Quote of the Day, 19th and 21st Centuries

I will keep telling people the same thing until I am red in the face: there is no secret placement, no secret turning of the voice, no secret path of the breath that you need to spin the breath into, no magical soft palate position, no perfect laryngeal depth, no secret diaphragmatic support system that will give you a voice – if your vocal folds aren’t closed.

Jack LiVigni


Loose, pushed out breath is useless even injurious, though you have lungs full, for it causes local effects, irregular vibration and disrupted energies. Compressed breath comes through co-ordination. It has only to be guided, and restrained. Its inherent power feeds all the effects made by the vocal cords. It does not upset the pose of the voice. It permits the throat to act naturally, ‘open’ as in talking. It does away with both breathy and pinched tones. It does not demand one quality of resonance only but commands all colors, from the darkest to the lightest and all pitches, from highest to lowest. Compressed breath permits all effects made in declamation, provided same effects do not become a ‘method.’ In fact, stereotyped singing is impossible, when breath is compressed. There is no ‘attack,’ no ‘mouth position,’ no ‘tongue control,’ no ‘voice placing,’ no ‘fixed chest,’ no relaxing this or that muscle no stiffening of any part of the body, in fact, nothing that would not spring from instinctive utterance. 

W.E. Brown (quoting Lamperti Jr)

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