Beware the "method"!

My teacher Cornelius Reid used to warn budding teachers, "There are as many singing methods as there are singers."

He meant, I believe, that 1) people come with a unique blend of problems, skill levels, misconceptions, attitudes, and enrgy levels; and 2) everyone has an individual style of learning. Disregarding this truth is one of the core problems with our system of school education. If you don't believe me, ask yourself and a few friends if your educational needs got met to your satisfaction in high school. Did you feel adequately nurtured, challenged, appreciated for your unique gifts?

Thought so.

That is why I have taken Cornelius at his word and worked hard to derive a custom method for each of my students that addresses their goals, talents, and challenges precisely.

If you know of a teacher who applies a one-size-fits-all approach to teaching her students, pray that the method either miraculously suits the one person for whom it might be the perfect solution. . .or is so far off the mark that students are able to perceive its ineffectiveness when applied to them.

Pity the poor student for whom the method is almost right. That singer might never learn how close he came to great technique without actually reaching it.

I beg you to excuse the dire tone of this posting, which I'm going to attribute to this blasted flu, which has caused me for the first time in my life, ironically, to lose my voice. I just hate to see learners of anything unnecessarily limiting their growth by buying into the Myth of Method.

And that is no April Fool!