Taking voice lessons can seem so complicated. When I was in university, every vocal student drenched themselves in the process of learning voice. From reading books to constant practice, every voice student abandoned their personal lives and committed every second to vocal technique. When I started teaching voice lessons, I realized how daunting this could be to new students and drove away students with amazing potential. After that, I created a consecutive Six-Step Method for students. While the process is not easy to accomplish, every student can see a clear map in front of them and can create their own schedule of practice that doesn’t take away so much from their personal lives. The SeanyMac Six-Step Method is:
- Chest Voice
- Head Voice
Breathing– The power muscles. Singers learn control and stamina by learning how to breathe. The breathing muscles are EVERYTHING.
Chest Voice-The chest voice is the same voice we speak with. While it is the easiest to use, it is difficult to control. When learning how to control the chest voice, students will be able to maintain sound, strengthen vocal muscles, and relax certain muscles in the throat that can poorly influence the voice.
Head Voice- After learning how to properly control the chest voice through
proper breathing and muscle use, we focus on the upper part of the students’ register by engaging the head voice, similar to but often confused with the falsetto voice. The head voice is the higher, “choral” sound, that is usually easier to sing. While this voice is easier to sing, controlling and strengthening it takes some practice.
Transition- Every person has what is called a “break” in the middle of your vocal range. This is one note that separates the chest voice and the head voice. The break has two tones on either side of it and this whole area (around five notes) is called the passaggio, Italian for “the passageway. The passaggio is the weakest part of the voice. Singing back and forth across this area is very difficult so we teach students how to properly navigate so improper muscles do not become engaged.
Mix-This is pure Rock and Roll. Once transition is accomplished, we teach students how to change their head voice into a mix voice. A mix voice is singing with the posture of the head voice, very easily, and making it sound like a full chest voice. After training, the entire vocal range sounds like a full voice. That’s when the fun starts.
Range- Many teachers and students push the higher parts of their voice. Although that is important, constant work on the upper range tends to thin the voice. At SeanyMac Studios, we work on both ends of the range, strengthening the higher and lower registers together.
You Can Do It
Don’t get frustrated with complicated voice lessons, try the SeanyMac Six-Step Method. With this technique, you can accomplish so much in a short period of time without having to abandon your personal life. Come see me in Hong Kong or take a live online voice lesson. Looking forward to working with you!!!
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