Vocalises for Beginners:
Encouraging Resonance

Vocalises for beginners need to teach them how to execute vocal TECHNIQUE, not just stretch their muscles with a warmup.

Quiet little voices need to learn how to find RESONANCE in their tone... see if these vocalises will help!

Encourage vocal resonance with these singing exercises



Here are what the "Encouraging Resonance" warm-ups look like (scroll down the page for the free download link):

Many of your beginning vocal students will come to you with soft voices that will not carry beyond the first row of the church pews.  That's not necessarily bad; at least they're not shouting, which could hurt their singing muscles! 

This is an opportunity to train them to achieve volume correctly, by tone placement instead of by using lung power!  

What you are after is singing with resonance.

First of all, they need to know that you are after a certain kind of sound!  Imagine a mosquito, buzzing around their ears...  I like to use this sound a lot, when giving singers an example of what I am after.

The "mosquito" trick: find your note and start it with a tiny sound, then "swell" it.  But before opening up big with the sound, focus it. Find the bell-like tone that comes from placing the sound where it can "ping".

What? How?  Well, it takes practice, and much exaggeration of vocalise exercises to reliably be able to find that focused sound again and again.

I like to to employ the mosquito effect by singing with the student on a sound halfway between a closed "Hnng" and an open "Huh".  I make a hand gesture - my pinched finger and thumb flying around the student, pretending to be a mosquito.  

As the imaginary mosquito swoops first nearer, then farther, its whiny volume (which is I, singing "hnng") increases and decreases again.  This is not a pretty sound!  However, the irritating sound is very focused and resonant!

This whining sound is easy for my vocal student to imitate.  We buzz together for a little bit.

Then, we go to our song, and try to put this sound into the song.  We find our trouble note, achieve the ringing mosquito noise, but then drop the jaw for BIGGER, more normal, singing sound - and now we have resonance in singing.

Another way to think about resonance is to imagine that singing is all taking place in the HEAD, back behind the ears.  Think of the sound resonating inside there, vibrating in the skull.

And another technique: Take an almond, or a cinnamon stick, or even a pen or pencil, and bite down on it with the back teeth.  This creates space automatically.

Vocalises for Beginners: encouraging resonance in the singer's tone.


Download Vocalises for Beginners sheet "Encouraging Resonance"

Now sing "Eeeee... "  The position of the jaw should result in a slightly different sound than the student is used to; LOUDER, more resonant; a sound that can carry easily.  This greater volume should happen without breathiness or pushing.

"Eee" is usually my favorite vowel for practicing resonance, but all of them should be used.   From bright to dark, they are "ee, eh (ay), ah, oh, oo..."

Going through the break with continuing resonance is especially difficult! Don't abandon these vocalises, or your own version of them, in a hurry!





The Adventures of Tonsta, Volume 1, is a book about a young boy travelling over mountains and fjords from village to village, encountering trolls and helping folk in distress.

The Adventures of Tonsta

A perfect read aloud storybook
for little boys or girls. 

The Adventures of Tonsta highlight the travels of a very young boy with a good heart, who goes about helping folk in trouble.  

With a red cap on his head and a sack of tools slung over his shoulder, Tonsta seems to meet people in distress wherever he goes.

Lots of trolls in this book.

Available at Amazon!





Recent Articles

  1. Home on the Range Free Guitar Tabs & Sheet Music

    Home on the Range, free guitar tabs are an easy way to show your guitar student how to dress up a song with secondary chords. First show them the simple version with 3 chords, then move on to the fanc…

    Read More

  2. Hark the Herald Angels Sing Lyrics & Sheet Music

    Hark the Herald Angels Sing - an easy Middle C piano arrangement for young students still learning to read notes, and a guitar tab arrangement too!

    Read More

  3. Carol of the Bells Guitar Tab

    Carol of the Bells guitar tab for your student who is beginning to stretch their abilities with classical or fingerstyle guitar playing. These tabs are LEGIBLE!

    Read More

  4. Oh Holy Night Sheet Music for Elementary Piano

    Oh Holy Night sheet music for elementary piano - NOW with an EASIER secondo part that your intermediate students can play! The easy solo shares the melody between the two hands.

    Read More

  5. Christmas Song Lyrics and Free Piano Sheet Music for Holly and Ivy

    Christmas Song Lyrics & sheet music of "The Holly and the Ivy" for your intermediate & now BEGINNING piano players: 3 energetic arrangements with flowing left hand chords and one SIMPLE Middle C arran…

    Read More

  6. Gabriel's Message: The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came

    Gabriel's Message: "The Angel Gabriel from heaven came" is a beautiful Christmas song that is almost unknown. It makes a lovely vocal duet. - now updated and SIMPLIFIED.

    Read More

  7. Teaching Young Singers Who Have No Music Background

    Teaching young singers: what do you do with a non-musician who can't even read their own language, much less music notes? Here is some QUICK ADVICE!

    Read More

  8. Coventry Carol, Also Known as Lully Lullay or Lully Lulla

    Coventry Carol, a beautiful and somber English Christmas Carol. With EASY piano duet parts for elementary and early intermediate students.

    Read More




Oklahoma musical book

Carrie,Voice and Piano Teacher:
This site is FABULOUS. For all the reasons you explain on the site itself--this is exactly what piano teachers need! (I still need to go look at the vocal music). Wow. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

Church choir warm-ups music book

Marta:
Thank you for the free downloads! I'm a private teacher and I teach piano and beginner voice as well. :) I've been running my studio for about a year and I've come across the same issue; I don't want my students to have to purchase an entire supplemental book for only a couple of songs. So thank you for this site...some great downloads!!

Spirituals for Two singing book

Ruth:
Thanks, Dana, for your excellent customer service.

Amber:
Thank you! THANK YOU!!! For keeping the beautiful art of Opera alive! I stumbled upon this site and I'm so happy I did!

Comments

I'd love to know about your favorite warm-ups, perhaps passed on to you by a dear teacher, or one you have made up yourself and come to rely upon. Tell us how you use it!








Sign up for "Take Note!" to see what's new every month.





Search Music-for-Music-Teachers:



Comments

Have your say... Leave me a comment in the box below.