I wrote The Singer’s Audition & Career Handbook to provide a comprehensive guide to the training, audition technique, and professional development essential for launching and sustaining a rewarding career in classical singing. The book includes contributions from nearly 70 singers and opera industry professionals, as well as a Forward from mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato.
Musicians of all kinds benefit from understanding the basics of how their instruments work. Complete Vocal Fitness: A Singer's Guide to Physical Training, Anatomy, and Biomechanics offers accessible descriptions of the fundamental components of vocal anatomy – laryngeal function, articulation and resonance – and serves as a a primer on sport-specific training for vocal athletes.
My views on vocal pedagogy bear the influence of W. Stephen Smith, my mentor and friend. His book The Naked Voice: A Wholistic Approach to Singing is an inspiring and easy read, and includes detailed descriptions of many of the exercises I apply in the studio every day.
Vipassana meditation is a practice that can support and accelerate your vocal studies, and Shinzen Young's book offers a fantastic introduction. Vipassana practice promotes concentration, sensory awareness, and equanimity, all which can help you get more out of your musical studies and enjoy the process.
The Nea 2 massager from Lelo is ideal for releasing and relaxing the muscles governing laryngeal movement and articulation. The vibration intensity is variable, from extremely gentle to quite intense, so it is very good for laryngeal massage and for applying to the throat while vocalizing.
If you're not ready to invest in a Nea 2, the Penguin is a fine affordable alternative. It vibrates at two speeds (both pretty strong) and is excellent for releasing jaw, neck and shoulder tension. It also has the advantage of *not* being marketed as a sex toy.
This is the classic back massager originally manufactured by Hitachi. The Magic Wand is good for releasing bigger muscles in the back, shoulders and abdomen but is not recommended for use on the throat or face.
Jill Miller’s massage balls and self-myofascial release techniques can be used to release tightness in your breathing and vocal anatomy, as well as to learn how to give yourself a deep-tissue massage.