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When Should A Child Start Singing Lessons?


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#1 kate bush fan

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 16:51

What is a good age for a child to start singing lessons? My little girl is seven and I am thinking of finding a singing teacher for her - she loves singing and seems to have quite a powerful voice. Would I be in danger of putting her off/damaging her voice?
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#2 Guest: petrat_*

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 18:06

Seven is a little young for formal singing lessons but if she is a mature young lady of seven and you can find the right teacher she could begin lessons at her age. The thing to do with youngsters is to teach them songs and some theory and the beginnings of sight singing but in a fun way. It is easy to over-train voices and to make the lessons so dull that the child will hate them. A singing group or a young music makers group might be a better idea at the moment.
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#3 AnnC

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 23:19

I agree with what's been said. I don't like to take them under 10/11, though I've helped a few 8/9 year-olds out with their song and dance items for dance festivals. Even then, it depends on the child. Unlike some musical instruments, it's not necessary or wise to start lessons at such a young age. Young voices are very delicate, and need handling with kid gloves. If you decide to take it further, do make sure the teacher knows what they are doing. Find someone to recommend a good one.
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#4 char

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 07:58

How about a local choir or singing group??? I am 16 now and started in a local choir for young people when I was about the age of your daughter and enjoyed it immensely and my involvement encouraged me to start singing lessons a bit later on at about 11/12. It was a good way of learning some new skills reading music, performing in public etc
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#5 Keith the 'wannabe organist'

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 18:16

I agree with Char, I joined my choir when i was 7 where they can introduce you to singing, teach you theory and discipline in singing. Maybe start lessons at a slightly older age, around 10, but at the age of 7 she may find a choir fun.
Keet
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#6 Tess

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 21:39

RAM professor, Diane Forlano said something like this - At least 14 as taking singing lessons before puberty has done its proper job to enlarge the body which is the singing frame, will endanger the voice but by all means join a choir early if you like but without any proper classical singing lessons. Our now 10-yr old girl has nagged us but we remain steadfast.
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#7 thouston

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 12:21

My teacher has always said she wouldn't normally consider taking on singing pupils below the age of 14. I know in exceptional cases she would (as she put it) "teach songs" to younger children if they were exceptionally keen and mature (as she also teaches piano and recorder, she gets a lot of requests from young pupils), but she wouldn't consider teaching technique in these cases.
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#8 kate bush fan

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 12:25

ok you have all persuaded me lessons are not a good idea yet.. - will look into a choir but I actually don't know of any for children in my area - it is a shame that schools don't seem to have choirs anymore, well her school does hardly anything musical. I was thinking of trying to encourage the singing now though before she gets older and more self-conscious - by the time I was ten I had become very shy about singing infront of other people.
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#9 Tess

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 13:11

QUOTE(kate bush fan @ Jan 11 2007, 12:25 PM) View Post

ok you have all persuaded me lessons are not a good idea yet.. - will look into a choir but I actually don't know of any for children in my area - it is a shame that schools don't seem to have choirs anymore, well her school does hardly anything musical. I was thinking of trying to encourage the singing now though before she gets older and more self-conscious - by the time I was ten I had become very shy about singing infront of other people.


This is a very good idea. Joining a choir as a child changed my life. smile.gif How abt the county's or borough's junior choir? Call the borough/county Music Service/Trust. Ask the head for the tel no. They usually have a choir for kids from age 9 and if you attend church, there must be choirs there and also plenty of lively fun singing in Sunday School. Many private schools have choirs for very young kids as early as seven. Check this out if she is in one. Try also searching for "Kodaly" sessions on Google.

Best wishes. smile.gif

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#10 Guest: Malone_*

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 15:00

One of my good freinds is a singing teacher and he teaches all ages but doesn't start on technical work til they are at least 13/14, until then its really just very informal singing lessons with songs from Annie and Oliver mainly along with well known Classical lullabys...
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#11 AnnC

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 22:37

QUOTE(Tess @ Jan 10 2007, 09:39 PM) View Post

RAM professor, Diane Forlano said something like this - At least 14 as taking singing lessons before puberty has done its proper job to enlarge the body which is the singing frame, will endanger the voice but by all means join a choir early if you like but without any proper classical singing lessons. Our now 10-yr old girl has nagged us but we remain steadfast.


I think it's wise to play safe. However, lessons before 14 will only harm the voice if the teacher doesn't know what they are doing. There are many things which can be done in a singing lesson without damaging the voice. That's why there are classes for children from 8 years in competition festivals, which are adjudicated by some of the finest singers and teachers in the country. And also songs on the ABRSM grade list suitable for children of that age (not to mention the prep test songs).
Also the voice is constantly changing until age 25, so it can be as harmful to start lessons at 16 as 8 if the teacher is not capable.
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#12 Cyrilla

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 00:25

I know someone who passed Grade 8 singing with merit when she was only 12...
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#13 violincjj

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 07:42

QUOTE(Cyrilla @ Jan 12 2007, 12:25 AM) View Post

I know someone who passed Grade 8 singing with merit when she was only 12...



Yes but........that will have been with a very different voice to the one she will have say, 5 years later won't it?

Sure it's worth doing Gd 8 for its own sake but in terms of lifelong vocal learning it's fairly meaningless isn't it?


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#14 meerkat

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 16:55

My singing teacher has said she'd be ok with taking a young child to teach them enjoyment of singing and good basic habits. I think this is different from teaching singing technique, and I don't see any harm in it. Choirs can sometimes be a good thing but sometimes not (I was taught some very bad habits in choirs as a kid). Depends on the choir I think!
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#15 Clari Nicki1

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 18:14

What age for a boy? After voice break? Just Wondering.....
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