Categories

How to start a singing school

David Valks went from working in the recruitment industry to starting his own singing school. Read on for his tips on marketing, pricing and bookings.

‘BAST Training gave me the confidence to start teaching’

Former pro singer Jessica Thomas explains how BAST Training helped her start her own singing teaching business.

Want to write a book? Read this advice from a published vocal coach

Publishing a book helped vocal coach Becky Gilhespie boost her professional profile and expand her business. Read on to find out how and why she did it.

Can singing help people living with ‘long Covid’?

Can choir leaders use Singing for Lung Health strategies to help people with long Covid? Musical director Juliet Russell explored this question in a singing project with Covid ‘long haulers’.

How to make your 2021 goals a reality

2020 has been bonkers, but the New Year is just around the corner. While we may not be able to welcome it with tight hugs and wet kisses, we can make a start on our 2021 teaching goals.

Gift vouchers, get togethers and other BAST goodies

What will Santa bring you this Christmas? Why not ask for a brilliant BAST gift voucher so you can continue your professional development in 2021.

Stay strong and #fightthefatigue

Singing teachers are being urged to take stock of their mental health and to check in with their colleagues as part of the #fightthefatigue campaign.

How to become a Vocal Health First Aider

What is a Vocal Health First Aider (VHFA), and how can you become one? Alexa Terry, a proud VHFA herself, explains.

 

Three tips to help improve your website

Many singers start their search for a vocal coach by browsing online, so it’s crucial that your website is up-to-date and shows you at your best. Here are three tips to improve your website.

What to do when you just don’t gel with a student

What happens when a singing teacher and pupil just don’t gel? In the latest in our Difficult Conversations series, ALEXA TERRY looks at what vocal coaches can do if the teacher-student dynamic doesn’t seem to be working.

Graded singing exams with MTB: How they work and why they’re Covid-safe

With MTB (Music Teachers’ Board), voice students can sit their grade exams any day of the year from a location of their choice. BAST looks at how the system works and how it can benefit singers and teachers.

Courses and workshops for singing teachers

Here’s a list of courses, workshops and conferences to help singing teachers continue their professional development and sharpen their business skills.

How to nurture a singer’s authentic voice

Leading gospel and soul voice teacher Dr Trineice Robinson-Martin on helping singers to find their authentic voice. ­­­ Dr Trineice Robinson-Martin is a singer and voice teacher with one helluva […]

Choirs and Covid-19: ‘2020 has been tough, but we need to keep going’

‘Choir directors are an asset to society. What we do is about healing, and right now people need that,’ says choir director Naveen Arles. Naveen Arles is the artistic director […]

The Laryngeal Nerves

Alexa Terry and Line Hilton look at the laryngeal nerves and the role they play in voice production. The nervous system is a two-way information highway delivering messages from the […]

How to help male adolescent singers access the upper register

Vocal coach Jo Sear shares her tips on helping male adolescent singers to access the upper register. In her 15-year teaching career, Jo Sear has worked extensively with male contemporary singers. […]

Eight reasons why a vocal coach should have singing lessons

Teachers often put their own vocal development on the backburner to focus on their students. But vocal coaches can benefit enormously from having singing lessons themselves. We purchase books and […]

Episode 27 The Singing Master Chef With Becky Gilhespie

“We need to take diversions sometimes, to come back and realise what we’ve got” Becky Gilhespie has had an interesting journey from singing, to teaching to cheffing, and now, as […]

The Coaching Manual: a must-read coaching skills guide

If you want to sharpen your coaching skills, then grab a copy of coaching guru Julie Starr’s book. The Coaching Manual is a go-to guide for anyone who wants to become a […]

Updated guidance on singing and Covid-19

New guidance on singing and Covid-19 has been cautiously welcomed but has also prompted calls for more clarity.   For singing teachers keen to return to face-to-face teaching, there have […]

The Vocal Fold Layers

Alexa Terry takes a closer look at the vocal fold layers and the role they play in singing. Before we take a deep dive into the anatomy of the vocal […]

Ear training for beginners

Ear training is a great way to help singers with pitching issues. Top vocal coach Nerissa Campbell shares her tips on how to get started with beginners. As an experienced vocal […]

