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Hitting the High Notes

Hitting the High Notes

Breathe in, breathe out. This is a routine activity that each of us does every day throughout the day. It is likely that this activity does not involve any conscious thought or awareness on your part unless you are experiencing an emergency. As an opera singer, the act of breathing is something that is done with full awareness. In order to sing expressly and freely through phrase after phrase of challenging music, I have a deep connection to my breathing apparatus and process. The deeper and more relaxed the inhalation is, the better the outcome is for the next phrase of music. Consequently, those in my profession focus a lot of attention on our lungs and the diaphragm, which lowers to make room for the lungs to expand during inhalation. While there are other things involved in singing beautifully phrase after phrase, the intake of breath and the support from the lower abdominals while exhaling and singing a phrase are of utmost importance. Healthy lungs that can easily expand and accommodate a lot of air are the starting point.

In an age when technology is making life easier, is it possible for technology to improve a singer’s ability to enhance the basic act of breathing and therefore improve their craft? If so, it would be in demand by singers and students of singing, who are seeking tools to bring their technique to the next level. Or for that matter voice teachers, who could use tools to help their students improve their capacity to breathe deeper and with greater ease. This tool wouldn’t only help singers, but would have practical advantages for: players of wind instruments; professional athletes; amateur athletes; and anyone seeking to improve their endurance or improve the effectiveness of their workout. It would help us all to hit the high notes!

by Sterling W.

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