What Methods Do You Use In Your Lessons?
Methodology is a tricky concept when it comes to lessons. You’re basically talking about the whole thing added together. The interaction with the student. The training of the muscles. The acquisition of new concepts. And the effort to integrate the learning with your own life.
But let’s start with the basics. We try to make every student feel as comfortable as possible in the lessons. We don’t do harsh judgments, baptisms of fire, or trial-by-error in our teaching. Though the material changes from day-to-day, our approach does not. We believe that skill is best acquired when you enjoy the work, and that’s what we strive for.
Next is the muscular training. The mind may be important for understanding the work, but it’s the muscles that have to change in order to develop your voice in a new way. So our work is all about the muscles, giving you exercises tailored to your learning style which you can practice day-to-day. Without daily practice, the change isn’t taken up in the cerebellum, the home of muscle memory. But we help you in every way we can to make the change possible.
Concepts are also important. We work a lot with accents, and often run into linguistic concepts which are difficult to deal with. Being able to understand the more finicky aspects of English comes in handy. All our teachers are trained in the phonetic alphabet, an important tool for learning a new accent. And our teachers are experts in the vocal anatomy – a crucial way to develop fast-acting vocal change.
Finally, we try as much as possible to integrate the training with your own life. We use key phrases from your own life so that the training is memorable and immediately relevant. For doctors: “how are you feeling today?”. For teachers: “Let’s do the register.” These are small changes, but we know how effective the small things are in improving our lessons.
How Are These Methods Different From Other Practitioners?
Our lessons are different from other practitioners for two reasons. Firstly, we take our exercises from a wide range of sources, backed up by MA training from Guildford School of Acting. In any one lesson, we’ll be using a mix of exercises from Malcolm Morrison, Jo Estill, Kristin Linklater, Arthur Lessac, and dozens of others. We endeavour all the time to make our lessons match up with the latest research.
We also use the latest technology, including developing our own, to meet the student’s needs. We work with VoiceHacker Ltd to develop apps to help student’s practice, including one which measures resonance and analyses your vocal tone in conversation. We also use existing technology used by linguistics departments, such as Praat, and singing studios, such as spectrograms.
We also record every lesson and send it to the student, occasionally with video tutorials made just for them. The usefulness of this practice cannot be overstated, and is largely unique among voice studios in London.
What Does This Mean For The Student?
You can rest assured on two fronts. First, that your teacher is using the most up-to-date methods and has a passion for constant self-improvement. Second, that every piece of technology available will be brought to bear to make sure your learning is the fastest, most efficient, and most fun it can be. Making learning happen is a science – and we work as hard as possible to make them as good as possible.