How to Sing Opera
Opera music is quite different from other styles of singing; so learning how to sing opera takes some special lessons and steps. Here are some that can help you:
- Study the Subject: to get familiar with the subject of how to sing opera, go see some operas or at least listen to it on tape or CD. Learn about any opera singers that you want to emulate, and listen to how they perform. It’s also a fact that most operas are sung in a different language – specifically – Italian. So, learning that language can help you in learning how to sing opera. To truly sing opera well, you must have passion; if you don’t know what you’re saying, how can you be passionate about it? Also, you have to know how to give the words the right inflection and nuance. Other popular opera languages include French and German.
- Firm Up: learning how to sing opera means having a strong voice; even with a microphone, you need to be able to enunciate and project your voice well. As the saying goes, they’ve got to be able to hear you in the back rows. So, you need a strong diaphragm, powerful lungs, and good neck muscles and larynx if you want to know how to sing opera. This means exercising all of them and having good posture. To be sure you’re breathing properly, stand up straight, put both hands on your belly, and take a deep breath. As you do so, you should feel your abdomen swell, not your chest rise. By practicing every day, you can build up the strength of your voice, and always be sure to start out small – sing a standard scale first, and then build up. After all, your voice is much like a muscle – you want to train it, not strain it.
- More than Singing: with some types/styles of singing, it’s all about the singing, but with how to sing opera it is a bit different. In nearly all cases, it means being on stage. So, you have to learn about having a “stage presence”, how to be dramatic and how to act. After all, you’re going to be telling a story through singing and your actions; you have to be able to act, to move in an overly exaggerated manner. This also means learning stage and theater terms, leaning how to “cheat” and countless other types of acting terminology.
- The Right Teacher: if you can afford it, find yourself a good vocal teacher to give you lessons in how to sing opera. You need to learn what your vocal range is, what sorts of roles you are best suited to sing; these are things that a vocal coach can help you to figure out, and guide you in improving your voice and vocal range. This leads to the next point in learning how to sing opera :
- Find Your Range and Style: for men, there are three types of opera singers – a deep voice is a bass, a middle range is a baritone, and high voices are tenors. For women, there are only two, altos and sopranos. As for style, if your voice is very clear and crisp – you should learn to play comedic opera roles; if you’ve got a rougher, gruffer voice – dramatic parts are what you’re best suited for.
- Start Small: also, when first starting out with how to sing opera, try singing in the chorus of a local or community opera company. This way, you get the opportunity to sing, yet you don’t have to be perfect; you can gradually build up your resume and voice.
Opera is a unique form of singing, so take a few simple steps into how to sing opera, and what type of opera singing you’re best suited to do.