1. Speech Pathologist Kathe Perez has been working with trans clients for years. She recalls one patient’s insightful remark: “It’s that when I talk, it really isn’t a reflection of my soul – it isn’t a reflection of who I am.”
“Many of the people I work with will not go out into public because they have to talk. Or, they will go with people so that the wife or friend will order for them at a restaurant – because they’re afraid to open their mouths because the voice that comes out doesn’t match the person sitting at that table,” Perez explained during a radio interview.
2. Perez has now developed Eva, the first phone app designed to help transgender users change the pitch and tone of their voice to reflect their identity.
3. Eva (Exceptional Voice App) is an entire suite of voice training mobile app products for both trans men and women. The app guides users through various lessons and breathing exercises:
The app is currently available for both iOs and most Android users for $4.99 on iTunes – which is probably a lot cheaper than visiting an actual speech pathologist.
4. The app’s website states it will take at least 6 to 12 months to effectively alter one’s voice. This video clip features an example “before and after” segment, having a user sample her “original” and “altered” voice:
5. While many trans individuals don’t worry about “passing” in public spaces, others find it a necessary hurdle not only for their own happiness – but for their personal safety.
6. As one user of the app put it: “Voice can be a real liability. There are definitely large parts of this country, even this state, where it’s dangerous to be trans. It can be a matter of life or death.”
Find out more about Eva here.