And Please Don't:

  • Belt songs without learning to do so in a healthy manner
  • Clear your throat continually
  • Cough excessively
  • Smoke. Anything. Period.
  • Try to sing or talk over a cold, respiratory infection or laryngitis
  • Whisper loudly or sing in a "breathy" voice
  • Scream. Ever. Period.
  • Try to change your natural speaking voice (make it lower or raspy)
  • Talk over loud noises (as in bars, parties, sporting events, etc...)
  • Talk excessively on the day of a performance
  • Drink coffee or dairy products before a performance
  • Drink alcohol in the days leading up to a performance

 

Vocal Health

Here's a list of suggestions to help maintain your voice at its best, especially when performing:

  • Drink plenty of fluids, preferably water and tea
  • Vocalize daily
  • Warm up the voice properly before singing repertoire
  • Speak at the normal pitch for your voice (as in when agreeing with someone by saying "mmm-hmmm")
  • Invest in a good humidifier to keep your living environment moist, especially when using heat or air conditioning
  • Support your singing voice properly, even when "marking" or singing softly
  • Keep your larynx in a comfortable position, neither pressing low nor raising up unnaturally
  • See a qualified ENT if you have prolonged hoarseness, preferably one who specializes in the singing voice
  • Get plenty of rest, especially in the days leading up to a performance
  • Eat a healthy diet (plenty of good protein, fresh fruits and vegetables)
  • Develop relaxation techniques which help you to deal with stress
  • Avoid toxic environments, including the use of harsh cleaning agents with powerful fumes
  • Study regularly with a qualified vocal instructor - singers need a set of objective ears throughout their musical lives!