How to learn a whole song with your whole self

While we’re all starting a new school year and learning mountains of new music, check out this series of tips on how to learn a whole song with your whole self from ATsinging founder and faculty member Matt Cahill.

You get a new song or aria. Now what? Here’s one teacher’s method for learning a song from “never seen it before” to a full embodied, dynamic, truthful story-telling experience. See if any of these steps are helpful to add to your own learning process. If you have any questions, especially about Alexander Technique terminology like “whispered ah” and “use”, we’re always happy to answer an email:

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Day 30 Alexander Technique & Singing Tip: The Royal College of Music Voice Faculty Thinks the Alexander Technique Should Form the Basis of Singer Training

There was an experiment in the 1950s, giving Alexander lessons to the singing students at the Royal College of Music. The results were very impressive and a scientific comparison was made with a control group from the Central School of Speech (This is written up in Barlow’s collection of writings about the Technique, ‘More Talk of Alexander’). 

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Day 29 Alexander & Singing Tip: Allow the Ground to Support You

ATsinging teacher Matthew Morris works with soprano Rachel Brown on allowing her hip joints and leg muscles to stay easy, so that she can allow her weight to transfer to the ground without interference, and receive the bounce back ground-reactive force support from the ground up through the top of her head, which allows for an easier suspension of her throat and vocal production.

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Matthew Morris
Day 19 Alexander Technique & Singing Tip: Day 4 of 4 on Breath!

Today is day four of our four day series on breath, but is by no means the end of the conversation! Consider it just a wrap up for this part of our introduction.

Today: read on for some ideas about that holy grail for singers: proper breath support!

At ATsinging we like to think of the idea of breath support more as breath energy, which is something that if you’ve read through the last three posts, can start to see how like singing, breathing can be (and should be when functioning optimally) a whole body activity.

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Day 16 Alexander Technique & Singing Tip: Part 1 of a three day series on the diaphragm

In singing, there’s a lot of sometimes seemingly conflicting information about breathing, especially concerning the diaphragm. We hope to clear up a few of those ideas in the next three posts.

For today, we’re concentrating on getting a better, static, picture anatomically of some of the major players in the breathing process: the trachea, the lungs (bronchioles highlighted in red inside the lungs here), and the diaphragm, all highlighted in red in the accompanying picture.

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