Though Princess Diana lived in the spotlight for years, it wasn't until just before her and Prince Charles divorce that she decided to hire a voice coach, Stewart Pearce.
"She leapt up from her table, grabbed my arm and said ‘you will work with me, won't you?’ There were no airs or graces," he recalled of their first meeting in 1995. "She was just delightful from the start."
The duo got together after her infamous interview with Martin Bashir, and their work made all the difference in Diana's public persona.
"She had been absolutely ready to burst her banks and speak out, but she was unhappy by the way she looked," Pearce explained. "By that I mean that while she was a beautiful woman in her thirties, she did not look like a person of power."
The voice coach noted that their secret work together didn't focus on things like articulation or vocabulary as "she could speak very clearly." Instead, "It was to do with the position of her voice," he shared. "She had this submissive tone, and she wanted to find weight and resonance."
Over the next two years, the pair formed a tight bond, and Pearce was delighted to see her become more self-assured.
"She had found a way of balancing her private and public self so that there was no change between the two," he said. "She could stand on a platform and feel relaxed and confident about whatever it as she needed to say."
Unfortunately, their time together was cut short when Diana died in a 1997 car accident. Prior to her death, the duo had discussed the idea of Pearce writing a book about their work, but he didn't release his story until last year out of respect for the late Princess of Wales.
To honor Diana's lasting legacy, a statue of the late royal will be unveiled at Kensington Palace on July 1, which would have been her 60th birthday.