Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few responses to frequently asked questions. Lick on the title bar of the question you’re interested in to expand the box and read the response.
With proper training you can get a lot more out of your voice as well as prevent any injury or strain over a long period of time.
If you have a suspicion that you are not getting the most out of your voice, why not find out?
We can certainly work with you to pinpoint what your problems are, and to help you improve. All students notice improvement from studying this technique.
It’s more about the subtle coordination of how you use your air, than about having huge amounts of air. Eventually, you will learn to lean in with more air behind a balanced instrument.
With Melanie, you learn how to sing in the most healthy way for your voice. The exercises move you through your entire range giving you more styling choices and the vocal freedom to hit the notes you desire.
As an artist you can choose to stray from good technique for style purposes, but it will become a choice rather than an unconscious habit, and you will always know how to get back to good form, or “home base”, when you need to.
Reading ability is useful, however, for every singer, and necessary to some degree for classical and musical theatre. Playing an instrument, especially piano or guitar, is very useful for developing one’s ear, choosing keys for songs, learning melodies and harmonies, etc., but is not necessary in learning to sing.
Falsetto gives you the feeling of resonance up in your head, which you also have in head voice. The main difference is that strong head voice does not sound airy and can connect smoothly down through the bridges to chest voice, while falsetto has no “bottom”, and does not connect to chest. (It sounds like a separate voice)
I will not teach you to ‘sound’ a certain way, but will teach you how to get the most out of your voice. You can then apply that technique to any style of music that you choose to sing.
We teach the IVA Technique which will give you the tools to develop your voice in a way that is comfortable and natural to you. We understand that every singer is unique, so we won’t teach you to be a clone of ourselves; we’ll help and encourage you to find your own voice.
To experience this (safely), firstly put you hand on your neck below your chin and find your larynx (for guys this is your Adam’s Apple). Once you’ve found it, swallow. You will notice that when you swallow your larynx goes up.
To show how detrimental this is to singing, next, hum a continuous note (at any pitch) and swallow without letting the note stop… It is not possible!
When you sing with a high larynx this is in effect what happens. The larynx goes up making your voice jam up, which means that in order to get the note you want you need a lot more air and a lot more effort, which causes strain in the voice.
As the technique is not focused on a specific style, it allows you to develop your own style and sound, so you will be able to sing anything from Rock to Jazz and everything in between!
When it comes to practising, little and often is the key. 10-15 minutes a day is a good starting point – and if you can manage another couple of times for 5 minutes each throughout the day then that’s even better.
Frequency is much better than duration; you’ll make much more progress if you do 15 minutes of focused practice as opposed to 60 minutes of distracted practice! Your lesson recording will help you practise as you’ll be able remember what you did during the lesson, and know that you are practising just as you vocalised before.