We continue our journey and travel to Brisbane Australia and then Anchorage Alaska to discover more fantastic exercises for your students. Special thank you to Lauren MacKay and Christine Keene for sharing some fantastic singing activities for all ages!
(Please note: There is some crackling in the track due to internet connectivity when recording. It has been minimized and should not prevent you from enjoy the interviews!)
Lauren MacKay (Brisbane, Australia)
Lauren Mackay is the Principal Singing Teacher at the Ultimate Voice Development Studios in Brisbane, Queensland. Lauren has been a student of the voice since the age of 6 and a professional performer/vocalist for her entire adult life. Lauren has multiple undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications in speech, drama, singing and education and has published studies in the area of Speech Pathology (2010). Her vocal passions include voice science, performance strategy, educational pedagogy and the psychology of singing/the healing power of music/singing. Lauren has a deep appreciation and love of the “individual student” with a belief that the learning of singing should be catered to each student in a unique way, leading them to their ultimate, matchless success. Lauren is now entering her 21st year as a singing teacher and UVD Studios now hosts multiple music programs with several teachers now working at UVD.
1. Call and Response exercise- “It’s gonna be fun.” (Nikki and Lauren demonstrate on the podcast!)
2. Silly Sammy Snake- We hide our sneaky little character around the studio.
A fun and effective exercise because:
It completely captures the student’s interest/curiosity.
It works on articulation/blending.
Students build on the sentence (e.g.: slippery, slimy, silly, sneaky, snooping Sammy Snake) and at the end they have to count how many snakes they’ve found and say the whole sentence, e.g. SEVEN silly Sammy Snakes.
Great take home activity- students love to share this activity with their families and it then further enhances their development.
It links to other exercises- breathing/fricatives/pitching.
Christine RenÃ©e Keene, soprano, has not only been praised for her â€œremarkable hall-filling voiceâ€ and â€œwell-supported sopranoâ€¦drawing just a little reverb from the beams and wallsâ€, but also for her brilliant acting and delightful stage presence. Christine has sung with every opera company in Alaska â€“ most recently with Anchorage Opera (The Impresario as Madame Warblewell) and Opera Fairbanks (Don Giovanni as Zerlina), Juneau Lyric Opera and Opera to Go (Le Nozze di Figaro as Cherubino). Christine is an active recitalist and soloist, most recently with the Anchorage Concert Chorus, Anchorage Festival of Music and the University of Alaska. In addition to teaching a full complement of voice students in her private studio, she is an Adjunct Professor of Voice at the University of Alaska, has held and currently holds numerous titles with the NATS Alaska Chapter (National Association of Teachers of Singing) and is on the NATS National Membership Committee.
Favorite Exercises: Shout out to Mary Saunders Barton and Nancy Bos, Christine shares great exercises for transitioning between the registers. Christine shares simple and effective â€œCross-Trainingâ€ voice exercises to ensure our singers have every opportunity available to them in their careers.