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Hi all,

I recently started researching and doing scales to improve my range.

I don't have a teacher...as of yet. I did have 2 or 3 bel canto lessons 5 years ago but didnt continue.

It feels like when i'm doing scales on OO or EE (changing OO to OH and EE to EH), i cant seem to get through F/F#.

To clarify, i can move onto G4 and B4 but it's a lot lighter, almost as if lacking any TA involvement - like a reinforced CT dominant heady voice. When i did have lessons, as my teacher heard me "flip/break" he would say things like "needs more air flow/keep the air going/keep the same darkness/vibrato - darkness/vibrato is good".

He told me on occasion that it's either my larynx coming up or my tongue coming down or some other awkward compensatory adjustment I make with muscles....and unfortunately still do.

Occasionally while doing scales on A as in "father" when i'm nice and relaxed and well supported and "leaning on the air" I can hear the sound just "pouring" or "flowing" out of my mouth with minimal effort and wow it is loud! It fills up the room and especially my ears with a very energetic and vibrant ring. It is also quite dark and full of vibrato but that "operatic" sound despite my best efforts to stay relaxed and not flip or go lighter is so hard to produce at the start of the passaggio. I try and continue the flow of air but it's like an invisible clamp strangles it off along with the sound.

Some recordings which although were "rushed" hopefully may help you help me.

Thanks in advance


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Hi Don_84,

Thank you for posting the recording, I have listened to them, il give you my view on it.

What i'm noticing is that your not allowing the voice to enter and go through the passaggio all the time. What I mean by this is that you are trying to keep the vocal folds thick as you go up and not allowing them to thin out. As you go up in this chest sound you are forcing more air through to try and get you there and then vocal folds get to a point and just go "no way I am not doing that" and blow apart thus hence the flip/cracking.

You need to train your voice to go from chest voice into the middle voice. Just do a very simple eee or ahh 3 note exercise, you have to work hard enough to stay on pitch but do not push the volume as you will just push the chest voice up!! The muscles have to learn to do the transition. I emphasise do not do it loud!!

The second thing is you need to sort out your air flow and support. The voice sounds gripped (tension creeping in somewhere) and this will be much more released if there was better air flow and support system underneath it.

Hope that helps. Give me a shout if you have any questions.


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Thanks for your reply Michael.

Should I try and kreep vibrato as I work my way up? I find that qhen I go lighter/softer that the tone is a lot more "straight" or plain - even boyish. Is this what im aiming at till the musculature strenghtens?

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Hi Don,

If you can keep vibrato on the way up then you know you have got enough tilt in your voice. Tilt is when the thyroid cartilages tilts forward, this gives the voice the "singing quality". If you don't have vibrato on the voice then you know you haven't got enough tilt and will you that very plain/straight toned sound.

It sounds like when you go softer in your singing the tilt is not happening as much. You want to maintain that singing quality (tilt) the whole time. So try doing a few crying sounds before you sing in a soft way. Practicing quiet is such a good way to practise, to learn to gain control and co-ordinate the muscles.


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