Refine Your Vocal Technique

My work with singers is based on time-tested principles of the bel canto tradition as developed by brilliant vocal pedagogue Cornelius Reid. I was lucky enough to study both singing and teaching with Mr. Reid for many years until two weeks before his death in 2008 at the age of 97.

Because every singer is unique in physical make-up, temperament, and experience, I customize the particulars of each lesson to your individual needs. I will listen to your voice and analyze, from moment to moment, what is going right and wrong in your technique. I’ll propose exercises likely to produce immediate improvements in the functioning of your vocal mechanism. In your lessons, we’ll follow what is happening in each moment, as the results of each exercise suggest how we might proceed with vocal experimentation. Every lesson is different and unpredictable—in a word, fun!

Voice Lessons with Michael Hanko
Michael, I don’t know what happened today in my lesson, but I feel incredible. Not only am I able to sing for the first time without pain and strain, even on the high notes, but also I am noticing that physical symptoms I’ve been suffering from for months are starting to recede. My vision is the clearest it’s been in years and my head and jaw suddenly feel light and spacious. Working with you has opened up my whole life in ways I would not have believed before coming to you for lessons. I’m very grateful.

Matt Butler, Rock Singer/Songwriter

You’ll learn to:

  • Coordinate the action of your vocal registers for a healthy, free technique
  • Increase your vocal range & agility
  • Sing throughout your entire range with ease—at any volume
  • Cultivate your unique sound
  • Prevent / alleviate nodes and other vocal maladies

For detailed information about the science and psychology behind my teaching, you may read an article written by Cornelius Reid or learn more about my approach to voice teaching.

What People Are Saying About FBFV Voice Lessons

  • Matt Butler
    Michael, I don’t know what happened today in my lesson, but I feel incredible. Not only am I able to sing for the first time without pain and strain, even on the high notes, but also I am noticing that physical symptoms I’ve been suffering from for months are starting to recede. My vision is the clearest it’s been in years and my head and jaw suddenly feel light and spacious. Working with you has opened up my whole life in ways I would not have believed before coming to you for lessons. I’m very grateful.
    Matt Butler
    Rock Singer/Songwriter
  • David Dodini
    I’ve been to many voice teachers, but only Michael has demonstrated the knowledge of anatomy and how it all works, and the desire to use that knowledge as a teaching tool to help me explore the full expressive potential with my voice. Michael applies his knowledge of and passion for Alexander Technique and proper vocal technique in a way that has led me to much greater vocal discovery than any other voice teacher I’ve studied with. (Working with Michael has also improved my posture and body awareness and thus my overall quality of life.) If you are looking for a teacher, Michael’s unique approach and vast knowledge of the instrument are unique and extremely effective.
    David Dodini
    Rock Singer
  • Josée Vaillancourt
    Michael is the teacher I’d been waiting for my whole life.
    Josée Vaillancourt
    Soprano, Early Music Specialist
  • Huaisi Cen
    Michael offers a holistic approach to developing kinesthetic awareness, which is integrated into a fundamental exploration of movement. My favorite aspect of his voice lessons is that he helps me to develop my individual sound rather than teaching me how to “make” a voice. Through lessons, I have learned to be a better pupil: he gives me guidance which I can recall outside my lessons.
    Huaisi Cen
    Musical Theater Singer
  • Tomoko Kern
    I started to work with Michael as I was suffering from neck injury and vocal tension that kept me from singing or even working in the office. Now that my body is better coordinated, I can breathe much more efficiently, and a lot of my vocal tension has been relieved as well! I still have tons to learn from him, but I have a better understanding of my body, which helps me to sing better. Thank you, Michael!
    Tomoko Kern
    Opera Singer

In his Dictionary of Vocal Terminology, Cornelius Reid has this to say about functional voice training:

A correct technique of singing operates within the framework of natural laws and assists the muscular processes involved to respond in keeping with an innate functional logic. When so encouraged, the faulty tensions which inhibit freedom of movement will release themselves, permitting the vocal muscles to respond more correctly.

All natural functioning is logical, and if one is to sing naturally, contact must be made with the functional logic by which the movement potential of the vocal organs is governed.

Cornelius Reid
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