How well do you know your body? Well, the “here’s how” and “what’s what” of your vocal instrument – your entire body, not just the larynx – are contained succinctly, clearly, and simply in this practical book, now in its second edition.
What Every Singer Needs to Know About the Body, Second Edition gives singers and their teachers a Body Mapping resource – from anatomy and physiology to body awareness – that helps them discover and correct misconceptions about the way their bodies are built and the way they function. In doing so, it provides maps with detailed descriptions of the structures and movement used in breathing, phonation, resonance, articulation and gesture – illuminated with numerous illustrations and supported by many exploratory exercises.
Because the structures and movements inherent in the vocal instrument are the same for every singer, they apply equally to every kind of singing. Differences in style result from differences in the choice of movement. Understanding and mapping the structures and movements used in singing provides the technical foundation for all singers. The purpose of this book is to provide singers with that foundation. This book does not espouse a single method or attempt to teach singing techniques. Rather, it describes the movements of singing with accuracy and detail so that singers may experiment on their own and communicate with each other more effectively. This has never been done before and it is a substantial contribution to music education in general and the education of singers in particular.
For the second edition, the authors have greatly updated and expanded the content throughout the volume, reflecting the latest research on and knowledge. Some specific additions include:
- New images and exercises on breathing
- Substantially revised chapter on physical expression
- Fresh material about visual focus and facial expressions
- Many updates and extensions in response to reader feedback
- A comprehensive glossary of key terms
In one author’s words, “This book is needed because singers deserve to know the truth about their bodies. There are many pedagogy books that present the anatomy and physiology without helping singers find its practical application. There are books that take a holistic approach without sufficient anatomical and physiological detail. What Every Singer Needs to Know About the Body will strike a balance, giving singers the information they need and the tools to embody it so that they can use the whole body for creative vocal expression. It will de-mystify the process of singing, opening up a world of artistic choice.”
The first edition of his title is also available in a Japanese translation.
Table of contents
by Barbara Conable
How to Use this Book
by Melissa Malde
1 Body Mapping, Kinesthesia, and Inclusive Awareness
2 The Core of the Body and the Six Places of Balance
3 The Singer’s Breath
4 Creating a Singing Sound
5 Resonating the Voice
6 Singing as Communication: Mapping the Structures of Articulation
7 Physical Expression for Singers
Appendix A: What to Do about Performance Anxiety
Appendix B: The Scientific Basis of Body Mapping
T. Richard Nichols