The cradle of bel canto

Many years ago I worked as a section leader at St. John's United Methodist Church in Kansas City. It was a truly wonderful experience and one of my happy memories from my time there was listening to the children's choir. There was something about those sweet, innocent voices that never failed to pull a tear [...]

What Julia Child Taught Me About Teaching Voice What does Julia Child have to do with singing and great voice teaching? Craftsmanship. There is a special sort of delight in watching a craftsperson in the height of their art. Whether making a dish, painting a picture, or hand-crafting furniture, there is a special sort of hypnotic joy in observing these people creating [...]

The Vocal Marketplace

When I work with singers towards greater vocal freedom, a frequent question is "How am I going to sing for a market that wants X (insert quality of sound here)?" The human brain loves compartments and patterns. It might give us a sense of 'control' over our environment, and a sense of ease to 'know [...]

Some Quick Old and New Words on Messa Di Voce

Listen to this blog above. Ingo Titze lists the messa di voce as one of his 5 favorite warm ups for the voice. In his research, he has found the messa di voce does the following: Engages the layers of vocal fold tissue gradually in vibration, medial to lateral; Helps the singer match tension in [...]

How Teaching Singing is Like Gardening

"Teaching singing has much in common with the art of gardening. In many ways, one cultivates the garden of vocalism just as one approaches the flower garden: prepare the soil, plant firmly, water, fertilize, weed, and mulch, then enjoy the bloom. These responsibilities are equally rewarding. Careful soil preparation is an essential first step for [...]