Your voice is unique. Your face is just as unique. They are a perfect pair. Why not take advantage of this duo? What better opportunity to allow your voice and face to reflect each other.
In the performance of a song, the text is of utmost importance. If the words are not understandable then what is the purpose of the text existing? Yes, good diction will aid in getting the meaning of the song across.
What will put your performance over the top?
Although many students will grunt at the idea of practicing facial expressions, we all agree that it can make or break a performance. Personally, I show my life and everything I feel, on my face, on a daily basis. I would be an awful spy and a worse poker player, but as a performer it makes my life much easier.
The difficulty in performing is showing expression that feels and looks natural. You want to be moved by the music, ‘to feel the music;’ you do not want to seem fake or stiff. For those students who have difficulty seeming natural on stage or showing any emotion at all, a performance may seem extremely intimidating.
How do you prepare? Just as you practice breathing technique and work on a consistent tone quality, you can practice facial expressions and creating emotion in your voice.
Fish pops, dog snarls, mama made me mash my m&ms are all powerful warm up tools in my studio. The kids love them and the adults think they’re quirky and get a kick out of them. Everyone smiles when they sing them. A smile is the most basic of facial expressions and one of the most natural. To branch out, add new emotions in and make faces at yourself in the mirror. Tell stories to children. Mimic the expressions and emotions in your favorite cartoons and movies. You can even be melodramatic while singing one of your favorite songs and rock out!
Eventually, you can step onto the stage and let yourself go! Instead of fighting your nerves, use them to get out of your shell. It helps to allow yourself to be silly and to be okay with it. Didn’t your parents ever tell you your face could get stuck that way? They failed to let you know that it would make you a better singer.
Sharing emotion through your voice can work similarly. Overdo it. Break out of your shell. More than anything, you need to understand the meaning of the text and understand those particular emotions. Portraying those emotions can be done through acting or reliving the actual emotions. Do not be afraid to act. Yes, you want to seem natural but not at the expense of causing your voice to crack because you actually start crying or laughing.
If you learn to feel the emotions of your song then your voice and face will more readily react to the emotions. You need to prepare until that moment when techniques allow things to slip into place and everything is aligned.
In case you thought you were off the hook because you are a natural expressionista, don’t forget that no one is perfect and practice makes better.