Masterclass "Vocal and expressive technic for chorister"
The Masterclass in "Vocal and expressive techniques of the chorister" is one of the most experimented and appreciated didactic activities that I have been proposing to amateur choirs for years.
It is a formative moment planned and realized in a total synergy between the director requesting it, the individual choristers, the choirmaster and the teacher of the course. It is the choir director who knows the training needs of the singers and directs the activities of the masterclass, by identifying among over 50 goals those that he considers most suitable and useful for the improvement of the choir.
They are grouped into five macro areas that initiate and lead the group and the individual to the full development of their potential:
I Technical area: Basics of vocal technique, breath, backing, resonance, code reading.
II Educational targets: social, ethical and semantic goals.
III Cognitive learning objectives: attention, perception, proprioception.
IV Metacognitive learning objectives area: group mission, synergy, interdependence.
V Transversal learning objectives area: non-idiomatic reticular communication, non-verbal communication, expressiveness.
The conductor identifies the objectives of greater importance in each area and then rank them in order of priority that reflects the needs of the choir in a scale from 1 to 3, where 1 indicates a target considered secondary or of lesser interest, 2 a primary objective and 3 a priority objective.
To increase the usability and effectiveness of the course's program, each chorister compiles a form where he/she indicates his expectations and the results wished for by the attendance of the Masterclass. Each chorister also compiles a voice screening form where he/she will indicate the technical difficulties encountered in a performance or any negative effects in the post-performance (drops in voices, pain).
At this point, with the recommendation of the choir conductor and the choristers, I prepare muscular, articular, respiratory and vocal exercises, which will help the cantor to solve various problems, re-establishing the physical and vocal balance. The program will deal with topics considered of high priority by the choir conductor and will deal also with more general topics.
The masterclass course is mainly practical and involves the personal experimentation of the proposed topics, through individual and group activities and simple and progressive exercises, using teaching aids provided free to the trainees, along with the lecture notes. All activities are also summarized in a multimedia presentation that illustrates all the topics of the course.
WHERE DO THE MASTER CLASSES TAKE PLACE?
The masterclasses are activated at the premises of the applicant choir or in the premises that they consider suitable for this purpose. The teaching material and the teaching aids are provided by the Coro Polifonico Regina Pacis association (www.cororeginapacis.org), with which I have been collaborating with on this training path since 2007.
HOURS AND DAYS OF LESSONS
The masterclass takes place over three days, which can be subdivided in a modular way, for example on three consecutive Sundays or in two weekends: half day on Saturday and all Sunday or vice versa, or in a full immersion from Friday to Sunday. The times are the following: in the morning from 9:30 to 13:00 and in the afternoon from 15:00 to 19:30. The course can be reshaped according to the specific needs of the students attending the course.
At the end of the activity, the choristers and the Choir Director will fill out an anonymous questionnaire, with which they will evaluate the contents, the consistency and validity of the course, of the teacher and the proposed program, in order to provide an activity closer to the expectations and needs of the cantor, the Director and the organizers of the course. This allowed me to grasp the general and specific angles and expectations of those who choose to attend a Masterclass, observation that I use in the articulations of the activities that I propose.
Enzo Marino – trainer InChorus