HELP! with a monotone singer

Discussion in 'Music Ministry' started by Debby in Philly, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    I have a new member in my choir who sings with great joy in the Lord, and more enthusiasm than most of the other members. One problem - she only sings one pitch. At least one choir member has complained that sitting next to her is difficult because of it. But we all love her dearly.

    Just yesterday she came to me and asked, "So how am I doing with singing?" It seems she knows she has a problem, and would like me to help her to work on it. I told her that I knew it could be worked on in some cases. I know some basic techniques, at least for teaching kids how to find their "singing voice," but I've never really done it before, one-on-one, and not with an adult.

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. JamesJ

    JamesJ
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    Hi Debby,

    I would suggest that you have her work on a very simple harmony part for a duet that you (or someone else) and she can do. Have patience and work her through it slowly (or rather, at her pace) one note at a time. I had the same problem getting my drummer to hit the right notes in some songs. I had to start at the root note and walk him up or down the scale to the harmony note. And then we'd practice it in very short phrases until we got the whole thing. It took some time, but it was well worth the effort. Hopefully this kind of exersize, and standard DO-RE-MI... etc scale exercizes will help.
     
  3. Gib

    Gib
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    Stick her in the alto section.
     
  4. TaterTot

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    well, I think giving her a harmony part would really not be wise. Most "monotones" think they are singing the melody.

    Actually, there are few true "monotones".
    I have an adult male student that I thought had no hope! After 3 years of slowly helping him to hear a pitch and match it, breathe correctly, and read music fairly well, he is now on the Sunday morning solo rotation list! He still has some minor issues, but he really WANTED to sing. And he did!
    Praise her for any small success! If you can work with her a little privately, start by you matching HER pitch on the piano and see if she can go up three notes. If she can, make a federal case out of it! [​IMG] Best wishes!
     
  5. Su Wei

    Su Wei
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    i would very gently take her out of the choir until she can sing properly.
    She needs training before she can join the rest of the choir!
    This is not to completly write her off her service in the choir... she just needs more preparation.
    I have heard stories of tone deaf people who were trained to the point that they could hold the correct pitch. But i guess they have to put alot more effort than others in order to sing in the choir.
     
  6. daktim

    daktim
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    How true. Much of good singing begins with good HEARING. Until you can hear the pitch properly and learn to distinguish between pitches, you're fighting an uphill battle.

    I hope all goes well with your aspiring singer! [​IMG]

    daktim
     
  7. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    Actually, she has some other things going on in her life right now, and has opted out of choir. She has been friendly to me, and has helped out in other things with the children when I have asked. So I don't think she has a problem with my speaking the truth earlier. Maybe I can work with her sometime in the future. Thanks for everyone's help.
     
  8. Mapipe

    Mapipe
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    I am not a monotone, but I have no B-flat. Actually, I have no tonal recall for that note. I had to have a music class for an elementary teaching certificate and I went to the head of the music department and told him that I could not carry a tune and no way could I pass a singing class.

    He tested me a little and decided that the best thing to do was an ear-training private class. We worked for the whole semester and he could not believe that I could sing most anything as long as it didn't have a b-flat in it. Said he wished that he had had me when he was working on his doctorate cause I could have been his whole project.

    Did not help my singing one bit. So, there are things out there beside being monotone that create problems for those wanting to sing.

    So my husband and I have made a pact....He doesn't play basketball in public, and I don't sing in public!!! LOL!!!
     

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