Profile, research details & links

Samuel Oram


Vocal Pedagogy and Conservatoire Culture: reviewing the importance of the modern singing teacher within conservatoire vocal students’ professional development

The vocal instrument and student are combined physiologically, musically, and emotionally. Vocal pedagogy considers healthy phonation, linguistic prowess, and informed performance practice to be of paramount importance, generally neglecting an understanding of current educational research and students’ individual needs. In short, modern vocal pedagogy fails to recognise students as holistic entities who are affected by the communities around them. Extrinsic systems, forming context and narrative for pedagogic interactions, such as gender, race, socio-economic status, and education exist throughout a student’s lifetime and directly affect a student’s sense of identity, belonging and competence, then intrinsically shaping and informing their sense of efficacy, motivation, and achievement. Given the high importance placed upon the one-to-one music lesson within a Conservatoire environment, a focus on developing emotional or sociocultural support systems within one-to-one singing lessons at Higher Education could have direct influence on individual students’ liminal transitions and then on early-career achievement. But how can these aspects of a student’s life be fostered within the one-to-one musical teaching environment?

This project is investigating the teaching and learning of vocal pedagogy from within the one-to-one Conservatoire environment. It involves an ethnographic examination through observations and interviews exploring: the definition of vocal pedagogy within the context of a Conservatoire education; the different ways singing teachers conceptualise and communicate vocal pedagogy; the wider impact of the culture surrounding a Conservatoire education; and, the effect these approaches have on the transition of the music student to the professional musician.





Pin It on Pinterest