Chances are throughout 2020 you have watched countless artists bestow their casual home concerts to you. Last year certainly brought down all the production values and drew our attention back to the basics. Basics often included a simple microphone stand, a guitar, and if you're lucky, even some other instruments. Lockdown certainly increased the amateur set up but the calibre of performance was still there, although quirky and low-fi. Kiwis are very familiar with this ‘number 8 wire’ mentality so chances are, you caught Six60 or even Benee belting some tunes in their living room. Perhaps during those long months of lockdown, you entertained the idea of starting to learn an instrument or maybe even to learn how to sing?
With things now relatively back to normal, it’s time to jump at that desire and take up the mantel of singing. Were you one of the people who shamelessly busted out your own rendition of ‘Super lonely’ while navigating through traffic? Or perhaps, you were one of the lucky people who screamed ‘In the air’ at a L.A.B’s summer gig. Whatever stage of singing you are at, there is room for you to grow and flourish, so let’s jump into what you can expect.
Benefits-wise there are a huge range of positive experiences you can receive from starting your vocal journey. These range from physical, through to psychological. Are you ready to answer your creative call? Want to launch into the study of the voice? Let’s take a deep dive into what singing can do for you.
What are some benefits that you will receive from singing?
Embrace a sense of relaxation and leave stress at the door!
If you're prone to stress, did you know that singing out loud can reduce your levels of cortisol in your body? That’s right, simply by busting out your favourite song, you can decrease the hormone that causes you stress, making you feel more at ease in the process. Whether you are haunted by a never-ending workload, or studying for that scary exam, we all fluctuate our levels of stress throughout the day. If you want to give that cortisol the boot, then fret not; just open your mouth and launch into song. Even if you’re at the start of your singing journey, you don’t need to be an incredible singer to receive the relaxation benefits. Crank up that radio on the way to work and boost your body and mind.
Give your mental health a good boost!
Exactly like you would for a gym workout, when you sing, your system releases positive endorphins. This makes you feel on top of the world. And again you don’t need to be amazing at singing from the beginning, your body will still release those feel-good endorphins. Why not open your mouth and bust out those radio tunes, your mental health will be stoked.
Stay connected with others
When you sign up for singing lessons your teacher will have you instantly plugged into their own network of musicians. You will develop a sense of belonging as music enables you to connect with a community of people. In a study done on music interaction the reward centre area of the subjects' brains lit up when they sang certain songs. The link between singing from either your experience or someone else’s increases your level of empathy. This in turn can help you feel more connected to others.
Singing lessons: what will they look like for you?
As with anything, when you start something brand new it’s vital to remember that navigating the world of singing is a journey. Your voice is just as much an instrument as the trombone or piano. Just because it’s already inbuilt within you, doesn’t take away the skill level that is required to become a great singer.
After a few lessons, you’ll learn there are various aspects of your voice that showcase a unique tone and range. The most common area of the voice is known as the ‘chest voice’. There is a technique called ‘belting’ where you use a loud and strong voice register. On the other hand, your ‘head voice’ is soft and often appears breathier and has a wispy tone. As you begin to confidently move between your chest and head voice, you will begin to create a ‘mix’ voice. This combines the strength from your chest voice and the softer tone of your head voice. Remember that no two voices are alike so take the process with a sense of wonder and curiosity.
Your singing journey should be rewarding, here’s what you might learn
- Remember to breathe! Sometimes life can be pretty full-on, it’s hard to always remember to breathe deeply. Every now and then we need to drop our shoulders and remind ourselves to exhale. The more you can master your breathing the more in control you will be of your body. It will be a part of your singing teacher’s job to help you understand the fundamentals of how you breathe. Especially for those longer notes, because those can be super tricky. Your breathing technique is one of the core aspects of your training, You’ll even notice other parts of your voice improve when you master breathing.
- You will feel a sense of confidence: Being a great singer is equally about confidence just as much as skill. Your vocal teacher will be uplifting you at every new level you reach. They will also become one of your biggest cheerleaders. Learning to sing well takes time so don’t let slow progress worry you. Your singing teacher will help you unlock your full voice and soon you’ll be more and more confident.
- Elongate your back and stand in your power: You should want to support your voice from every angle. This includes how you stand. What kind of stance should you take? Keep your back straight and direct, with your feet slightly apart. This will help get your air flowing correctly. If you don’t keep your back straight your airflow and intonation will suffer. Every word deserves to be heard that you sing; so stand tall.
Let’s help you find a singing teacher
Auckland’s 'Claire Martin' can get your voice performance ready!
For those in Auckland, there are some great singing teachers all equipped to help get to your next singing level. Claire Martin is one of these teachers, who will help you get a good understanding of your singing voice. Based on Auckland’s North Shore, Claire teaches a range of styles, everything from classical, musical theatre, right through to pop, and contemporary. Her philosophy is approaching singing as storytelling, to develop an awareness for lyric interpretation. If you're wanting to see more Auckland options for singing teachers, take a look at this blog here, which details some other teachers.
‘Stages’ in Hamilton will help elevate your voice abilities
Are you based in Hamilton? You could try ‘Stages’ which will get you ready for that karaoke performance or simply level up your abilities. ‘Stages’ will cover getting your breathing support down, nailing that posture and lots more. You can find the lessons in Claudelands, Hamilton. If you're wanting to look at some other options in Hamilton, check out this blog to find other alternatives.
'The Music Shed' In Tauranga has some great tutors to help you
If you would like to focus on the mechanics of your voice and what it can do, then maybe a more scientific approach could be for you. 'The Music Shed' in Tauranga provides a perspective of the voice from a science standpoint. They follow new vocal research. You will also learn the fundamentals that include the ever so important breath management, as well as the art of relaxation. Check out these other singing teachers in Tauranga here.
How about Wellington? 'Stuart Clark' could be for you
Stuart Clarke will give you a great understanding of your voice. He’s based in Miramar, Wellington. You'll learn all the fundamentals of singing that include breathing support and vowel pronunciation. Curb that kiwi accent and get to know more subtle vowel sounds. If you're wanting to see more teachers in Wellington check out this blog here.
Finally, Christchurch can offer 'Rachel Bayliss' and many more:
Rachel keeps joy and self-expression as two pillars for her singing lessons. The environment she creates is very welcoming for beginners. She offers an integral sense of community in her work. If you're looking for more Christchurch singing teachers, you can find them here.
Take Singing Lessons with Superprof
Superprof is a tutoring website where you can see a large list of tutors who are all equipped to teach your vocal lessons. Your first lesson is on the house, so you can trial the tutor to see if they’re a good fit for your musical journey. So, now that you know all the benefits of singing, you are ready to dive into finding the best tutor for you. Launch into song and start your singing exploration today, you won't regret it.
The platform that connects tutors and students