Maggie Rogers was just a college student when she first met Pharrell Williams at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at NYU. They were asked to prepare a song and bring it to class to be critiqued. She had no…
Being aware of your body and how it affects the way you can use your voice is a skill every performer needs. That’s why Chris Johnson, vocal coach and co-host of the popular podcast “The Naked Vocalist”, emphasizes the use of Feldenkrais, an exercise therapy that improves motor performance through body movement exercises.
By incorporating movement exercises into his voice lessons, Johnson helps his students become more aware of how certain positions affect their breathing and voice. This not only improves their singing but also influences the way their stage scenes are choreographed to optimize their voice and movement.
We chatted with Chris Johnson to learn more about his approach to voice lessons. We also learned more about his own performance career, including a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to sing for then-Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace. Chris even shared his thoughts on how to host a successful podcast and the importance of letting yourself “find your groove.”
In this episode, you’ll discover:
1. How Chris learned movement could be used as a diagnostic tool for singing 02:17
2. The benefits of learning how your body affects your singing 05:53
3. How Chris determines which Feldenkrais exercises are right for certain singers 10:27
4. Why negative feedback can be beneficial for singers 12:31
5. How an awareness of the relationship between body and voice helps choregraph scenes that facilitate singing 16:19
6. When singing is more important than movement — and vice versa 19:09
7. The surprising way Chris got to sing for His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales 20:06
8. The importance of keeping your love of performing alive while teaching 27:30
9. How podcasting newbies can reach their ideal audience 32:05
10. Chris’ favorite podcast guest 34:40
11. The future of “The Naked Vocalist” and Chris’ other projects 35:48
Learn more about the Feldenkrais Method Chris discusses at “Voice, Singing, and Feldenkrais.”
Discover how to assess and address vocal issues through movement by watching Chris’ IVA webinar “Movement as Assessment: Let the body tell you what to do” Use the code “iva-podcast” to receive $5 off any upcoming webinar event.
Find Chris on at his teaching website Chris Johnson Vocal Coach and Teach Voice. You can also follow him on Instagram.
About the Institute for Vocal Advancement
Interested in attending professional development webinars with leading voice experts and becoming a more effective instructor? The Institute for Vocal Advancement grants you access to a thriving global community of teachers who work in every area of the music industry. Learn more by visiting our list of upcoming events and Teacher Training Programs.
Use the code “iva-podcast” to receive $5 off any upcoming webinar event.
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