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Ryan O'Shea

Los Angeles-based

Voice, Speech, and Communication Coach

Certified Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework®

Certified Teacher of Knight-Thompson Speechwork®

Certified Coach of Organic Intelligence® 

Your inner world is the foundation for your outer expression.

This is the principle that will guide our work together for voice, speech, and communication. My approach combines classical training tools and more contemporary techniques that integrate your whole system – sometimes coaching involves very explicit, traditional voice, speech, and communication tools and exercises, and sometimes, it’s more implicit work focused on integrating your nervous system while speaking. At the center of my work is the belief that using your voice to communicate and share what matters to you with the world can feel good. This requires an understanding not just of the mechanics of your voice and speech, but also how your inner world — what you think and feel — affects those mechanics.

My approach isn’t going to just focus on how you sound, but on helping you feel authentic and good about what you’re saying. For many years, I was offering my clients traditional voice and speech tools which focused on working almost exclusively with outer expression — pitch, sound, range, projection, etc. — and that all felt helpful to a point…but eventually, my clients would plateau so that the traditional tools were no longer helping them grow. When I started working with Organic Intelligence®, in particular, and learned about the interactions of the human voice with psychology, our nervous systems and more, that’s where I started to find an opening to help my clients reach new levels in their voice and communication. These shifts happened when I combined the tools typically used in voice and speech training that focus on outer expression with tools that aim at finding more ease, enjoyment, and connection to the inner world.

Having goals for how you want to sound are great and I’m committed to helping you reach those goals...but I’m not just going to do scales with you. If you're interested in bettering how you sound, then I believe that you have to also be interested in bettering how you feel. I've experienced how this more holistic approach has helped my clients — and me — break new ground and reach new levels in their work. If this sounds like a way of working that interests you, then let's chat.

Here are the methods in which I’m Certified:

Fitzmaurice Voicework®:

a voice technique for actors, singers, and anyone with a voice.

Organic Intelligence®:

a modality of working with your whole complex system, based in complexity science, to find natural forms of integration, resiliency, nervous system regulation, and more.

Knight-Thompson Speechwork:

a skills-based approach to learning speech and accents.

It’s taught in drama programs across the world including Yale School of Drama, Harvard University/American Repertory Theatre’s Institute for Advanced Theatre Training, NYU Graduate Acting Program (and some NYU undergraduate studios, UC-Irvine, and hundreds of institutions around the world, as well as freelance teachers around the world like myself. The four pillars of Fitzmaurice Voicework are:

  • Destructuring: a voice and body warm-up mainly using physical exercises called Tremorwork®. Destructuring releases tension and leads to awareness and aliveness in the body. It causes spontaneous and free breathing, and leads to fuller, more resonant speaking (and singing).

  • Restructuring: vocal support techniques and tools for calibrating volume so that you can effortlessly transition from speaking on-camera to a theatre or conference room.

  • Presence: presence work encourages fluidity of attention so that you can be present to what matters. Presence work is helpful if you find yourself “in your head” or that your voice often becomes shaky or high-pitched when you’re in front of others. My presence work is also greatly influenced by another practice called Organic Intelligence® (read more below).

  • Play: this is where we put it all together, so that you can find enjoyment in your performing and communicating.

My job as a voice and communication coach certified in Organic Intelligence® (OI™) is to spot how your system is using energy in ways that create dis-connection, and to help your system learn new forms of resilience so you can find authentic ease and re-connection while speaking or performing. OI™ is a modality that focuses on sustainable growth over time to build new thresholds of energy, creativity and imagination, connection and communication, nuance and complexity, and emotional capacity, voice capacity, and breath capacity.

As a Certified teacher of Knight-Thompson Speechwork, I want to help actors break away from the misconceptions around learning accents or dialects so that you can reconnect to your authentic voice (regardless of the accent you’re speaking!) and really communicate what matters to you or your character. Rather than just mimicking sounds, I'll teach you the skills for developing a "detailed awareness of—and deep engagement with—the precise physical actions which make up speech." 

You can learn more about how these frameworks and techniques come together to help you learn particular skills for your voice, speech and accents, public speaking, and other communication goals by clicking here.

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