The Wholistic Voice - Donna Rose, soprano & voice teacher

~ Frequently Asked Questions ~

Can I learn to sing if I can't carry a tune or if I'm tone deaf?

Anyone can learn to sing, if able to hear and speak. Also needed is desire, commitment and persistence. I have taught many students to become singers that were considered by the world as tone deaf. It does take time and a lot of work, but you can definitely learn to sing and learn to sing well.

I want to sound like (insert your favorite singer here). Can you teach me to sound like this singer?

I work with students to find and develop their own unique voice. There is no better voice for you than your own. Everything that you are - all your thoughts, feelings and experiences, the physical makeup of your bones and body, your diet, if you get enough rest, etc. - goes into making up what your voice sounds like. No one else has your unique makeup and to try to sound like someone else can be detrimental to your voice and to who you are.

You may imitate a person's style or their way of phrasing, but never try to imitate their voice. As Ralph Waldo Emerson put it, "Insist on yourself, never imitate. Your own gift you can present every moment with the cumulative force of a whole life's cultivation; but of the adopted talent of another, you have only an extemporaneous half possession. . . . Do that which is assigned to you, and you cannot hope too much or dare too much."

Do you teach private lessons or classes? How often and how long are they?

I teach private lessons, as each person has their own unique habits, patterns and needs to address. Students come once per week, unless they want to progress more quickly and can come more often. The typical lesson is for 45 minutes. (See Lesson Policies.)

What ages and vocal levels do you teach?

I have taught students ranging from age 6 to age 70. However, I don't take students under 15 years old, unless they are exceptional in some way. Students range from starting out "tone deaf" to professional singers and every type in between. (See question below: What are some of the reasons people study with you?)

What do we do in the lessons?

Each lesson is tailored to the individual student and is different from student to student; but, generally, in each lesson, we will do vocal balancing and building exercises, addressing any technical problems or difficulties you may have. We will discuss practical matters for the application of what you are studying, and we will work on any songs that you are learning.

What style(s) of singing do you teach?

I don't teach style, per se. I teach voice: the technical, scientific, natural, spiritual, artistic expression; building, strengthening, balancing, and coordinating muscles and/or sets of muscles. I work to help you build and develop your voice (your whole body and being is your instrument), while at the same time learning to stay out of your own way. Singing is a natural process, and I help you develop the foundation and technique that will enable you to sing any style you choose.

What are some of the reasons people study with you?

People come to voice lessons for all types of reasons. Some come because they have always wanted to sing and are finally giving it a try. Some come because they want to have a singing career. Some because they already have a singing career, but need a better technique in order to keep singing. Some to get ready for competition. Some come for the therapy of singing. Some come to build their self-confidence and to feel better about themselves. Some because it's fun, and some because they feel better when they leave each lesson than before they came. Others come because they simply want to improve their singing voice, and some come to improve their speaking voice. Some students come because they have damaged their voices through vocal abuse and need help to repair the damage. They may come for one reason or a mix of many. But, for whatever reason, it is my privilege and joy to help and serve...

Donna Rose

The Wholistic Voice - a wholistic approach to singing: body, mind & spirit
-Donna Rose, B.M., Wholistic Voice Teacher

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