Lilli Lehmann’s book ‘How to Sing’ describes the sensations of ‘whirling currents’. She writes “[a] mistaken idea of ‘singing it forward’ misleads most to press it forward and thus allow it to be speedily dissipated”. Here is a demo of one of the many ways to train yourself to find and maintain these whirling currents without pressing.
Here, I am using a Māori word for skirt ‘piupiu’ because the ‘p’ trains me to purse my lips, the ‘i’ gives the brilliance and the ‘u’ the depth. I am aiming to sing almost sharp because I have a tendency to scoop and pull the voice down.
My guitar is tuned to 432HZ.
Last year, I listened to Patti’s version of ‘The Last Rose of Summer’ by Moore and fell in love with her sound. I battled away at the song for a while but couldn’t achieve the lightness of sound I wanted. Pressing and singing too heavily is death to bel canto and, as well as that, I was not supporting my voice enough. However, today I sang a lot of Donizetti and Bellini because my strategy is to sing a lot of coloratura for the next year before I return to lyric repertoire. I had worked all day to lighten the voice because I need a lighter voice to make it through the arias. At the end of the day, I thought of Patti’s singing. I just had to give ‘The Last Rose of Summer’ a go and, lo and behold, the whirling currents were there!