Love To Sing
A relaxed and fun space for all lovers of singing who want to explore group singing, build harmonies and re-discover the joy of vocal music. Varied grooves and contrasting styles and genres will be covered. All levels welcome.
Who is this course for
Any person interested in getting more involved in music will find this course easy, quick and stimulating. Students require only enthusiasm and a willingness to explore music through their voice. No previous music study is required. Those who have basic training in voice/music and those who have considerable training will find the tutor's approach to performance and musicianship equally challenging. The tutor is experienced at engaging a variety of skill levels simultaneously and challenging every individual participant to strive for a greater standard.
What does this course cover
The course will aim to fulfil three main goals.
- Development of vocal technique
- Understanding of basic music theory and terminology
- Performance of music in a group setting
As part of the music theory and terminology that students will gain they will be able to:
- Correctly identify 35 key musical symbols
- Recognise several music phrases; utilising them in classes and conversation
- Understand the formal and jargon variations of musical terms.
Every session will involve a warm-up, giving the students access to a small bank of useful exercises and a clear understanding of when and how to use these. Further, students will be encouraged to develop exercises for themselves in order to specifically work towards their own vocal needs and goals. Each session will have a very short break in the middle.
The course will begin the study of various aspects of vocal technique and group performance skills and each session will culminate in a 'mini performance' within the class environment which will be recorded. Students can then access these recordings for further self-study and practice but also so the group can both enjoy their achievements, and track progress.
Over the course students will learn songs covering a range of material including traditional folk, pop, stage musical and sections of choral work. Some of these will be completed to performance standard and the group will undertake an informal sharing of these during the last session in a public space of the Mary Ward Centre.
Whilst this might sound slightly daunting, it is, in fact, remarkably easy to achieve and will be in the secure environment of a group activity. As one of the main goals of the class is group performance no student will be required to deliver solo material unless they are very keen, in which instance limited opportunity for this will be made available utilising the fact that many song traditions of the world are based around a 'call and response' culture.
Students at a simple practical level will be able to sing confidently in a group setting. Importantly, whilst studying these practical skills they will further have gained an understanding of varying aspects of music life: study, appreciation, theory, specific technique in relation to the voice as an instrument and performance. Students will have acquired the basic rudiments of reading score, understanding of their own voice and vocal range, acoustics and the related important decisions of a performer and have studied a selection of performance material in detail.
What will it be like
The natural ability of people to mimic sound will be utilised to deliver all the material of this course*. Songs will be both taught by simple rote 'call and response' and augmented by student self-study using pre-recorded material and access to lyrics and printed score. At this introductory level no previous music-reading ability will be assumed or required.
*A tiny fraction of the population can claim to find this task difficult but it is a habit that can be acquired.
What else do you need to buy or do
No material will be required. All materials will be supplied. Students keen to get the most out of the course should bring recording devices along in order to review the sessions and facilitate practice (most smart phones will suffice, but dictaphones and laptops could equally be used). In place of that, Internet access will also enable students to listen to the tutor's recordings of the sessions. Students should also bring drinking water with them to every session.
In order to further their own development and potential, students are encouraged to do much wider listening, singing and self-study of the provided materials in class. The ability to make music is based on commitment to frequent and regular practice with a direct correlation between time invested to skill gained.
What this course could lead to
Students will be made aware of further theoretical and singing courses run at the Mary Ward. As these courses will be internally assessed, students will also be directed towards furthering their private study through recognised music schools which provide academic and practical study. There are also opportunities to engage with music projects available to the public, for example Voicelab at the Southbank Centre. Participation in this course will directly lead to opportunities to perform alongside other recognised choirs in performance. (This is not mandatory.)
The singing class I took was for people who thought they couldn’t sing. I was really nervous at first but the teacher was supportive and inspiring so by the end of the class we’d all lost our inhibitions!Sonja
This course has concessions available for people who meet certain criteria
Got a Question about this Course?
Contact The Departmental Administrator.
Why come to Mary Ward Centre?
Mary Ward Centre is the adult education centre with a difference. We provide a wide range of subjects for people at all levels and run courses during the day, evening or weekend to suit your timetable.
Get inspired and enjoy excellent teaching in an environment where each individual’s learning experience is valued. That’s what makes Mary Ward Centre ‘the friendly place to learn.’