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"twang" And Volume.

The law of the sea.

"twang" And Volume.

Postby Alba » Wed Nov 30, 2016 8:29 am

I am a fifteen year old soprano.(My teacher is calling me a lyric coloratura at the moment).

My main interest is in early repertoire, from the renaissance, and baroque eras. I also sing medieval music, but that is mainly in choirs. Because I "specialise" in this music, and have insisted in doing so since I began singing lessons when I was thirteen, my teacher taught me to sing in a slightly different way to normal. I have not been made to overly develop my vibrato, nor have I ever had to sing over a large orchestra.

In the past I have performed in various childrens, and adults choruses,as well as choirs; and the following serious roles: Poppaea(Agrippina, Handel) Ottone(Griselda, Vivaldi)Speranza(L'Orfeo, Monteverdi) Melanto(Il ritorno di ulisse in patria, Monteverdi)Damigella(L'incoranazione d'Poppea, Monteverdi.)

My problem is that I am singing Clorinda, in Rossinis opera La Cenerentola.(And, importantly, the conductor has decided to keep her aria, in its entirety!!) This role is far more difficult than anything I have ever done. The coloratura is very different to that in earlier repertoire, and also, the orchestra is much bigger than what I usually perform with(67 as opposed to thirty!)

The conductor keeps making comment that I need to sound "bigger" in my upper register, and that "not everything is meant to sound pretty and lyric." He keeps mentioning that I need to add some "twang" to the sound, but I cant understand what he is talking about. When I asked, he said something that sounded as if he were talking about making the resonance from a higher spot, almost as if I were trying to sound more nasaly. Do you have any idea what he could be on about?

Secondly, how can I sing louder? Despite the limitations set on me by my age and by my training, I am sure I can sing over this orchestra, as it is not HUGE, so I am wondering how i would do that?

Thank you  
Alba
 
Posts: 39
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:51 am

"twang" And Volume.

Postby Jacot » Fri Dec 02, 2016 5:56 pm

I am a fifteen year old soprano.(My teacher is calling me a lyric coloratura at the moment).

My main interest is in early repertoire, from the renaissance, and baroque eras. I also sing medieval music, but that is mainly in choirs. Because I "specialise" in this music, and have insisted in doing so since I began singing lessons when I was thirteen, my teacher taught me to sing in a slightly different way to normal. I have not been made to overly develop my vibrato, nor have I ever had to sing over a large orchestra.

In the past I have performed in various childrens, and adults choruses,as well as choirs; and the following serious roles: Poppaea(Agrippina, Handel) Ottone(Griselda, Vivaldi)Speranza(L'Orfeo, Monteverdi) Melanto(Il ritorno di ulisse in patria, Monteverdi)Damigella(L'incoranazione d'Poppea, Monteverdi.)

My problem is that I am singing Clorinda, in Rossinis opera La Cenerentola.(And, importantly, the conductor has decided to keep her aria, in its entirety!!) This role is far more difficult than anything I have ever done. The coloratura is very different to that in earlier repertoire, and also, the orchestra is much bigger than what I usually perform with(67 as opposed to thirty!)

The conductor keeps making comment that I need to sound "bigger" in my upper register, and that "not everything is meant to sound pretty and lyric." He keeps mentioning that I need to add some "twang" to the sound, but I cant understand what he is talking about. When I asked, he said something that sounded as if he were talking about making the resonance from a higher spot, almost as if I were trying to sound more nasaly. Do you have any idea what he could be on about?

Secondly, how can I sing louder? Despite the limitations set on me by my age and by my training, I am sure I can sing over this orchestra, as it is not HUGE, so I am wondering how i would do that?

Thank you  
Jacot
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat Feb 22, 2014 9:38 am

"twang" And Volume.

Postby Baird » Sun Dec 04, 2016 4:31 pm

Hi Florence,

First of all you are very young to be singing all of the roles that you have been doing - at least in my opinion.  Now - granted - I haven't heard you... and I'm sure you are quite good or you wouldn't be getting all of these roles.

I just want to encourage you to slow down.  As to learning how to sing - I believe you should be learning to sing, period.  It is really not natural to sing without a vibrato - unless you are a boy choir member.  It's not that you cannot sing without the vibrato if it is called for - but it should not be exclusively taught.

Have you seen this version on YouTube?  It is excellent.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Hcl9vINoKg

Maria Velasco is Clorinda

As to what you can do now:  I'm copying some excellent advice from David Jones on undersinging which is probably what you are doing.  Look at the exercises and try them.  As to the "twang" - it's not that you want to sing nasally - but they probably want you to get more "ring" in the voice.  Keep your larynx down and breathe low - sing on an "ng" and go from there to a vowel.  The "ng" happens when your soft palette is high and the back of your tongue touches it - it will give you a feeling of where the "ring" is.  When you move to the vowel from the "ng" the vowel should be more correctly placed.

Unfortunately you cannot learn to sing quickly - so just do the best you can for the performance.  My guess is that in your attempt to sing without a vibrato you are probably "holding" the voice.  Don't worry about vibrato - just make sure the jaw is down and relaxed and support and sing.  

Not sure this will be helpful - but just enjoy the role and make sure you act it well.

Going forward - you need to learn to sing freely and with vibrato as well as without.  Perhaps you should allow your teacher more freedom.

Here is David's comments and suggestions about undersinging - I hope it helps!

Under-singing is often found in pop or music theater singers because they have now been relegated exclusively to using sound systems and microphones.  The process of supporting a softer approach in singing is rarely taught these singers, therefore they loose access to healthy singing technique. How does one correct this problem?  Why is this issue rarely addressed? The way to correct this kind of problem is to develop and work with exercises that demand that the body support, even as the singer is singing a softer sound. In actuality, most singers need more support to sing soft than loud. The instinct for the body to get under the voice is more present when singing louder than softer. On my instructional CD, "An Introductory Lesson with David Jones: A Resource for Teachers and Singers", I cover the subject of breath and breath management on the first CD.  It is critical for EVERY singer to learn to support soft sound.

Exercises to Correct Under-singing:

Again, check in the mirror to see if you are 'holding' your voice with a tight and forward jaw.  If so, then take your fingertips and relax the jaw slightly down and back.  Also place fingertips at the back molars and see if the jaw muscles just behind are thrusting forward at the onset or attack or as a crescendo is attempted.

Be sure to engage the support muscles of the lower body by using a hissing exercise.  Then go from the hiss to a tone on a hum or ng. Be sure to sing this sound softly, but feel the lower body muscles stay engaged.  You will feel the nasal resonance in the cheekbones as a result.

Make an agreement with yourself that you will work the voice at all dynamic levels, p, mp, f, ff. This will establish your sensations in all of your levels of sound. Try developing a phrasal approach using crescendo and decrescendo. First do this on middle voice pitches and then move up the scale.

Be sure to feel a slight resistance at the muscles beside the nose, as though you are feeling a pre-sneeze feel.  This I learned while studying with Virginia Botkin and with Dr. Evelyn Reynolds in New York. If you keep that feeling at the different dynamic levels, you will feel less disconnection from the body.

I wish you the best.  And don't go so fast!  It is so much harder to undo a bad technique than to teach someone from scratch.   We all get into bad habits - but just focus on supporting correctly, making a beautiful sound and opening up the voice.  You are so young and you have so much ahead of you!

Regards,

Pamela  
Baird
 
Posts: 40
Joined: Wed Feb 26, 2014 8:12 pm


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