Springboards Consulting

Marie Ramirez Downing

Presence, Presentations, Voice & Speech Coach

Marie specializes in Voice for the actor, public speaker and business professional. She currently teaches "Theatre Performance of Identity" and “Politics, Performance, and Power” at California State University, Chico where she also coaches voice in the Theatre and Business (Management and Entrepreneurship) Departments. At Chico, Marie was invited to be one of two voice/business coaches for students in the Center for Entrepreneurship’s first ever “Elevator Pitch Competition.” In February 2016, Marie will begin teaching Voice and Presence Workshops through the Human Resources office educating faculty and staff how to understand and manage their voice under pressure in various business and classroom situations, presentations, when leading a group and giving speeches. Marie was previously a Visiting Assistant Professor of Voice and Movement at Texas Tech University's School of Theatre and Dance for the 2014/2015 Academic Year. There she mentored and coached PhD, M.F.A., B.F.A., and B.A., students in voice, was the Voice and Dialect Coach on productions, and taught classes in Voice and Movement. Previously, she taught BFA and MFA voice classes at Roosevelt University and DePaul University's The Theatre School.

Marie is a member of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association (VASTA) and has presented panels and presentations on Mexican American Heritage Identity and the Voice in both Chicago and Minneapolis. Her presentation "My Spanglish Home life, Finding My Voice" focused on the expectations put on Mexican American Actress' that are not fluent in Spanish and the challenges of "code switching" to fit in with both cultures. In her performance piece at the VASTA Minneapolis Conference 2013, "Voices of Wisdom, Spanning Generations", she paralleled her voice mentor in storytelling their personal voice journeys highlighting the similarities and differences two different ethnicities, cultures and a 30 year age gap had on their Voice and Profession.

In March of 2015, she presented two workshops at the Southeastern Theatre Conference entitled, "Physical Awareness: The Creature Meet and Greet" and "Sharing you! Give Voice to your Heritage and Culture through Storytelling.” Later that month, Marie's proposal entitled "Improving your Voice and Presence in the Classroom" was accepted and presented at the Western Academy of Management in Kauai, HI to faculty from all over the country. In February, 2015, Marie was invited by the Voice and Speech Trainers Association and the KC American College Theatre Festival to teach a workshop to festival participants respond to the vocal work in invited productions, and present the VASTA Vocal Excellence Award to a student in the final round of competition in Region 8.

Marie has also led Voice and Presence Workshops for Women Information Technology in Corporate Chicago, and has served as a private voice coach to professional actors, pastors, C- Level Executives and faculty at Universities all over the country.

Education and Certifications:

M.F.A. Acting, The Theatre School, DePaul University, Chicago IL

B.A. Theatre Arts, Acting, California State University, Fresno

Designated Linklater Voice Teacher, The Linklater Center for Voice and Language