Having always worked with singers who travel often, I have years of experience in coaching online, via Skype, Zoom or FaceTime. I have developed my coaching style to help singers achieve success through virtual sessions.
While there are some things we cannot do online - like playing a Strauss's Lied together through Skype or do a Cosi fan tutte Sextet rehearsal- there are many activities we CAN do:
Technical work on breathing, energy and body
Tired of all these modern singing techniques with fancy names?
Try a different approach based on our biology and the natural functioning of our breath. Let your voice to enter in contact with your body through your breath movement.
What is technique after all? It is consciousness, mindfulness if you want, our capacity to help ourselves in critical moments.
There is not much new to learn, since our body knows naturally how to sing. There are many things that we must "forget" - most importantly we must forget to "disturb" the natural functioning of our breathing.
Together, we can unlearn patterns that inhibit the full expression of your natural voice, discovering abilities that will enchance your performance.
Normally singers (and people in the audience) hate recitatives. I did too. Because nobody explained me how I should approach them. Through years of singing and coaching I have developed an almost scientific approach that is highly effective - combining poetry, vocal technique and dramatic capacities.
Your recitatives will sound how they should sound - not too much sung, not too much spoken, easy to sing and interesting to listen to.
Personalized accompaniment tracks
How many searches have you done on Youtube to find a accompaniment track that suites your voice and personality? One is too slow, another is too fast, sometimes the pianist does not consider that the singer has to breathe.
I prepare personalized study tracks for the singers I work with so you have opportunity to practice your arias comfortably at home. While not a substition for coaching, it will help you to maximize your results, assisting you in memorizing music and getting used to harmony and general music flow.
Improving Italian diction in sung text
There are a huge number of books and masterclasses out there that explain how to pronounce Italian and what are the rules for opened e-s and closed o-s, sounded s-s etc. It is very important of course and the pronunciation rules are the basis of good diction in any foreign language but I would like to go further in my sessions. I would like to help you to make it SOUND better, to show you how much you can improve vocally if you put the text in the right light.
Diction is also a very important part of singing technique - diction, focus and breath are closely related, which is why it is so important to practice your diction with a vocal guide.
Since I was once a singer too, and I always had to sing in a foreign language (there are not too many operas in Estonian) I understand the challenges and needs of my students. I went to workshops and consulted language teachers to improve my diction but it was not a big help. As a singer I need not just diction class but I need to know HOW I make it sound like Italian (or German, or French o or Russian).
A few technical tips for an online session:
- If possible, use your desktop computer with a wired internet connection to make the connection more stable.
- Download and install at least two of these applications: Skype, Zoom, Facetime - sometimes it can happen that one application does not work, in this case we can easily switch to the other one without wasting time.
- Keep another device handy - smartphone or tablet as a "virtual pianist" to access the accompaniment tracks on my youtube channel. If we use a recorded accompaniment during the lesson, the quality will be much better if we play it from a different device.