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  • Kathryn Carpenter

Good vocal technique - a checklist!

Here is a checklist to think about when working on your vocal technique! Some of these ideas came from a variety of sources including my own voice professors, Tricia Pine "Rejoice in Your Voice," and from the resource, Vocal Technique: A Guide for Conductors, Teachers, and Singers. I would highly recommend the book just mentioned as well!

Vocal practice check list:


Breathing:

Am I using diaphragmatic breathing?

Am I using a low belly breath?

Are your feel anchored into the ground?

Are my knees slightly bent?

Am I expanding below?

Am I allowing the back to open?

Are my shoulders in neutral position?


Relaxation:

Are these areas relaxed?

Tongue

Neck

Jaw

Upper lip

Shoulders

Face

Arms, fingers


Soft palate:

Is my soft palate lifted, like a yawn?

Do I feel a cathedral space?

Am I stretching into the yawn space?

Am I lifting the soft palate and relaxing the tongue?

Is my jaw relaxed while lifting the soft palate?


Resonance:

Am I using my five resonators?

(Larynx, pharynx, mouth, nasal cavity, chest resonance)

Am I singing into the mask?

Do I feel a buzzing in the nose and forehead?

As I go up the scale do I feel as though the tone is going up over and back of my head?

Do I have plenty of space (yawn) space as I sing up the scale?

If I want a “nasal” sound, I can sing in the mask and not lift the soft palate.

If I want a forward sound, but not nasal, I can keep the soft palate down.


Larynx:

Is my larynx relaxed and not lifting as I go higher in pitch?

Is my larynx staying low?


Tongue:

Is my tongue relaxed?

Is my tongue in a resting position right behind my lower teeth?

Is the tongue going back in my mouth as a sing pitches?

Do I feel any tongue tension?


Vocal Onset (how I start the tone):

Hard onset: let a grunt sound

Soft onset: like a soft “h”

Remember, we want a balanced onset! (not too soft and not too hard)

How am I sending the tone?

Am I pushing the sound in any way?

Am I relaxing the larynx?


These are all helpful items to think about when practicing and preparing for auditions, performances, and recitals!


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