The Colliver Method

The Colliver Method

Teaching someone to sing or speak confidently is not just about imparting technical knowledge, but more about making one aware of the things that prevent his or her voice from flowing freely. The sounds we make are largely symptomatic of what we do to them – in other words the sound your voice is making is directly caused by the way you think, the way you move, the way you understand and execute the technical information given to you, and the confidence you do or don’t have in your ability to do this. This being so means that before you can master the technical skill of singing, you must firstly become aware of the thoughts and feelings that are preventing you from expressing yourself confidently, and learn to change them into something more constructive and empowering.

The primary reason we are born with a vocal mechanism is to communicate, which at the most primal level secures our chances for survival. How is it then that we question our ability to breathe, support, project, pitch, animate, articulate and resonate, when these are the very components we need to create and project sound? Perhaps one of the reasons is that we have no conscious awareness of how sound is being produced when we first learn to speak as we simply mimic what we hear around us. This being so makes it essential that anyone wishing to improve their voice understands that everything we need is already in place and working naturally, unless there is some type of damage to the vocal folds.

Although I trained as an opera singer and am a passionate believer in the need for a solid classical foundation for all singers, I educate more from a place of health and wellbeing rather than external muscle manipulation. Many educators make the mistake of working on the action of singing from the outside, and yet all action is cultivated and motivated from within.

 

Technical information on its own is dry, conceptual and analytical making it devoid of personality, warmth, and authenticity. On the other hand, it is the emotions and feelings that carry the sound of the soul, so it is this combined with the appropriate physical control that allows powerful and grounded communication.

Only confident and empowered individuals will be capable of confident and empowered sounds, so the mastery of a skill is only possible when and if the blocks to this are removed. This is no easy task as much of our cultural and social conditioning is founded in fear, which takes great self-awareness to overcome. We are all unique individuals with a unique and individual journey to complete but most importantly, we must understand that we are each at different stages of creative development and therefore must be allowed to change and grow in our own way, in our own time.

No one is ordinary and uninspiring, we simply learn to be that way, so it is the unlearning of the boundaries and barriers we have placed around ourselves that becomes the true journey and the ultimate challenge in the learning of any skill. I cannot offer short cuts or quick fixes, although I have seen miraculous change in short amounts of time, but what I can promise is a vastly improved self-awareness and the solid classical foundation essential for vocal longevity, versatility, and confidence. It is said that what the world needs now is love, but in truth, what the world needs now is you– your passion, your humour, your courage, and your commitment which will most certainly lead you to your true and authentic voice.

With Love,