The right mix: a pro singer on the joys of teaching and performing

Napoleon Cummings explains why he ditched international touring for a career that combines teaching and performing. After five years on the road with a cappella supergroup Naturally 7, Napoleon Cummings […]

The benefits of BAST singing teacher training

Four former BAST students reveal how singing teacher training gave them the tools and confidence to coach others and build successful businesses.   Cat Ogden runs a vocal practice in […]

Singing With Your Whole Self: a guide to Feldenkrais and singing

Looking for a how-to guide on the Feldenkrais Method and singing? If so, grab yourself a copy of Singing With Your Whole Self: A Singer’s Guide to Feldenkrais Awareness through […]

Government guidance on singing and Covid-19

The UK government has released guidance on performing that includes specific recommendations about singing. The lengthy report, Performing Arts: Working Safely Through The Coronavirus, is for performers, venue operators and […]

The Hyoid Bone

BAST’s Alexa Terry takes a closer look at the hyoid bone, otherwise known as ‘the singing bone’.   “Clarifying, understanding and organising oneself around the hyoid bone… has amazing and […]

Covid-19 financial support – what about freelancers?

Freelancers, especially those shut out from the self-employed income support scheme, need more Covid-19 financial assistance. The government made lots of big-ticket economic announcements this week in an attempt to […]

Virtual Voice Conference – free workshops and special discounts

The world’s leading voice experts will all be in one place next month – online at the Virtual Voice Conference. Here’s what you need to know. The Virtual Voice Conference […]

Episode 26 The secret of authenticity with Nigel Richards

“Not only do you have to be a good artist, you have to be good at being an artist” During lockdown Nigel has been very busy helping college students to […]

Tips for teaching a student who’s had Covid-19

How can a singing teacher support a student recovering from Covid-19? Sarah Nixey, who is managing her own vocal recovery after a serious brush with the virus, shares her tips. […]

How to adapt a singing lesson if a student feels below par

When a student is under the weather or out of sorts, what’s a singing teacher to do? Alexa Terry shares eight tips on providing useful singing lessons – without any […]

Vocalzone, saviours or destroyers?

Some vocal coaches and voice scientists claim Vocalzone pastilles do more harm than good. But is there actually any science to back this view up? Alexa Terry, aided by Line […]

Teaching singing in person versus online

Will the Covid-19 pandemic change singing teaching forever? Alexa Terry weighs up the pros and cons of virtual and face-to-face teaching. Since the outbreak of Covid-19 and the enforcement of […]

How to help young singers shine

Top vocal coach Jono McNeil reveals how he helps young singers on The Voice Kids UK deliver knock-out performances. If you haven’t seen an episode of The Voice Kids UK, […]

Episode 25 The performer’s health starts from the inside with Nutritionist, Stephanie Moore

“We have these living creatures inside of us, this mass of different microbes that need to be looked after” Stephanie Moore Nutritionist and author, Stephanie Moore is a powerhouse of […]

The science on singing and Covid-19

What does the science tell us about singing and Covid-19? The world’s largest association of singing teachers explores the evidence in a new webinar. Here’s a rundown of what the […]

Episode 24 How Elphaba helped me understand my voice with Natalie Andreou

“Don’t take your voice for granted” Natalie Andreou Natalie Andreou’s CV includes lead roles in West End and touring shows as varied as Rock Of Ages, Wicked, Mama Mia and […]

How to tell a singer they need to see an ENT

You suspect a student has a severe vocal problem and needs to see an ENT. How do you break the news? Alexa Terry explores ways to approach difficult conversations with […]

The Voice Forum: Get your tickets for virtual voice conference

Good news voice geeks: The Voice Forum is going virtual this year! That means you can hear a host of top experts speak about vocal health and technique without stepping […]

Tips and insights on leading a virtual choir

Three choir directors reveal the challenges and rewards of taking rehearsals and performances online during lockdown. The Covid-19 lockdown left choir leaders facing a stark choice: mothball their singing groups […]

Ways to help a singer fix breathiness

If a singer is experiencing breathiness, how can you help? Alexa Terry shares her tips so get ready for hissing, chopping and tongue twisters. Imagine this: 14-year old Valerie van […]

Tips for teaching singing online

With the Coronavirus pandemic making face-to-face lessons an impossibility, many singing teachers and vocal coaches have had to quickly adapt to the world of online teaching. For those of you […]

