Magic Choral Trick #337 How Much Diphthong Resolution Vowel is Enough?
I’ve done some experimenting with this one recently and have come to the conclusion that unless singers are thinking the resolution vowel very intensely, it’s almost impossible to hear it from the group as a whole.
The trick is to make it as short as possible, but really audible, without accenting it in a percussive sort of way.
This smooth but fast increase in intensity takes drilling – preferably during the warm up – with words like:
Light – lah……EAT
Know – no..…..OO
Same – seh…..EEM
Then try combining words that contain diphthongs:
Same day – Seh…EEMdeh….EE
Bright light – Bra….EATlah…..EAT
I have found that in order to get my singers to understand just how much mental focus the resolution vowel needs, I often need to ask them to give two or three times the amount of thought and intensity as they do to the target vowel.
If I ask for louder, many of the chorus will think that I mean accented, and not smooth – which is why I usually ask for double or triple the intensity.