Contemporary Vocal Technique in the Choral Rehearsal: Exploratory Strategies for Learning
Winnie, Brian J
MetadataShow full item record
University of Washington Abstract CONTEMPORARY VOCAL TECHNIQUE IN THE CHORAL REHEARSAL: EXPLORATORY STRATEGIES FOR LEARNING Brian J. Winnie Chair of the Supervisory Committee: Geoffrey Boers, Director of Choral Activities School of Music Singers today are often asked to perform in a variety of styles and genres, causing the choral teacher to be a specialist in multiple disciplines including areas such as vocal pedagogy, music history and ethnomusicology. Within the traditional choral canon, choral teachers are expected to teach authentic performance practice that incorporates changes in vocal production amongst varying style periods from Renaissance to contemporary choral music. Furthermore, over the last decade there has been a tendency for choral directors to program more multicultural music that requires an understanding of cultural ideals and vocal qualities. This diverse repertoire requires a different vocal approach than the standard western classical tradition. An added challenge is students' desire to sing contemporary commercial music (CCM), yet most teachers are not being trained in vocal technique associated with CCM. Since choral singers are asked to create a variety of vocal qualities and switch between those qualities within a single performance, teachers should be trained to utilize a multifaceted approach to developing vocal technique. However research shows that there is a significant lack of training in the areas of CCM. This document examines the correlation between bel canto and contemporary vocal technique through teaching the main tenets of breath, onset, and resonance. These tenets are examined and explored in relation to bel canto scholarship, modern vocal science, and the Estill Voice Training System (EVTS<sup>TM</sup>). By developing a pathway between these styles teachers enhance their teaching of diverse repertoire without having to learn an entirely new pedagogy. Exploratory strategies and vocal exercises for developing a more multifaceted approach to teaching vocal technique are discussed throughout this document in conjunction with the warm-up process and individual instruction within the group ensemble setting. These exploratory exercises can be added to the teacher's current rehearsal process to enhance understanding of vocal technique associated with all CCM.
- Music