Singing well is a skill, acquired through consistent voice lessons and by developing a strong vocal technique. The voice is a difficult instrument to master as well as the most personal. It is inextricably bound up with the physical human body and its soul. The voice takes time to perfect.
You have to nurture it carefully because it is a delicate instrument, very temperamental, and it can not be replaced. Every voice is wonderfully unique. I listen to each voice and strive to bring out the innate potential of every singer. Each voice will blossom forth freely with a safe and healthy technique, which will ensure longevity.
I love to teach singing because the process has so many positive effects. For young people and hobbyists, singing builds confidence, self-esteem and poise. They loose their fear of not only singing in public but speaking in public. To sing is to experience a freedom and exhilaration, which is very uplifting. Singing is the voice of the soul, which needs to express itself. To sing is to free your spirit.
Singing also has positive effects on the speaking voice itself and upon one's listening skills. Vocal lessons will improve the quality of the voice by strengthening it, eliminating hoarseness and breathiness in the sound. Overall diction becomes clearer. Singing lessons will definately improve one's listening ability. I have reversed "tone deafness", a term which I do not like to use, because no one is really "tone-deaf."
For the professional, he/she depends on the voice for his/her livelihood, therefore developing that voice safely is a great responsibility. It is a moral and ethical responsibility as well. These singers put a great deal of trust in me as their teacher. My responsibility is to inspire and help them achieve the highest standards possible, since a career in this field is very difficult to attain.
However, singing a song goes beyond the voice. A singer must communicate the
text and then something more beyond the words.
The voice is the instrument used to present something more - the song. It is a means to an end. That end is the vocal performance. As a teacher I believe it is my responsibility to take the student on the journey towards the performance. This is not as simple as it may seem, if it is to be done well.
My goal is to inspire each of my students to reach his/her full artistic
potential. To this end it is crucial to develop performance skills.
The master class is an invaluable learning tool for obtaining a performance technique. The "Master Classes in Show Tunes Interpretation" are group drama workshops for singers, geared toward performance and audition preparation. I draw on my own experience as a performer and my dramatic training in London and New York, where I participated in a great many master classes with some of the greatest singers and coaches of our time. I so enjoy coaching songs from a dramatic perspective.
During the master classes, my students learn to communicate the text and develop their own unique performance style. At the same time they become accustomed to singing in front of people. They start to gain confidence and feel less vulnerable. A remarkable transformation occurs, which is magical and very exciting to watch. My students become aware of their body language and learn to combine the languages of music and words, fusing them into one powerful, dramatic, expressive whole. They learn to communicate from their souls and develop from novices into very moving performers. The singing/delivery becomes an art and they, the artists. It is thrilling and moving to witness.Finally the time arises, when all the study and processing is realized in the performance. There is one chance to get it right. Yes, there is always the next time and every performance will be different. That is the beauty and the challenge of a live performance. When everything falls into place there is nothing more exhilarating for the singer or the audience. It will be memorable and worth all the effort.
So, every year, in June, I produce a Vocal Showcase. It features my more advanced students, who are ready to share
their talents. The showcase enables them to gain experience and
exposure. There is nothing more rewarding for me as a singing teacher
than to see my pupils take flight in song, for we are all songbirds, who are
passionate about singing.