Thursday, October 4, 2012

How do a positive self-image and being physically and mentally fit impact singing?

As part of any personal journey, you must be comfortable in your own skin and have a positive self-image and healthy outlook on life.  Singing as an avocation is fun.  It can be challenging, but ultimately the goal is to have fun and share your talent and communicate with others.  Singing as a vocation can add another element of dedication and commitment.  It is tough either way to compete with all of the other singers out there.  How do you make yourself the best you can be as a singer and have good self-esteem to carry you through?  Part 1 of 5.

“I must be emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and physically fit to have a singing career,” is the summary of Does Size Matter ?, Classical Singer Magazine, October 2011.  In this polling of a variety of singers, most feel that their perception of their body image influenced the way they sang and how they communicated on stage. How you feel about yourself and how your body reacts to that feeling is extremely valuable to the performing capabilities of a singer.

A singer must have a positive self-image in order to sing and perform at their best capabilities. You have to feel good about yourself no matter what you look like.   The competition is tough and you are sharing a part of you when you sing.  If you are well-balanced emotionally, physically, and mentally you have a higher chance of success.   If you are just learning how to sing, have patience with yourself and try to better yourself as a whole in any way you can.

People with a negative body image cannot get over how poorly they feel about themselves, and therefore cannot truly present themselves to an audience.  Isabella Ivy, soprano

If you make healthy lifestyle changes through being physically active and altering eating habits, you start on a path to being more physically AND emotionally well-balanced.  Feeling good about your outside and inside make you emotionally strong.

The more in tune I am with my body physically, the more connected I am to my instrument and singing comes from an inner strength and confidence.  Christina Foster, soprano.  No truer words could be spoken.  If you are in tune with your body physically, your mind is in a more positive place and confidence follows.  Yoga is a great way to get in tune with both body and mind quickly.

My body is my voice, and they are both unique, Michelle Brook Alexander, soprano.  Your voice is unique to you and you are unique.  Your voice and your body have a place.  Your voice may fit a role and the music, but this unfortunately can only be overlooked to a certain degree.  “Look the part” has been a part of performing forever (both acting and singing).  If you do not look the part, you may need to vary the style of your singing (oratorio versus opera versus musical theater) to maximize your success. 

Practice a “lifestyle diet” in which you are passionate about health, fitness, wellness, and singing.  The more time you spend on you as a whole, the greater a singer you can become.  What can you do in your everyday life to improve your physical, emotional, and mental state to maximize your performance potential? 

For more information on singer’s thoughts on the importance of appearance, body image, and singing visit and June and July 2011.

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