We had a great inaugural Group Singing Class at Raise The Barre dance studio yesterday. The focus for the day was on some of the psychological aspects involved in being a singer (how you feel is how you sound/what you convey), learning proper posture, breathing and then finally a bit of work on how to place the voice through the passagio (passageway from one vocal register to another). The group was a mix of happy, friendly adults and kids and it is my belief that much fun was had.
I personally noticed a great deal of improvement in each of the singers over the course of the class. I shared that, over time and with lessons, one can expect to expand their range around a third (4 half steps) each direction … for some that can be an even bigger improvement, depending on different variables … and this was made evident yesterday in just one class!
Even better was that it seemed (to me) that the students in the class could tell the difference in their singing by the end of the class … and that is always the most important thing – for THEM to see the improvement!
There was a goal to achieve, for those who couldn’t make it yesterday but would like to come next week or in the future:
Each person is to come up with a declaration stating their name and what they LOVE MOST about singing. Think of the thing that absolutely makes you ridiculously happy about singing … and create a statement around that. Then, just notice throughout the week or whenever you sing … notice, without judgment … if your mind is ever in a different place than what you absolutely LOVE about singing. Does it go to fear, or insecurity, or discouragement? Any time your mind goes to a place that is different than your declaration … stop and take notice (without judgment about it) and then just repeat your sentence to yourself of what you LOVE about singing.
We create neuropathways in our brain … if how you feel affects how you sound … then you don’t want to create neuropathways that subconsciouusly take you to negative places in your thinking about singing. Think about what you LOVE instead … you’ll have more fun and you will actually SOUND better for it as well!
That’s it for this week … hope to see you next week!
Christopher Anderson-West is a conservatory trained operatic tenor and voice teacher currently living in Southern Orange County, California. Christopher is pleased to be working with Raise The Barre dance studio as a Vocal Instructor and teacher of a weekly class on Musicianship For Singers.
Christopher studied both voice and composition for five years at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He has had the honor of performing in England, France, Italy, China, and around the United States.
As a voice teacher, Christopher’s method is primarily based on the operatic bel canto technique; meaning “beautiful singing”. This technique is currently employed in not only opera, but virtually every form of singing from Pop, to R&B, to Broadway and more … the principles can be carried over as a basis for just about any style of singing.
Christopher’s goal is to impart a healthy vocal technique that will allow you or your child to progress confidently into whatever field of music you or they enjoy.