Garcia on the Acquisition of Agility

Q: While the faults of emission are mending, is there any other study to be pursued? A: The acquirement of agility. Q: How is this to be obtained? A: By the study of diatonic scales, passages of combined intervals, arpeggios, chromatic scales, turns, shakes, light and shade. Q: How long will this study take? A: [...]

From Two Registers to Three…(Registrational Mitosis?)

We now come to 1840—a year made noteworthy in the life of Garcia by another important advance in his career. Since his appointment to a professorship at the Paris Conservatoire, his reputation had continued to be steadily consolidated, and his clientèle included, besides those who were being trained for the musical profession, a great number [...]

From Whence a Voice Science? Part 1 of 2

Scientific knowledge of the vocal organs began to influence methods of vocal instruction about the third decade of the nineteenth century. During something like eighty years before that time the vocal organs and their operations had been a favorite field of investigation for a large number of physicians and acousticians. For a long time teachers [...]

Cultivation vs. Production in the Voice Studio

One of the most interesting words that comes up over and over again in treatises and writings on the singing voice pre-1850 is the world CULTIVATION. Books on singing from pre-1850 or so are entitled, "Bassini's Art of singing: an analytical, physiological and practical system for the cultivation of the voice." Another singing text is "Baker's Formation and [...]

Manuel Garcia–The Grand Old Man of Music

Manuel Garcia was born in Madrid on March 17, 1805. His has been not merely a long, but an active life, and is unequaled in respect of its duration in the records of musical art. It amazes one to think that he was an infant 7 months old when the battle of Trafalgar was fought, was 10 [...]