Magic Choral Trick #131 Training Wheels and Muscle Memory
I remember always having to keep my lips in a sort of tall narrow rectangle shape when I was first studying the Bel Canto technique. It felt exaggerated – but it did allow my voice to become much more focused. (Well – that shape and a number of other things that have now become habit)
I can now sing with my mouth in just about any shape and create a focused sound.
My kids used training wheels on their bikes until I was sure that they’d be able to balance without them. Thinking about balance gave way to trying to go faster or do very cool stopping tricks.
Young people here have to spend a year or so driving around with a licensed driver beside them until they’re allowed to even try their road test.
So – my dear students and chorus members – yes, you really, really, really do need to do your practising using Moustache Hands – or any of the other Magic Tricks that work well for you, no matter how tiresome or unsightly. And keep using these techniques until they’re no longer necessary.
Please be assured that muscle memory will eventually kick in – in exactly the same way that you no longer have to think about how to move your hands when you brush your teeth, or put on the kettle or drive your car. You’ll be able to graduate to the next new embarrassing thing that I get told about, or that I think up.