In this edition we announce our newest Singing Teacher’s Retreat
Gillyanne has a new singing voice research post
We share more articles on singing, acting and learning
And we end with thoughts on budget operas
Teaching singers – the Retreat
The Singing Teacher’s Retreat
It’s one thing to know your anatomy and physiology, it’s another to know how to apply it
It’s one thing to know that your student has problems, it’s another to know which one to fix first and why
It’s one thing to be a good singer, it’s another to find and develop the singer in your own pupils and students
We’ve put together a brand new Retreat for September. The Singing Teacher’s Retreat is for YOU, the teacher, to get input on
improving your vocal diagnostic skills
adding to your knowledge about the voice and learn how to apply it
finding new ways of communicating concepts about voice and music to your students
getting specific advice on how to fix problems your students experience in your teaching studio.
We show you how to take a holistic view of your student and their needs – and how to know which ‘issues’ to prioritise in specific situations. It’s a real pick-me-up for teachers who have been giving for years!
You may not know that Gillyanne started her career as a professional choral singer, performing for 10 years in many of London’s major churches and in professional choirs.
Gillyanne has accepted a new research post at York University. The topic being studied here is very close to her heart – the vocal health of amateur choral singers.
She is sharing the role of Research Associate with Dr Jenevora Williams, under the leadership of Professor David Howard and Dr Christian Herbst. The research being undertaken at York University is part of a much larger project funded by the EU with a budget of 2.4 million Euros.
VOICE – Vision On Innovation for Choral music in Europe
VOICE is a pan-European project for the sustainable development and innovation of choral singing, a first-time major cooperation between choral operators, music educators and researchers.
Gillyanne, Jenevora and David represent the UK part of this multi-nation project.
The research will promote life‐long learning and life‐long use of the voice, improve the health status of voice users, implement preventive health measures, improve the quality of vocal music and thus advance innovation in the world of choral music
The UK project is starting with a short Survey for singers who work in a group (choir, chorus, quartet, ensemble etc)
The new blog on the Vocal Process website is proving very popular, so we’ve been uploading more articles, rants and thoughts for you to enjoy. You can click on the Blog button on the www.vocalprocess.co.uk navigation bar to find out more
We don’t just cover vocal technique – here’s an exercise on what to do during the song intro
The Dead Fish Look when you are singing is so attractive
Lose the dead fish look, or how to sing the song intro
Most singers identify with melody, shape or lyrics, and many come alive when they are communicating through them. But the song intro and postlude are part of the song experience for the audience. Of course, the singer doesn’t sing during them.
It’s one of my pet hates in auditions: the pianist has started the song but the singer just isn’t present, and by the beginning of the postlude has already gone for a coffee. It demonstrates two things – no respect for the pianist, and no understanding of the song’s purpose, its atmosphere and when it begins and ends.
So here’s an exercise to help singers deal with the silent parts of a song intro:
How do you balance vocal technique and performance focus?
Singer’s intellect versus their ‘performer’
Gillyanne and I were talking today about how singers learn. We’ve seen the difference between a singer or actor following a technical instruction, and actually knowing how to apply it to improve singing.
This struck a chord with me because one of my favourite instructions having taught a technique is “that’s good, now make it work“. Meaning, even if you can do the technique or make the sound, you need to make it your own.
It seems that there are at least two aspects to a singer – the singer’s ‘intellect’ and the singer’s ‘performer’, or the separation of vocal technique and performance skills.