Stalking the calm buzz: how the polyvagal theory links stage presence, mammal evolution, and the root of the vocal nerve.   

Recipient of Dudley Knight Award for Outstanding Vocal Scholarship, Voice and Speech Trainers Association, 2017; first published by Routledge/Taylor & Francis Group in the Voice and Speech Review, Oct. 6, 2017, Vol. 11. doi: 

“When an artist sustains a strong degree of externally-oriented arousal (high sympathetic activity) alongside a strong degree of internal confidence and safety (high parasympathetic activity), [this] heightened-yet-well-regulated condition is communicated directly to onstage partners and to the audience. The special nature of the vagus nerve, as both neuro-regulator and laryngeal controller, may help to explain the power of the voice in transmitting a performer’s autonomic state to listeners. …Advanced skills in autonomic self-regulation thus emerge as a significant component of performance-level voice training.”


Praise for “Stalking the Calm Buzz”

Screaming for Attention: the Vocal Demands of Actors in Violent Interactive Games

invited guest editorial,  Journal of Voice, January 2017; DOI:

“The voice care community of laryngologists, scientific researchers, and specialists in voice rehabilitation and training has shown a long and steady concern for occupational groups at elevated risk for vocal damage. Schoolteachers, vocal arts performers and students, and people active in sports and physical fitness activities, among others, have been identified as at risk due to the duration and intensity of their voice use. A newer occupational category now demands such attention: actors who voice the soundtracks for video games and those who may be hired to create violent vocalizations for hours on end.”




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