part of that.
She knew, how she sounded, either complemented or hindered what she was saying and this humility at realizing she needed help and vocal skills resulted in her winning two more General Elections.
She was actually never voted out by the people! And even when she resigned she had just won the majority of her party’s support. Learning how to control her voice and deliver public speaking with confidence and clarity enabled her to rule this country and illicit admiration from around the world.
Whatever your politics – public speaking and excellent elocution – are skills worth having!