top of page
Australian Voice
2023, Volume 24
Exploring the Use of Imagery to Synthesise Voice Science and Vocal Artistry When Training Singers in the Youth Choir Context

AUTHOR: Jenna Brown


ABSTRACT: This qualitative practitioner research project seeks to broaden the debate between voice science and artistry by investigating choral conductors’ pedagogical needs. In particular, it explores the application of imagery in the vocal training and development of young singers. As the science versus imagery debate continues in the pedagogical community, the interrelationship between physiological accuracy, artistic expression and vocal health is becoming ever more imperative. Despite advances in vocal health research, relatively few studies investigate the impact of imagery use in choir training compared to other areas of voice pedagogy, and fewer still extrapolate findings to consider conductors’ professional development. This study seeks to bridge that gap. Six conducting staff members at a British youth choir participated in observations, interviews and a questionnaire aimed at identifying, analysing and evaluating their use of imagery in rehearsals. Investigation of imagery type, function and application during the training of youth choir singers begins to indicate the efficacy of various strategies in synthesising the two competing strands of science and artistry. Where imagery does not adequately unite the technical and artistic, three core themes have been identified as underlying the deficit. Findings suggest that additional training, development of physiologically accurate personalised imagery, and nuanced understanding of professional roles are all vital for ensuring the vocal health of youth choir singers.


KEYWORDS: choral, gesture, metaphor, pedagogy, singing


To cite this article:

Brown, J. (2023). Exploring the use of imagery to synthesise voice science and vocal artistry when training singers in the youth choir context. Australian Voice, 24, 42-56.

bottom of page