Exploring Your Singing Resonators - dummies

Exploring Your Singing Resonators

By Pamelia S. Phillips

When you sing, you want to open the space in your throat and mouth to generate sound in all your resonators (mouth, throat, and nasal passages). Opening the space allows the tone to resonate in the space, but tone needs to move forward when you sing for everyone to hear you; otherwise, you’re just staging your own private concert inside your head.

Moving the sound forward means taking advantage of the resonators and allowing the sound to really ring in each resonating space while you intentionally propel the sound forward and into the room.

Try to propel the sound forward by visualizing the tone moving out of you and into the room. Some singers intentionally visualize that they swallow the tone to understand the opposite of moving the tone forward. When you feel that sensation, you can compare it to what you feel when you visualize the tone moving forward and into the room.

Knowing how to access all that resonance can help you fill an entire concert hall, instead of just your car, with great tone.

Swallowing vowels moves the sound into reverse — it’s the opposite of propelling the sound forward to achieve the resonance you want. To create resonant tones that resound around the room, allow the sound and sensations of the resonance to move forward. Follow these steps:

  1. Sustain an M consonant.

    Notice the buzzing sensation in your lips and around your face.

  2. Sustain an M consonant again for a few moments, and then sustain an ee vowel.

    It sounds like “MMMMMMeeeeeeeeee.”

  3. Now sing the same “MMMMMMeeeeeeeeee.”

    Note whether the ee buzzes or resonates in the same vicinity as the M. Most people say that sustaining the M consonant creates a buzz of vibrations around their lips or in the front of their face, so look for that same sensation when you move to the vowel ee.

  4. When M–ee is easy and you’ve explored the buzzing sensations for both sounds, try M–ooh, M–oh, and M–ah.

    Mah may be harder to feel, but try to sing ah and keep the same vibrations you found in Mee.

  5. When that’s easy, roll between consonants and vowels, singing words like many and moment.

    Maintain the same ring or buzzing sensation of resonance each time as you go from the consonant to the vowel.