Happy World Voice Day

It’s World Voice Day today so let’s celebrate the human voice and its power to bring people together. There’s a lot going on around the globe right now, but as […]

Vocal coach Mindy Pack explains The Voice Straw

US-based singer, vocologist and vocal coach Mindy Pack is the driving force behind The Voice Straw, a vocal training tool for singers. The product – a sleek collection of stainless […]

Review – Singing & Science: Body, Brain & Voice by Jean Callaghan

Vocal coach Alexa Terry gives her verdict on Dr Jean Callaghan’s book Singing and Science: Body, Brain & Voice. “When I began teaching singing 35 years ago, I asked myself […]

The OHNI Voice Book: Straight Talk with Dr Reena Gupta

BAST’s Alexa Terry review’s the latest book from respected laryngologist Dr Reena Gupta. Sam Smith, Adele, Wilma the kindergarten teacher, Caissie Levy, George Salazar, Bob from the local amateur dramatics […]

Postgraduate learning: Studying for a Masters (Voice Pedagogy)

The MA Professional Practice (Voice Pedagogy) offers singing teachers the chance to deepen their professional knowledge in a rigorous but supportive environment. BAST spoke to Debbie Winter, the driving force […]

Ten ways to increase your productivity

Increase your productivity by sharpening your focus and getting rid of distractions, writes Alexa Terry. ‘… most people do not achieve the use of more than a minute fraction of […]

Working with defensive and hesitant singers

What makes a singer reluctant to take the advice of their teacher? Here are two case studies for dealing with defensive and hesitant singers. Imagine this: 28-year old Jemima Jenkins […]

Book Review: ‘The Voice Teacher Influencer: Grow Your Studio, Increase Your Make More Money’ by John Henny

As a self-professed bookworm no trip to the shopping centre is complete without a visit to the bookshop to scan the sea of stories offering a 400-page chunk of escapism. […]

How Craniosacral Therapy can help the singer in pain

Craniosacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, hands-on approach that aims to release deep tensions in the body. Its purpose is to support relief from pain and dysfunction.  It is a […]

How to set effective goals in 2020 for you and your students

As the clock declares January’s arrival and renditions of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ are warbled, listen carefully and you might just hear the utterance of New Year’s resolutions floating into the […]

Episode 23 How research has informed my teaching with Dr Jenevora Williams

One of the things that we love about Dr Jenevora Williams is her open, intelligent and enquiring mind. She has contributed to the BAST webinar library and past live training […]

How to encourage your students to practise

“So, tell me,” says the singing coach with a smile. “How have you got on since our last session with the practise we set?”  *Cue montage*  Oliver: “I forgot to […]

Episode 22 The pioneering spirit with Dr Meribeth Dayme (1938-2019)

Dr Meribeth Dayme is a familiar name to many singing teachers. From her detailed but comprehensible books on vocal anatomy, The Performer’s Voice and Dynamics of the Singing Voice, to her holistic and energy-based […]

Case Study: Working with shy singers

Imagine this: a new client, 13-year old Polly Peters, arrives promptly for her singing lesson. As you  welcome her to your studio you notice her clinging to the sleeve of […]

Case Study: The one with the yelly child

Imagine this: 10-year old Sally Simpson arrives at our studio for a singing lesson; she argues loudly with her twin brothers between bites of a chocolate muffin and bouts of […]

Episode 21 From performer to healer, via an injury with Stephen King

Stephen King started his performance career with great promise. On the road to a dance and MT career, Stephen had to take a dramatic turn away from performing after a […]

Putting a price on it. The art of setting your fees.

For most of us, teaching is fuelled by the passion for voice – not by the desire to become the next Dragon in the Den. Website design, marketing approaches and […]

Episode 20 Voice science works – it really does! with Laurel Irene and David Harris

In this podcast Line Hilton talks to Laurel Irene and Dr David Harris from VoiceScienceWorks. These two met several years ago on Dr Ingo Titze’s Summer Vocology Institute at the […]

Being a self employed singing teacher

Being self employed has its perks. However, being solely responsible for all aspects of a business comes with its own set of obstacles, and we may find ourselves trying to […]

Episode 19 Starting over again with Lisa Perks

Now based in Melbourne, Australia, Lisa Perks started her singing and teaching career in the UK. In this podcast she talks about moving to a new country as a well […]

Vocal cords or vocal folds?

