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Choral  Directors  are  from  Mars                and  Voice  Teachers  are  from  Venus:                       “Sing  fro...
The  Successful  Voice  Teaching  Team              •    Voice  Teacher              •    Choral  Director              • ...
Developing  a  Successful  TeamHow  can  middle  and         •  Local  NATS  Chapter high  school  and             •  Voic...
What  specific  knowledge  is  important  when  teaching  beginning  singers?                     What  about  a  voice    ...
Survey  of        Voice  Pedagogy  Requirements*Voice  Pedagogy                                             Vocal         ...
The  Voice  Teacher  –  Choral  Conductor        Conflict  in  Higher  Education            •  Fantasy  or  fact?          ...
MistructionsWhat  are  some  common  “mistructions”  we  hear  in  both  the  choral  rehearsal  and  voice  studio?      ...
Support  Issues              •  “The  trouble  with  young  professional  singers                   today  is  that  their...
“More  support  is  better”      MORE  support?               BETTER  support!                               9
Support  IssuesHow  about:“Breathe  low”    “Breathe  easily”                             10
Body  Alignment    Issues     “Stand  up  straight.”     “Stand  like  a  soldier.”              “Come  to  your  balance ...
Body  Alignment    Issues     “Suck  in  your  gut.”           “Can  you  sense  your  breath  when  it  is               ...
Textual  Issues “Enunciate!    I  want  to  hear  all        those  consonants!”                        EVERY  consonant? ...
Clear  Choral  Diction     Clear  choral  diction  involves  a      corporate  understanding  of  the         symbols  and...
International  Phonetic  Alphabet                 (IPA)         •  THE  internationally  recognized  standard.         •  ...
Diction  IssuesHow  about:“Make  sure  your  final    consonants  are  clearly    articulated  and  rhythmically    energiz...
“Everyone  sing  a  pure  [i]  vowel.”              One  size  does  NOT  fit  all.                                        ...
Formant/Resonance  Issues      “I  want  absolutely  no  vibrato           throughout  this  entire  piece.”      “Raise  ...
Formant/Resonance  Issues      How  about:            “Tune  your  vowels  to  optimize          clarity  and  resonance.”...
Stamina  of  the  Voice    “We  are  going  to  spend  the      entire  lesson/rehearsal  today      singing  everything  ...
Stamina  of  the  Voice    “We  will  have  a  rehearsal  Friday      evening  from  7-­‐9,  Saturday  from      10-­‐12  ...
What  is  optimal  for  the  voice?          •  Opinions  vary          •  All  voices  are  unique          •  Overuse  i...
Stamina  of  the  Voice    “You’re  a  trained  singer.    Can’t      you  sing  for  1.5  hours  and  then      sing  a  ...
Warm  Ups/Cool  Downs    “Warm  ups  take  too  much        rehearsal  time.  The  choir        should  come  ready  to  s...
Warm  Ups/Cool  Downs    •  As  necessary  to  singers  as  to         athletes    •  Best  done  a  cappella    •  Warm  ...
Warm  Ups•  5-­‐7  minutes•  Cover  4  basic  steps  toward     singing—Relaxation/Posture/   Breathing/Resonance  •  Clea...
Cool  Down•  Brief•  Descending  glides•  Return  choir  to  speaking     range•  Sustained  tone  or  chord              ...
Questions?This  presentation  and  a  handout    version  can  be  downloaded  at    http://acda.nats.org         allen@na...
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Vocal Mistructions - Presented by NATS at ACDA - PowerPoint PDF

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NATS Executive Director, Allen Henderson, steered a panel discussion on March 10, 2011 entitled, "Choral Directors are from Mars and Voice Teachers are from Venus: Sing from the Diaphragm and other Vocal Mistructions," along with esteemed NATS members Sharon Hansen and Brenda Smith, NATS President Donald Simonson, and NATS Past President Scott McCoy. They presented an additional Interest Session that afternoon: "Choral Directors are from Mars and Voice Teachers are from Venus: Top 10 List - Complaints from Both Sides of the Aisle."

