This is the final installment of the Daily Vocal Warm-up series!
This week will be all about composure, getting yourself in the ‘zone’, mentally and physically prepared for the most complex of lyrics to be sung without a single stutter.
Warm up your face by making little circles with your index and middle fingers along your jawline, then using your whole palms to rub your jaw. Then rub your palms across your whole face. Make sure your lips are really loose and blow the air out – using your support – making them vibrate like a horse.
Next, warm up your tongue. Do tongue push ups, stretches – touching your nose, each ear and chin in a clockwise and anti-clockwise direction; stretch your tongue at each tooth individually. Be precise – precision is more important than speed!
To strengthen your lips, press them together then explode the letter ‘b’. Repeat this with ’b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-bah’, making each ‘b’ precise and muscular. Then ‘b-d-g’ and -g-f-b’ and repeat, making them as fast as you can whilst still maintaining precision.
Next practice tongue twisters. You can find your own but here are some examples to get you started:
Billy Bob boils baked beans beautifully
Seven swift swans swam on the sea
Six thick thistle sticks (and then) Six this sick thistle sticks
Five fat friars frying fresh fish
Rubber baby buggy bumpers
Unique New York, New York unique
She sat upon a balustraded balcony inexplicably mimicking him hiccupping whilst amicably welcoming him in.
Many Men (sung to the William Tell Overture)
With all these ensure you are speaking on the breath, using your support, your throat is open and your body relaxed. Aim to project the words to a point a distance away from you to improve your projection.
Do all of the above in front of a mirror to ensure that you maintain the correct placed and supported and that diction exercise is clear and precise.
Do this every day – embedding your technique is the only way to be able to take it into performance. There are no shortcuts!
I hope the series has been helpful and please leave some feedback if you have the time!