How do singers mantain their voice_ – quora

People have different routines, but the real #1 key for professional singers is how much we need to rest. Chest pain tightness One of the ENTs we work with at the Met likes to say that your cords can come together a million times in the course of a significant performance, which is an enormous physical load. Anxiety chest pain relief To some extent the exact amount of rest necessary depends on the individual, but there are lots of forms of vocal rest: total vocal rest (no speaking, no whispering, certainly no singing), or modified vocal rest (usually no singing or speaking loudly like in a restaurant or on the phone, but different people do it differently).

Feels like examples are instructive here.


Chest pain and cough A friend and mentor of mine was doing a Wotan in the Ring a few years ago. Stomach pain back pain nausea He’s in his 60s, and has done the role a million times, but he didn’t anticipate how much rest he’d need to build in. Back pain muscle relaxers I was in town and wanted to grab coffee and have a lesson with him; he cancelled everything when he got into rehearsals and went on complete vocal rest except when he was in rehearsal. Sharp chest pain when coughing This wasn’t a “crisis,” his performances were a massive success, etc. Sore chest pain He just knew that his best work would come with that much rest. Sore throat chest pain cough I have rarely done the same, but I’ve also never sung a role nearly as demanding, and I’m well less than half his age. Back pain pressure points But I still rest, and I won’t go out to noisy places the night before I have to sing.

Reflux is a big one. Back pain left side under ribs Singers should avoid eating for five hours before bed, and avoid soda, spicy food, alcohol, things that could make you cough, etc. Upper chest pain when breathing In performance mode, we adhere to this very strictly. Chest pain and shortness of breath when lying down In rehearsal it can be variable, but…

Even on vacation, singers should warm up 15–20 minutes a day. Chest pain shortness of breath This is something young singers tend not to be taught, but it’s something every mid-career singer I know has learned the hard way.

Stress and loneliness on the road are rough, and important because you’re on the road a ton, and that can induce tension. Stomach pain left side under ribs Lots of people meditate to work through this, or do yoga, which brings me to…

Staying in shape. Stabbing pain on left side of chest I know there’s a stereotype that singers are fat slobs, and it’s true that singers don’t have the body demands of actors, say, but it’s very hard to get through a long role without being in shape. Indigestion chest pain I read once than an Isolde burns as many calories in her 5 hours as a marathoner does in his/her 3ish. Pain in chest when swallowing I don’t know if that’s true, but singing a long role is exhausting, both physically and emotionally, and when I’m out of shape I feel it.

Lastly, paranoia about avoiding colds and flu is actually pretty justified for singers. Severe chest pain I am (professionally speaking) a useless human being when I get sick. Pain in chest when breathing in on left side Pretty much every singer I know will walk away from a person if they sneeze or seem visibly sick, cancel social plans if someone there comes down with something, etc. Chest tightness pain Many wear face masks in foreign cities and pretty much everyone wears face masks on international flights. Chest pain above left breast It sounds crazy but it’s just part of the job.

I’m not an expert, but I can tell you that when I started singing – a weekly 3-hour chorus rehearsal – I would be croaking about 3/4 of the way through, and would go home with a sore throat every week.

It eventually got a little better just with my throat muscles getting practice, so after a few months I would just be uncomfortable at the end of rehearsal, but still more or less able to sing. Menopause chest pain I thought that was it, or that I would keep making marginal improvement with time, or that I would need to find some techniques, exercises, etc. Light chest pain to – as you say – maintain my voice.

Some of these things are helpful: drink a lot of water; don’t sing outside your range; sleep well; limit spicy foods; don’t cough or clear your throat too much; etc. Chest pain at night when lying down etc. Chest and shoulder pain left side etc. Ongoing chest pain It’s all true.

But what I found since, is that the real key – at least for me – is to try to reduce tension while singing. Pain in left side of chest and shoulder When we sing, our muscles – certainly the throat, but also the jaw, chest, abs, shoulders, etc. Neck and shoulder pain left side – tend to tense up. Sharp chest pain left side comes and goes This obviously creates stress and fatigue, which is why we end up in pain or with no voice.

However, this can be avoided, or at least reduced, with careful and self-aware practice (and maybe sped up with the help of a vocal coach). Chest pain and shortness of breath It’s really really hard. Chest pain gas It goes against our body’s natural tendencies, so it requires re-training your brain and body to do something they’re naturally “opposed” to.

I’m nowhere near where I want to be with regards to tension, but over the last couple of years I’ve put some work into it, and now I’m usually quite happy to stay after rehearsal and bang out a couple extra songs with my buddies.

One of those buddies, by the way, is our fabulous associate director Elizabeth Davies, who’s written this excellent blog post on the subject of vocal tension. Regular chest pain Highly recommended!