Download the PowerPoint PDF of the first presentation from this page.

We welcome your comments on this presentation here! Does your experience support the information presented? Do you have an opposing viewpoint to discuss?

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Transcript of "Vocal Mistructions - Presented by NATS at ACDA - PowerPoint PDF"

  1. 1. Choral  Directors  are  from  Mars   and  Voice  Teachers  are  from  Venus:       “Sing  from  the  Diaphragm”  and  other  Vocal  MistrucAons   •  Sharon  Hansen   •  Allen  Henderson   •  Sco:  McCoy   •  Donald  Simonson   •  Brenda  Smith  
  2. 2. The  Successful  Voice  Teaching  Team •  Voice  Teacher •  Choral  Director •  Vocal  Coach  Who  is   •  Medical  Professionals •  Choreographers/Directorson  your   •  Diet/Nutrition  Experts team? •  Exercise  Physiologist/Trainer •  Movement  Coaches •  Drama  Coach Don’t  have  a   complete  team   together? 2
  3. 3. Developing  a  Successful  TeamHow  can  middle  and   •  Local  NATS  Chapter high  school  and   •  Voice  Foundation  Activitiescollege  choral  conductors  interact   •  Local  voice  teacher  in  your  with  independent   classroomand  academic  voice  teachers  in  their  area   •  Take  a  voice  lesson  yourself to  develop  a   •   Vocal  health  professionalssuccessful  team? •  World  Voice  Day  –  April  16th 3
  4. 4. What  specific  knowledge  is  important  when  teaching  beginning  singers? What  about  a  voice   pedagogy  class   required  for  all   music  education   majors? 4
  5. 5. Survey  of   Voice  Pedagogy  Requirements*Voice  Pedagogy   Vocal   Ch.   0  sem 1  sem 2  semRequirement   Tech Ped#  of  Universities 37 20 1 2 1%  of  Total 61% 33% 1.63% 3.27% 1.63% 5 *Conducted  at  Sixty-­‐One  American  Universities
  6. 6. The  Voice  Teacher  –  Choral  Conductor   Conflict  in  Higher  Education •  Fantasy  or  fact? •  Who  cares? •  Why  worry  about  this? 6
  7. 7. MistructionsWhat  are  some  common  “mistructions”  we  hear  in  both  the  choral  rehearsal  and  voice  studio? 7
  8. 8. Support  Issues •  “The  trouble  with  young  professional  singers   today  is  that  their  teachers  are  no  longer  “Sing teaching  them  how  to  use  their   diaphragms.”  (NY  Times  music  critic)  from  the   •  The  diaphragm  is  exclusively  a  muscle  of  Diaphragm” inspiration. •  Diaphragmatic  pulse  produces  a  hiccup— probably  not  the  best  way  to  articulate  rapid   pitches  in  melismatic  passages. 8
  9. 9. “More  support  is  better” MORE  support? BETTER  support! 9
  10. 10. Support  IssuesHow  about:“Breathe  low” “Breathe  easily” 10
  11. 11. Body  Alignment    Issues “Stand  up  straight.” “Stand  like  a  soldier.” “Come  to  your  balance  point.” “Quickly  check  your  alignment.” “Tuck  that  chin  in.” “Are  your  eyes  looking  out  into  the   world?” “Can  you  sense  your  neck  longer  in   the  back  and  shorter  in  the  front?” 11
  12. 12. Body  Alignment    Issues “Suck  in  your  gut.” “Can  you  sense  your  breath  when  it  is   deep  and  full?” “Do  you  sense  an  expansive,  stretching   feeling  all  around  the  middle  of  the   body?” “Lift  your  sternum.” “Do  you  sense  a  gentle  lifting  sensation   under  your  upper  chest?  Not  forced,  but   buoyant  .  .  .” “Are  your  shoulders  released  and  free?” 12
