Breathing and Singing in the Facial Mask

In today’s lesson,  

  • Breathing into the facial mask
  • Tuning your middle voice in the facial mask

Exercise - Breathing and the mask

Once you are able to sustain a medium smile without engaging the parts of the vocal core, turn your attention to your breathing. 

  • Inhale, bring your breath level up into the facial mask. 
  • Place your fingers on your face to feel and identify the location of the breath current. 
  • Sustain medium smile and circle the top 3% of your breath in and out of the highest parts of the facial mask without moving or holding the vocal core.

Observe:

  • Head doesn’t move out of horizontal position 
  • Eyes remain soft
  • Jaw falls from face and the small space between the upper and lower teeth doesn’t close

Feel the air currents move inside of your facial mask.

FUNDAMENTAL VOCAL RULE - You will feel voice resonance in the same areas you feel the air currents. Therefore, open the breathing spaces and increase breath pressure WITHOUT engaging the voice to most efficiently condition the resonating spaces. Only intone or voice the sound after you have opened the resonating spaces.

  • Feel the size of the breathing circle in the facial mask. 
  • Circle your air current in and out of the newly opened spaces in your facial mask.
  • Observe:

    Place your fingers on the outside of your facial mask where you feel the air current.

  • Questions: 
    • What is the size of the air current within this area?
    • Has your breathing capacity increased with the larger smile.
    • Is your larynx open?
    • Does your head bobb up and down, or tip to the side with the breath?
    • Are your teeth pressed together?

Breathe into Your Smile

Destination: Into your eyes

Notice the circle of breath, which is the size of the breath cycle you used while performing the last exercise. “Full” now means that you breathe all the way up into your eyes, into the facial mask. This air current in the mask will provide the support to increase the volume level of your voice so you can be heard.

From now on you will inhale in to this new, fuller volume of air. This is your new “full." It will take a bit of practice to remind yourself to inhale past your old habits of "full" but this greater volume of air is the fuel that will increase the volume of your voice!

Exercise - Your Voice and the Facial Mask

Play with your Inside Voice

Now that you’ve opened the resonating spaces in your higher range, play  with the new tones and pitches.

  • Experiment with the higher sounds on a closed-mouth hmmm.
  • Explore the sensation of breath and resonance in the face and around the eyes in the facial mask.
  • Keep the sound small, so it is easier to track and feel.

Vocabulary

  • FACIAL MASK - The upper part of the face, from the lips, cheeks, eyes, brows and sinuses all contain open spaces where you will amplify the sound waves produced in the larynx.
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