You’ll probably recognize the student in this video; she’s one of the truly great entertainers.  (And watch to the end for a hilarious impression of her by her young godson–priceless!)

What I admire: The teacher creates a welcoming atmosphere for the student and fosters a sense of joy in singing.  She is not intimidated by her student’s eminence.

What I might have done differently: If one of my students arrived at her lesson in an obvious state of over-stimulation, I would suggest a few minutes of Voice-Enhancing Bodywork to bring her energy to a level at which productive work is more likely.  During the lesson, I would strive to emulate the kind of ease in my own body which I want to bring about for my student.  When my students sing, I refrain from singing loudly along with them so that I can more effectively listen to what is going on with their vocal coordination.

Bottom line:  I wouldn’t pay for the vocal pedagogy on display here.  But I suppose Liza can easily afford her fees.  And maybe this teacher’s approach helps Liza to cultivate the breathless yet brassy, over-the-top, quasi-hysterical persona so beloved by her fans. . .but at what cost to her equilibrium?   (Did I just use “Liza” and “equilibrium” in the same sentence?)


  1. Peter says:


  2. Barbara says:

    This is really wild!

  3. Ken Tankerous says:

    Oh, get real, Hanko. What are you, some kind of Non-Violent Communication fruitcake? Just say it like it is:

    These two women aren't singing so much as stirring each other up into a mutual estrogen frenzy. And what's with those frantic gesticulations the teacher is making? I guess she is trying to convey to poor Liza the shape of the musical phrase they are screaming, but Liza seems to think that she is indicating the trajectory of her chin. If they had screamed up a few more semitones, she'd have dislocated her whole head. And then when they drag the poor gay child in for the "hard one," the teacher just about puts her back out conducting it. I thought from this blog that singing was supposed to be easeful, but obviously, the rules are different for superstars and their coteries.

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