As part of Health and Wellness week, we interviewed Marisa De Silva about the Alexander Technique and how it can support your students' vocals and overall wellness.…
Our latest teacher story comes from Alexandra Pengler, an IVA Certified Teacher in Sweden:
Growing up in a small town in the South of Germany I discovered my passion and talent for singing at an early age and entertained my family and friends anywhere I could - the back of the car, on a school bus, classroom or stairway (for the nice acoustics).
I started to write my own songs and sing in several cover bands when eventually my band members suggested I should focus on my potential and take vocal lessons from a renowned teacher for Functional Voice Training. This meant my father had to drive me 40 miles to the nearest town, sitting in the car and waiting for me to finish in the freezing cold! Back then there was no such thing as online vocal training. People kept asking me: “How do you do this with your voice? You have such a big voice even though you are tiny!” I decided to find answers. I applied in Germany for the first position to study Rock/Pop/Jazz Vocals and after a successful audition I was accepted. Since then, I have been aiming to learn from the best vocal coaches and teachers in Germany and all over the world.
Almost 20 years ago I was educated and coached by one of my biggest influencers, Udo Dahmen, the founder of the Popakademie in Mannheim, one of the best musical institutions in Germany, who advised me to move to Hamburg. I participated in the Popkurs 2000 with my band Dew (now Wir Sind Helden), and met my long-term vocal coach, Karin Ploog, who introduced me to the world of vocal technique. With performing three nights a week at famous venues like Angie’s Nightclub, together with great singers like Roger Cicero at the Reeperbahn in Hamburg, teaching during the day at Hamburg School of Music and Your Music School - and working at the Phantom of the Opera - my voice needed to stay in good shape. Thanks to my regular voice training and growing knowledge about the voice I managed to master this challenge.
I was lucky to work with the best singers and musicians the German music scene had to offer but my heart told me to move to the west of Ireland where I was performing with some of the finest Irish bands and musicians like: The Frames, Bell X1 and Sharon Shannon. One of the highlights of my time in the “Wild West” was winning the WestStar Competition 2005 for the best voice west of Ireland.
During my time on the “Emerald Island” I was teaching over 200 students a week, preparing them for shows in Disneyland Florida, Paris and London West End. When I met Andres Martorell in Galway City, another big milestone in my career as a vocal coach was thrown. Andres introduced me to Speech Level Singing (SLS) and then later to the Institute for Vocal Advancement (IVA). IVA helped me develop my technique through extensive study of the dynamics of the human voice.
My teaching is now based on logic since it is according to physiological, acoustic and aerodynamic laws. I am able to give my students targeted tools which allow their voice to find immediate balance. Whilst being trained by Andres Martorell, Jeffrey Skouson, Guy Babusek, Heather Baker, Spencer Welch, Kathy Kennedy, Linda Tomkinson, Stephanie Borm-Krüger, Rachel Black and Chrissy Cooley Rogers, I am also coaching students all over the world via Skype, as well as my studio in Malmö / Sweden.
My clients are based in Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Australia, Canada and the United States, and as I am passionate about traveling I can also offer classes in person or workshops whenever possible. Here in Scandinavia I also coach office employees who have a high demand on their voice and their performance in general. I love working in recording studios to help my clients to reach their highest vocal potential, as well as my own work as a vocalist for trailer music together with my producers from Proofsound Music Productions.
More Recent Articles
In this blog series, we are meeting IVA teachers from around the world. We continue with Erika from Mexico…
Self-employed vocal instructors have to work to make money. If we don’t work, we don’t get to simply “call in sick” and still get paid while we stay in bed with a bowl of chicken noodle soup.…