Actors Should Study Singing

randy_buescherFor over 20 years I’ve taught voice and artistic development to professional actors, aspiring actors and young people.  They have gone on to major musical theater programs, to star on Broadway and large touring companies, become major label recording artists, starred in movies and TV and won major competitions.  I currently have three students on Broadway and many in touring companies, high profile local productions, TV shows and movies.  My track record speaks for itself and the insights gained are invaluable.  The thing is, not all of them are primarily singers but have benefitted from voice lessons.  You can learn more about me at www.yourtruevoicestudio.com  I look forward to contributing and answering questions in the future.

Why is it important for actors to study singing?

  • It broadens your ability to be cast.  If you are not confident in your ability to sing, you are cutting out a fairly significant part of the market.  I am not saying you need to be some world class singer, but you should be competent, so you can feel confident auditioning for musicals and roles that may require incidental singing.  Training with the right person will get you there.
  • Today there are many opportunities for actors who sing. If Anna Kendrick didn’t nurture her singing, she might not have been cast in “Pitch Perfect.” There are many roles every year on Glee. More and more actors are making the leap to Broadway musicals.  Singing is having a renaissance, fueled by shows like American Idol, The Voice, and the Got Talent series.
  • It will teach you to take strain off your voice when you are required to get into elevated speech.  The simplest definition of singing is elevated speech.  It will help protect your voice.
  • You will learn about vocal hygiene which will protect you.

Why it is important to study with the right person

There is a significant difference between taking with a classical teacher and someone that understands non-classical technique.  In women, a classical approach means bringing the high voice (head voice) down low.  It’s a very outdated sound that compromises the intelligibility of the words and does not fall in line with current standards of theatrical singing.  Over 80% of musical theater roles require some kind of belt.  Belt means a firm connection out of your speaking voice (chest voice) with an upper mix (sometimes hard, sometimes lighter) with vowels that still sound speech like.  Women that study classically, or have no training, when they try to belt usually have disastrous results.  They pull pure chest voice too high and then crack.  With men, the opposite is true.  Men come out of chest voice, but usually lack mixed production (a combination of chest and head) and have a shortened range.  Many of these men are actually tenors (the predominant voice type in today’s environment) and cannot take on roles they actually could.  They are misclassified as baritones which limits them to golden age roles.

A lot of classical teachers have started appealing to theatrical singers to increase studio volume, yet they don’t even know how to listen to the production of this type of singing.  You need someone that knows it inside out and pick up on cues from your voice and knows how to adjust it in a commercially viable manner.

Q&A

In future blogs I would like to periodically answer questions from you.  Please contact me with any questions at AskYourTrueVoiceStudio@gmail.com.

Along with your questions, if you are interested in inquiring about lessons, please use this same email address.  Randy can work with you anywhere in the world.

 

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Randy Buescher Randy Buescher is an internationally recognized expert in non-classical vocal technique. He is also well known as a clinician, author, vocal therapist, and researcher. His clients have won Tony Awards, Dove Awards, and Emmys, have been nominated for Grammies, and been American Idol finalists. He has also worked with artists from every major label.  He has presented and been a speaker for the Voice Foundation, NATS, Naras, and the Broadway Theatre Project, along with various universities, high schools and other institutions. Learn more about Randy at www.yourtruevoicestudio.com.

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