Private Singing Lessons
The first option is to hire a singing coach. This is a fairly straightforward concept. You search your local resources, (phone book, directories, music stores colleges etc) to find a singing teacher for hire in your area to teach you how to sing. Just like a sports coach, a vocal coach helps you to understand the fundamentals of the voice and guides you through exercises to build and strengthen your abilities. The immediacy of this option provides several appealing advantages.
Many people choose to learn how to sing with a personal coach because of the face to face aspect it provides. Having an expert in the same room with you allows for an up close and customized approach. A vocal coach will evaluate and get to know your voice, and develop a personalized program suited to your personal style and voice type.
With this option, you have the ability to get immediate feedback on any questions you may have or problems you may be experiencing with the lessons. Because your teacher will get to know your voice, he or she will be able to answer specific questions and give helpful pointers, as well as spot things you may not be aware of and offer an instant correction, so you don’t develop bad habits.
Because learning to sing requires time to train your voice, you can expect homework so you can practice at home and build your voice, work on problem areas and progress before the next lesson. By working with a private singing coach, your homework will be tailored to your voice. Your coach will develop lessons based on your strengths and weaknesses and will be able to monitor your progress with each lesson.
An added benefit to having a coach that you pay for is that it provides accountability. Knowing that you have to meet face to face will help to motivate you to practice. There will always be times when everything sounds more appealing than practicing, but many people find that they stay more motivated under the watchful eye of someone they’re paying to help them. Of course, this can also be seen as a limiting factor as well, so let’s take a look at some of the cons associated with this option.
The biggest obstacle that hiring a private singing coach presents is the price. Of the three options presented here, this is the most expensive. Even if the coach offers a discount for booking blocks of time, you will be paying a recurring bill, should you decide to continue on the past that time frame.
The other fairly significant disadvantage is that you are required to work around another person’s schedule. As open as any coach may be, there are only certain times of the day that you will be able to schedule lessons. This may result in conflicts with school or work or family commitments. Some may work odd hours making their schedule completely incompatible with their local coaches hours of business. Depending on where the lessons are given, you coach may be willing to be flexible, but if the only time you have available is at 3 o’clock in the morning, you are most likely out of luck.
You may also find that you just don’t have many options available in your area. This presents a couple of cons. You may find that you just don’t mesh well with the personality of the only coach in town, or that his or her style is completely different from yours. This creates a scenario in which you either have to endure the discomfort of training with that person or drive a greater distance to a coach you are comfortable with. This then adds to the total cost of the lessons by increasing the amount of gas, or fare you will be paying for.
Finally, it should be mentioned that some people are simply shy and uncomfortable trying new things in front of other people. Fear of public speaking rates higher than the fear of death for most people, so imagine what kind of fear public singing conjures up for some. Especially in the beginning stages of singing, the voice can be very unpredictable, and this can be embarrassing to some.
The reality is, when learning how to sing, you will make mistakes. To some, this is too uncomfortable to do in front of someone. Luckily there are other options available, and we’ll take a look at those next…