In The larynx, home of the voice! we looked at the outer aspect of the voice box, this time we move inside the larynx and take a look at the […]

The larynx: home of the voice!

Unlike other instruments, the singer’s instrument is not easily seen or accessed. This makes teaching singing quite challenging, but not impossible. By understanding the structure and mechanics of the vocal […]

Episode 18 Helping singers to create a positive relationship to their voice with Hannah Smikle

This podcast’s guest is Manchester-based vocal coach Hannah Smikle. Hannah attended the Brit School and talks about her experience giving advice on how a singing teacher can help prepare a […]

Episode​ 17 How the Naked Vocalist podcast changed my life

If you’re a fan of The Naked Vocalist podcast then this guest’s voice will be a familiar one to you. Line Hilton chats with Steve Giles who is a vocal […]

Episode 16 What I learnt about communication from couples therapy

You may already have seen Ryan Luchuck in his two-part webinar series breaking down voice science for beginners (Part 1 & Part 2). One of those multitalented types; Ryan sings, […]

Episode 15 Putting on a student show

Not to be confused with singer/songwriter, Cat Stevens, Kat is a singing teacher and owner of Aspire Arts Academy in Towcester. As with many teachers, Kat is trying to balance […]

Episode 14 Helping students find their purpose

In this podcast we hear from singing teacher & Intuitive Confidence Coach, Lilli Badcock. Lilli started performing arts at a dancing school as a child but found herself wanting to […]

Episode 13 Juggling all those hats with Juliet Russell

Like many singing teachers, Juliet Russell juggles a variety of hats including as a singer/songwriter, a vocal coach, choir director and music festival organiser. As well as running her own practice […]

Episode 12 Little Mix’s vocal coach on working with artists under pressure

In this podcast Line Hilton talks to Joshua Alamu, a professional voice coach with over 15 years experience as a singing teacher in the music and television industry. He has […]

Episode 11 Just getting started, a new teacher’s story with Matthew Thorns

This podcast is a bit different as I am talking to recent BAST Graduate, Matt Thorns, about his journey. Matt started out singing as a six-year-old chorister in Oxford. He […]

Episode 10 Lessons learned along the way with John Henny

Many of you will have already encountered this podcast’s guest, the humorous, John Henny. He’s a singing teacher and music school business owner and also provides training and education for […]

Episode 9 Growing from a two person op to sixteen teachers in four locations

Singer and songwriter Whitney Nichole started her teaching studio back in 2008. Over the past 10 years, her studio has grown from a 2 person operation to 19 teachers, nearly […]

Episode 8 The natural entrepreneur

Gemma Sugrue is one of those natural entrepreneurs. She started her own wedding singer business at college and on finishing her degree joined forces with a friend to set up […]

Episode 7 From hobby to career with Chris Johnson

  From a humble beginning in a local choir to one of the most highly regarded vocal pedagogs in the UK and co-founder of the very popular The Naked Vocalist […]

Episode 6 The art of patience and the singing teacher

Singer, Sarah Nixey has extensive industry experience as a backing vocalist and signed artist as the lead singer of UK based, indie rock group, Black Box Recorder. As often happens circumstance lead her to teaching and Sarah took on a new hat, that of vocal nerd! She talks to Line about her career and teaching – discussing challenges and victories, how she hadn’t realised just how much teaching is psychology, how she was surprised that so many singers need guidance to understand the importance of the lyric and how vital the art of patience is to the singing teacher.

Episode 5 Losing my voice was a turning point

Mindy Pack hails from Salt Lake City, Utah. She began singing professionally from a young age, taking up teaching as it seemed the right thing to do. Like many of us […]

Episode 4 Lessons learnt from building three singing teaching studios

Line Hilton talks to BAST Trainer, vocal coach and sound engineer Gareth Henderson. A British expat now ‘living the life’ in Perth, Australia, Gareth came to singing and teaching through lucky circumstance, […]

It’s World Voice Day!

