I created the appoggio-method, which reflects my experience as a singer as well as a teacher. During my years in an opera company, I witnessed that many singers develop vocal and/or psychological problems. Studying voice doesn’t prepare you for what you are exposed to on stage, behind the scenes and life in general.
Trying to control the involuntary process of singing is doomed to fail and only leads to pressure, inflexibility and serious vocal problems. This in return has a strong impact on the psyche.
For singers, who are naturals, vocal problems often arise only after several years in the business. It is extremely helpful for them as well as for every other singer to understand the natural coordination,
to use it consciously without trying to interfere with it or control it.
To experience a natural vocal approach, i.e. that you can speak and sing without tightness, effort or voluntary control, feels like magic. This self-efficacy might also help you in other aspects of life.
Sometimes, however, emotional and psychological issues prevent us from singing and performing at our best. Therefore, I cooperate with Mathea Stern (body-oriented psychotherapy, matheastern.de). She helps to detect conscious and unconscious obstacles, to address and solve them, which smoothes the way to your authentic, individual personality. Find and enhance your very blueprint - and let your voice reflect it!
Appoggio is about giving up the voluntary control of the singing process and replacing it by a natural self organization.
For this we need 1) perceptive senses, 2) relevant anatomical knowledge, 3) skilled embodiment, 4) the art of intentionlessness and... 5) enjoyment.
1) When we start our vocal practice, we connect to our sensory awareness. By consciously opening ourselves to sensual perception, we clean the slate for new experiences, which is a prerequisite for growing and developing to the full.
2) Since we cannot see nor feel the main protagonists of our singing (larynx, vocal chords, diaphragm), it is helpful to have clear images of their anatomy as well as a distinct physical understanding of their functioning. I use rubber/fitness bands, (over-)balls etc. to clarify divers functions needed in the singing process.
3) Next we transfer the natural functioning of the voice in the art of singing applying embodiment and traditional belcanto exercises. Through these exercises and vocalises we gain and train the skills
needed in the classical repertoire. Ideale einfügen …equal sound quality, legato, effortless top register, supple ..4) Intentionlessness - easier written than sung - means not to interfere with the natural functioning of body, breath and voice. We are born with natural reflexes - breath and voice are two of them. Trying to control these inherently involuntary actions is doomed to lead to pressure, tension, inflexibility and serious vocal problems. This, in return, has a strong impact on the psyche.
5) We consciously practice in an explorative and playful way, because we are convinced that this attitude brings about enjoyment and serious progress.All this results in an effortless way of singing as well as a unique and authentic sound.