Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Recital Certificate and regular practice


........and the teacher very happy !


For the first time in very many years one of my adult exam candidates said to me this week, that she was ' almost feeling as if I can actually enjoy this exam' ! This lady, P, has always been one of my more reticent pupils, almost always shying away from singing concert solos. Now, believe me, she is a very competent singer indeed, whose voice was quite small when she first began lessons. It has now grown to sizable proportions and sounds full and warm. She even has the occasional very acceptable top B ! You are a really good singer P, repeat twice very day !

Duets with M she will sing from now until Christmas, and will take a real lead in small part songs when the ladies sing ensembles. I am seriously hoping that feeling relatively comfortable and happy with her Recital Certificate programme might give her the push she needs (dare I say 'kick') to sing in the big concerts we hold a few times each year !?!?

The programme is delightful, and covers all genres and languages, infact the only worry I have about the whole performance is that I can only play about 65% of the accompaniment in Faure's En Priere ! I have no worries about her part of the bargain !

Some of my other candidates are, however, not quite as well prepared, but in fairness to most of them this is largely due to many bad throats and coughs ! Sometimes I want to hold up my mature pupils work ethic as a shining example to the youngsters, showing them that solid and regular work, for however short a time each day, ALWAYS gets results !

Cramming two weeks before music exams just never works........unlike some academic exams. One has not only to learn the nitty gritty of the notes, rhythms and words, but one has to feel totally comfortable with the piece of music in ones voice. Only by regularly singing at the top of one's voice can that feeling become the norm. It brings us back to muscle memory ! Our bodies will do it if we give them enough practise, we can then build in for the nerves and adrenalin, knowing that the automatic pilot will kick in.

I hope I live long enough to see the day when every pupil will blindly obey and sing every day, if only for 10 minutes, and reap the manifold vocal results !

I thnk I'll need to live to be 152, and even then I'm not sure.............Sigh.



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