Interval Guide for Voice lessons

Singers are often viewed as being not very good musicians.  There are many reasons for this but primarily it comes down to the fact that most
singers are never taught to read music during their voice lessons.  All other instrumentalists are taught how to read music as soon as they start studying an instrument and their teachers often offer instruction in music theory through the course of their study.  Unfortunately do to the nature of singing and the low quality of teachers available this has never been remedied for singers.  I highly recommend that during voice lessons, teachers prioritize musicianship with their singers especially those intending to pursue music in college or as a career.   Music theory and other courses can be extremely difficult in college and singers who are behind all the other musicians often find themselves dropping out of classes or eventually changing their major.  This can easily be fixed by teachers who set aside time at each less to teach music theory.  Reading music is a skill that voice students will use their whole lives.

Aural skills and sight-singing are one of the most important skills a singer can have.  Many career paths available to singers today require sight-singing to be at a very high level.  professional singers should be able to grab a piece of music they have never seen before and sing it after being given only the staring key and first note.  For this reason I believe voice teachers should start teaching sight reading and interval identification from their first lesson with a new voice student.  Intervals are the basis of sight-singing.  Here is a simple song interval guide that I have found to be very successful with my students.  I am often amazed at how quickly even the youngest student can learn to sing and identify all the intervals.



Ascending                                                          Descending

m2   Jaws                                                              m2   Joy to the World

M2 Happy Birthday                                         M2 The First Noel

m3   O Canada                                                    m3   Jesus Loves Me

M3  Triad/ O When the Saints                     M3  Good Night Ladies

P4   Hark the Herald Angels                         P4   Oh Come, All yeFaithful

TT   Maria                                                          TT   Blue Seven

voice lessons

P5    Star Wars                                                   P5    The Way you look tonight

m6   Go Down Moses                                    m6   Please don’t talk about  me when I’m Gone

M6 My Bonnie                                                 M6  Music of the Night

m7   There’s a Place for us                          m7   An American in Paris

M7  Bali Hai                                                       M7 I love you

8ve  Somewhere over the                          8ve  There’s no Business like Show Business



For more songs you can easily do an internet search and pick the songs that are easiest for you to quickly hear in your head.  For more help I highly recommend the earmasterpro program which can be used to drill interval recognition as well as rhythmic notation and other skills.  I also recommend the book Tune Your Voice by Darlene Koldenhoven.  The book contains seven CD’s that can be used easily in the car for more interval and ear training development.


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