Best Public Speakers Series: Studying Chadwick Boseman

Updated: Nov 5, 2020

Chadwick Boseman was an American actor. Boseman's breakthrough performance came as baseball player Jackie Robinson in the biographical film.

best public speaker series

Creator: NurPhoto | Credit: NurPhoto via Getty Images

What we reviewed: Tribute to Denzel Washington


  1. Strong voice and great pace: Chadwick starts his speech with a strong, confident, low-pitched voice. Projects throughout the entire room and speaks at a rate that is easy for the audience to follow. (:15)

  2. Gestures: He uses intentional micro and grand gestures to support and emphasize the message being delivered. For example, he puts his hand to the heart when he says “personally” (:15), he extends his arm when he talks about the entire cast (1:38), and he points when mentioning the things he refused to compromise (1:52).

  3. Powerful words and phrases: Chadwick uses unique words and phrases to leave the audience with a message to be remembered. For example, an offering from a sage and a king is more than silver and gold, it is a seed of hope...” (1:14), and "let he who has walked on water, be watered" (1:58).

  4. Engaging eye contact: He looks directly at Denzel during certain statements to show that he is talking directly to him. Strong eye contact makes your listeners feel important. (:15, 1:45)

Strategies for improvement:

  1. Vary vocal tone: Although the delivery is strong and commanding, Chadwick could adjust his vocal style from assertive to consultative to capture enduring moments (2:08).