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School of Music: Vocal Studies Department
Vocal Pedagogy @ ECU


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About the Program
Pedagogy is the method and practice of teaching, especially as an academic subject or theoretical concept. The purpose of the vocal pedagogy concentration program at East Carolina is to provide an alternative for the vocal performer who would like to have a deeper understanding of classical singing. The program would allow the vocal performer to develop a practical teaching skill that would enhance his or her marketability.

Dr. Perry Smith, operatic tenor and professor, coordinates the master of music in performance with a concentration in vocal pedagogy program.

A diagnostic vocal pedagogy exam will be required for placement into the program. This will be administered on your audition day. Preparation for this exam can be attained by reading the book Functional Unity of the Singing Voice, by Barbara Doscher.

Program Objectives
The mission of the master’s degree in performance with a concentration in vocal pedagogy at East Carolina is twofold: to disseminate information for the enhancement of voice pedagogy at large and to examine, via scientific analyses, subjective pedagogic concepts. The program doesn't seek new techniques for the teaching of singing; rather, it examines the ways in which conflicting ideas of voice pedagogy relate to efficiency and functional freedom in the production of sung sound. Through immediate real-time audio/visual feedback, a singer may observe on video monitors such vocal events as onset and release, vowel definition, vowel modification, agility, registration, intensity, nasality, degrees of legato, phrase shaping, and vibrato rates. Most importantly, the singer is alerted to the spectral relationships among overtones and formants that characterize the professional singing voice. Videos of lessons and performances can be readily analyzed. Analyses of videotapes and performance films by great artists provide further powerful study tools.

Contact Information
For audition and other information, contact
Dr. Perry Smith
e-mail: smithpe@ecu.edu
phone: 252-328-6247