Greetings singing teacher from all over the world and I hope you’re having a very good World Voice Day! What began in Brazil in 1999 has now been spread across […]

You ARE helping…

There is a lot of information on singing, coaching and pedagogy out there. A brief Google or YouTube search can be enough to start feeling slightly overwhelmed at times and […]

Episode 3 The pros and cons of teaching one methodology

Line Hilton, talks to BAST Trainer, Ian Davidson who is based in Liverpool. They discuss his musical journey and how he became a singing teacher as a result of working […]

Episode 2 Keeping motivated as a singing teacher

 Line Hilton, talks to BAST Trainer, Lisa Haupert. They discuss her musical journey from piano to singing, becoming a singing teacher after initially studying psychology then training as a […]

Harness your stage performance

As an artist, the best feeling in the world, is knowing that YOU LEFT EVERY OUNCE OF ENERGY ON THAT STAGE; that the audience received the gift of your Presence […]

A podcast for singing teachers

I don’t get excited too often, but I am definitely excited about our latest project the Teachers On Teaching podcast. I recorded the first one this week and it is […]

Episode 1 Getting started by getting thrown in the deep end

In our inaugural Teachers On Teaching podcast, BAST founder, Line Hilton, talks to BAST Trainer, Kaya Herstad Carney. They discuss her singing journey, becoming a teacher (by being thrown in […]

Mental block, or lack of skill?

For me, one of the most rewarding parts of being a singing teacher is being witness to changes in my students that go beyond just their singing ability. With great […]

Teaching the transgender voice

Transgender singers are currently on the forefront of voice pedagogy discussions.  Emerald Lessley’s recent dissertation provides significant experiential evidence as well as addressing important medical and social concerns in working […]

The Dancers Guide On How To Do A Singing Audition

Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to have had the pleasure and privilege (carefully choosing my words here) to evaluate dancers in the singing component of their audition […]

The Epi-what? The Epiglottis.  

What is the epiglottis? This is a very cool piece of kit that sits at the base of your tongue and essentially keeps you alive! It’s necessary to write about […]

BAST Singing Teacher’s Retreat 2016 Review

The BAST Singing Teacher’s Retreat 2016 was about as inspiring and uplifting a weekend as a vocal geek like me could hope for. My brain was filled to bursting with new science, research, techniques and teaching methodology. […]

The Acoustic Landscape

Do you want to understand the differences between classical and non-classical responses to the Acoustic Landscape all singers inhabit?  Well this webinar could be just what you’ve been looking for. For many years, voice teachers believed […]

The Ageing Voice And Singing

The Ageing Voice The Baby Boomer generation was born between 1946 and 1964. That means the eldest of this generation are 70 now. And there are a LOT of us! […]

Shifting Your Students from Over-Doing to Being Present

You know that moment when you’re having a conversation with your student, and they’re so animated, and you’re having a great back and forth, and they’re totally acting like a […]

The Singer’s Secret To Crossing Between Styles

Stylistic differences remain one of the most challenging perceptual walls for singers.  We hear an operatic soprano next to a belter and think they must just be built differently, or […]

What Is Vocology?

The term ‘vocology’ is being used increasingly in the voice and singing world. The word originates from voice scientist, Dr ingo Titze, who even has a book titled ‘Vocology. The Science […]

Why I became a singing teacher: Lisa Haupert

From the age of 12 until 40, most of what I experienced as a voice student can best be described as voo-doo. I teach singing because no voice teacher or singing student or vocal artist should have to put up with voo-doo.

Why I became a singing teacher: Kaya Herstad Carney

I cannot not sing and I’ve been doing that for all my life. A chronic sufferer of compulsory harmony disorder, and with at least two song ideas in my head at any time – singing teaching came as a natural yet unexpected progression of this.

Should I become A Singing Teacher?

So you are thinking about becoming a singing teacher. Fantastic! What a fabulous opportunity to take all the knowledge and skills you have accumulated so far and share it with others interested in singing, and who are willing to pay for your service.

Why I became a singing teacher: Ian Davidson

Like many others before me, I fell into teaching singing. I had recently graduated from the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts with a BA in Performing Arts Music and was trying to figure out what happens next.

Why I became a singing teacher: Gareth Henderson

My first brush with singing tuition was, like many I’m sure, a result of being a gigging singer who did not know how to use their voice correctly and did it some harm as a result.

Why I became a singing teacher: Line Hilton

As with many singers I started off believing I was going to “be famous”. It was a very vague and undefined goal, and given that I started as a clarinetist and ended up choosing the jazz route I was unlikely to be able to attain the kind of commercial success that a pop/rock singer might do.