The “Edge Mechanism”

In Singing: Personal and Performance Values in Training, Peter T. Harrison quotes Husler and Rodd-Marling and then gives further definition of the “edge mechanism”: We come therefore to the very heart and soul of the singing voice, the coup de grĂ¢ce, if you like. I refer to fine muscle-bundles and fibres that Husler and Rodd-Marling […]

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Potential in Every Note

The messa di voce is the act of beginning a single pitch softly, making a crescendo, then a diminuendo. It was considered important both as an expressive device and as a training tool in many Old School singing methods. It is found in the method books of Garcia (Hints on Singing #29), Marchesi (exercise #174), […]

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Bile, Leeks, and Vocal Pedagogy

Anglo-Saxon cow bile and garlic potion kills MRSA   What does this have to do with singing? Empiricism! From the article, this quote from Dr. Cristina Lee (no relation) jumped out at me: “We believe modern research into disease can benefit from past responses and knowledge, which is largely contained in non-scientific writings.” The Old […]

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Empirical vs. Theoretical

Empirical: “1. originating in or based on observation or experience” and “2. relying on experience or observation alone often without due regard for system and theory” – merriam-webster.com It is sometimes written that voice instruction before the advent of “voice science” in the mid 19th century was “empirical”. Based on surviving writings, it seems that […]

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The business is always changing

I have been following several discussions lately about the nature of “the business”. People rue the passing of the old ways and the coming of new ways that seem to work against us. But it has always been thus. In the mid-1800s, Wagner took opera in a new direction that mystified the Italians. A whole […]

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