Ariella's Vocal Notes- Blog

Don't just sing through your song, sing through your whole concert

By Ariella Vaccarino creator of Voice Lessons To Go

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My own vocal training is as an opera singer. I have been teaching voice for 25 years now. Every once in awhile I stop singing due to the birth of a child or overall distraction and then find myself having to get back into vocal shape. Just like all of you.

I am reminded as I am working myself back into singing through difficult arias (songs from operas), that I did not just sing through my arias, I sang through full Operas without dying (well my character usually died, but I was in great shape!)

STAMINA is so essential for singers. Whether you are preparing for an Opera, a role in a Musical, or a concert on a stage. You must not just train for the song. Train for the whole concert. Then you will be in good vocal shape. And if you can, train for the concert to be sung twice. Then you will be in insane shape!

I used to be like that. I could sing through my role in an opera twice during a rehearsal. It made the arias pulled out seem so easy and effortless on their own.

How to train for the concert or role:

1. Do it slowly or you will damage your voice. The minute your voice feels tired or strained you are done for the day.

2. Be consistent. You can't sing through things once a week. Start with 20 minutes a day for example and build up. You can sing every other day if you'd like. Just be consistent and regular.

3. Sing higher than your song’s high notes in your vocal warm-ups. Make sure you stretch your instrument beyond where you need to be so that the notes you need are easy to reach.

4. Keep slowly and consistently adding repertoire to your practice. Start with a few song and keep adding to them. Get to your goal of the full role or concert and then slowly try and go through things twice.

5. Keep doing vocal warm-ups at the start of every practice or in the morning to set your voice on the right track. Mine are great: Voice Lessons To Go, or use your own.

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6. Get in physical shape- Exercises like Yoga and swimming are amazing for building up your endurance as a singer with both your strength and breath.

7. Do breathing exercises- When your voice is tired you can still do 15-20 minutes of breathing exercises. (Not vocal). This will strengthen your abdominal support and capacity. It will also open your sound, add to the strength of your notes, as well as your endurance to sing through long passages and more music. FYI there is a good section of breathing exercises on v.1 Vocalize and Breath.

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8. Listen- for me that is playing through my music without always singing. Reading through words, translations, articulation, memorizing while resting my voice but still absorbing the material. For you that may mean listening to other recording to absorb ideas for your own performance.

I'll try and join you for this challenge! If you don't have a concert or role coming up. Put something together that you can work towards. Learn a new full role from a show or put a great concert line up together and practice it.

Let me know how you do. I'll start by singing through the role of Violetta in La Traviata (my favorite). It's been a long time since I have sung through the whole thing. I think it will take me a few months to get it all back in my voice. I am going to start by playing through it and singing sections. As my voice and muscles strengthen I will play through less and sing out more. I am planning on taking baby steps through this process to be sure not to cause any vocal strain or damage since it is such a demanding role. It will be a thrill for me if I get it back into my voice!

What are you going to sing?

Sing well!

Ariella Vaccarino (creator of Voice Lessons To Go)

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I am looking to develop healthy singing voices across the planet, to whomever loves to sing by creating free content and resources on quality singing instruction. Please help fund my endeavors by becoming my Patreon with any monthly pledge if you can. Thank you!www.patreon.com/voicelessonstogo

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