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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

On the Index Card Please Write:

One of the things you most fear about teaching Music Theater for contests. Email address if you want a copy of the powerpoint.
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Kjerstie Johanson Artistic Director MadCap

Melanie Cain, DMA Fresco Opera Theatre


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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

I. Common Terms, Different Definitions II. Vocal Mechanics: How the Voice Works III. What are the Differences in Technique? IV. Researching the Songs - Movement - Gestures - Poetry - Musical Hints from the Composer V. Masterclass VI. Q & A
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Common Terminology/ Different Definitions

Support:

Classical: the word support goes hand in hand with breath. Musical Theater: support is more about giving the thicker cords an anchor underneath.

-Using rest of the bodys muscles to provide support.


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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Common Terminology/ Different Definitions

Intonation:
In both Musical Theatre and Classical Singing, intonation is has two different levels.

One, intonation problems due to pitch matching inadequacies. Second, intonations issues due to incorrect vowel placement (use if interiors of the face and throat) and support issues. Spin: velocity and shape of the resonators
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Common Terminology/ Different Definitions

Diction:

Both classical and musical theater demand good diction. Musical theater takes more liberties with correct pronunciation due to character and possible accents. -More Speech like Diction, not as formal, intimate
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Common Terminology/ Different Definitions

Vowel Placement:
Both classical and theater singing demand good vowel placement. Terms include Mask, Forward, Nasal, Twang.

Classical singing uses a more open, heady placement.

Musical Theater is placed more forward and more in the speaking area of the voice. Singing in the chest voice, head voice, and mix. -Mix vs. Belting

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Common Terminology/ Different Definitions

Vibrato:

What is it? Lots of theories!

Slight variation of pitch


Free oscillation of the vocal cords from (1) an open pharynx or open throat along with (2) healthy "closure of the cords"

Even sub-glottic breath pressure. This is regulated by the "support system" which involves the abdominal muscles. Movement of the Larynx: Shaking of the throat muscles like a tremble

Pulsing with the Diaphragm Movement of


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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

VOCAL MECHANICS

Basically, its all the same vocal mechanism! Differences come in how the mechanism is manipulated to make specific sounds.
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VOCAL MECHANICS
Step 1: Turn on the Power Inhale: Diaphragm lowers, creating open space for the lungs, air rushes in. Click Exhale: Masterreverses, Diaphragm comes back to start to edit Process subtitle style position, pushing the air out of the lungs up through the trachea.

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VOCAL MECHANICS
Step 2: Good Vibrations The cords close over the air stream creating pressurized air. The air pushes through the cords. The air pressure falls underneath the cords sucking them back together. This is Click to editthe Bernoulli Effect.styleopening and closing known as Master subtitle This action happens hundreds to thousands a time per second!

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VOCAL MECHANICS
Step 2: Making the Pitch The pitch is determined by the length and tension of the vocal cords, the speed of the vibrations. This length and Click to editcreated bysubtitle style larynx. tension is Master the muscles in the

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VOCAL MECHANICS
Step 2: Shape Up! At this point the sound produced is much like a trumpet mouthpiece. The RESONATORS are going to shape that sound into unique tones and vowel shapes. Click to edit Master subtitle style Resonators: Throat, Nasal Passages, Mouth, Lips, Tongue, Palates.

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Technique: What are the Differences? Laryngeal placement

Classical: Usually a lowered larynx, creating a taller space in the throat: deeper/darker sounds Instrument comparison Flute vs. Double Reed instrument Musical Theatre: Higher larynx: Smaller space, smaller/ poppy sound.

Character voices: Larynx placement can be used to create character voices: i.e. Wicked: Glenda
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Technique: What are the Differences? Cord Thickness

Classical: Thinner, longer cords, only using the edge of the cords: Breathier, lighter tone. Musical Theater: Thicker, shorter cords using much more of the cord: Speech like, Full tone.

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Technique: What are the Differences? Amount of air

Classical: Can take a larger breath, there is much less pressure under the cords. Musical Theater: Much smaller, often higher breaths: Because of the full closure of the cords, need much less pressure under the cords. (For full belt/ chest voice.)
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Movement

Musical theater: blocking the scene, setting the stage, less is more is the general rule. -New change, no costume mention.

-Not about the things, but more about the intension. Ex. Setting up chairs

Classical: Can I move? When do I move?


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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Gestures

With both styles, gestures should be inspired by text and emotion. Not necessary to sign language each word. Examples

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Poetry

Read the text allowed without the music, memorize it like a monologue. Note inflections, what your voice naturally does.

-Poetic reading, Paraphrase in modern speak: -Relate personally, stories/movies. Help the student reframe it in a contemporary way.
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Poetry Tu lo sai By Torelli Alfred Version

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Poetry Someone Elses Story from Chess
Long ago, In someone else's lifetime Someone with my name Who looked a lot like me Came to know A man and made a promise He only had to say And that's where she would be Lately, although the feelings run just as deep, The promise she made has grown impossible to keep And yet I wish it wasn't so Will he miss me if I go? 7/12/12

Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Musical Hints from the composer

Examples of accompaniment characterization

Placement of breaths, rests, high notes, etc.

Why did the composer write it like that?

7/12/12

Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Musical Hints from the composer Examples of accompaniment characterization

Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again from Phantom

Giants in the Sky from Into the Woods

Mandoline by Faur
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!

Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again from Phantom

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Giants in the Sky from Into the Woods

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Mandoline by Faur

7/12/12

Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Musical Hints from the composer

Placement of Breaths, Rests, High Notes, etc.

Fine Fine Line from Avenue Q Silent Noon by Vaughan Williams


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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Fine Fine Line

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Research: Doing the Homework!


Silent Noon

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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Masterclass Time See it in Action! Jemima Liposcak The Perfect Relationship from Bells are Ringing
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Commonalities Between Classical and Musical Theater Singing WSMA Conference 2011

Q&A

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