  13. 13. Textual  Issues “Enunciate!    I  want  to  hear  all   those  consonants!” EVERY  consonant? Final  consonants? Initial  consonants? 13
  14. 14. Clear  Choral  Diction Clear  choral  diction  involves  a   corporate  understanding  of  the   symbols  and  their  use  in  a   concise  rhythmic  context. 14
  15. 15. International  Phonetic  Alphabet   (IPA) •  THE  internationally  recognized  standard. •  Valuable  for  high  school  students  to  be   exposed  to  it  prior  to  college  diction   courses. •  Works  in  both  the  choral  AND  studio   settings.    It  even  works  with  my  church   choir. •  Works  with  various  languages  and  students   are  able  to  see  the  correlations  between  the   use  of  a  particular  sound  in  various   languages. 15
  16. 16. Diction  IssuesHow  about:“Make  sure  your  final   consonants  are  clearly   articulated  and  rhythmically   energized.” 16
  17. 17. “Everyone  sing  a  pure  [i]  vowel.” One  size  does  NOT  fit  all. Vowel  modification  requires   SPECIFIC  solutions  for  each   section. 17
  18. 18. Formant/Resonance  Issues “I  want  absolutely  no  vibrato   throughout  this  entire  piece.” “Raise  your  eyebrows  so  you  will   sing  in  tune.” “Drop  your  jaw.” “Keep  your  tongue  down.” 18
  19. 19. Formant/Resonance  Issues How  about: “Tune  your  vowels  to  optimize   clarity  and  resonance.” 19
  20. 20. Stamina  of  the  Voice “We  are  going  to  spend  the   entire  lesson/rehearsal  today   singing  everything  on  [du].”   ([di],  or  [da]/  Pick  one!) Imagine  spending  an  entire   one-­‐hour  workout  at  the  gym   performing  only  squats! 20
  21. 21. Stamina  of  the  Voice “We  will  have  a  rehearsal  Friday   evening  from  7-­‐9,  Saturday  from   10-­‐12  and  then  a  dress  rehearsal  with   orchestra  from  1-­‐3  and  our  concert   will  start  at  4.” •  Not  uncommon  in  all-­‐state,   honor  choir,  workshops,  etc. •  Even  under  ideal  circumstances   too  much  can  be  harmful. 21
  22. 22. What  is  optimal  for  the  voice? •  Opinions  vary •  All  voices  are  unique •  Overuse  is  abuse 22
  23. 23. Stamina  of  the  Voice “You’re  a  trained  singer.    Can’t   you  sing  for  1.5  hours  and  then   sing  a  concert?” Can  a  Major  League  Pitcher  throw   batting  practice  for  two  hours  and   then  pitch  a  full  game? 23
  24. 24. Warm  Ups/Cool  Downs “Warm  ups  take  too  much   rehearsal  time.  The  choir   should  come  ready  to  sing.” “Singing  the  hymns  for  Sunday   is  a  good  way  to  warm  up.     Once  everyone  has  arrived,  we   can  cut  right  to  the  anthems.” 24
  25. 25. Warm  Ups/Cool  Downs •  As  necessary  to  singers  as  to   athletes •  Best  done  a  cappella •  Warm  ups  adjust  posture  of   the  voice •  Cool  downs  assist  in  returning   to  a  speech  posture 25
  26. 26. Warm  Ups•  5-­‐7  minutes•  Cover  4  basic  steps  toward   singing—Relaxation/Posture/ Breathing/Resonance  •  Clear  goals•  Address  technical  problems  in   literature 26
  27. 27. Cool  Down•  Brief•  Descending  glides•  Return  choir  to  speaking   range•  Sustained  tone  or  chord 27
  28. 28. Questions?This  presentation  and  a  handout   version  can  be  downloaded  at   http://acda.nats.org allen@nats.org 28
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