Lore Fischer.PDF

- Lore lisciier ULLETIN INTERVIEWS... Lore Fischer TNB: Frau Fischer, iou have had an enviable career both as singer and teacher. I-ro,n tour vast storehouse of performance experiences iou must have a large reservoir of know/edge to impart to the mature student. Yet, not aiwa is, even with the mature student, have all vocal problems been resolved. Do iOU then return once again to the basics of technique with such a singer? How does the wise teacher proceed in such cases? LF: Afte
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    Lore lisciier ULLETIN INTERVIEWS Lore ischer TNB: Frau Fischer, iou have had an enviable career both as singer and teacher. I-ro,n tour vast storehouse of performance experiences iou must have a large reservoir of know/edge to impart to the mature student. Yet, not aiwa is, even with the mature student, have all vocal problems been resolved. Do iOU then return once again to the basics of technique with such a singer? How does the wise teacher proceed in such cases? LF: After I have made a thorough examination of a voice new to me, including range extension and the varying kinds of literature - literature which includes intensive consideration of legato line in singing, the coloratura factor, the rapid change of forte and piano, as well as the demonstration of a command of the events of consonant and vowel - I acquire an approximate picture of the possible vocal problems that the young artist is encoun- tering Next, I question the singer as to the degree to which he or she is aware of the shortcomings my ear identifies, and then I try to point out the best way to overcome those shortcomings TNB: When a toung singer comes to you with a fine instrument, but with little vocal technique and with a limited performance background, where ,night ou most probabl   begin with technical work? LF: Whatever the case, I begin by establishing the basics of a dependable vocal technique. First of all, this consists of consciously establishing a proper working of correct breathing, with resultant efficient breath support. Essential to this technique is a clear understanding of what is meant by complete relaxation and expansion. Then, from the proper understanding of these functions may grow the feeling for one s individual perception of resonance capacity; such individual concept is essential for the beauty of the voice and for effortless mastery. If the young singer has little or no performance experience, and consequently lacks a positive feeling for vocal style, I would introduce him or her to easy and practical examples from differing periods of the vocal repertoire. Moreover, a young singer should make use of every opportunity to hear examples of good performance in concert and opera, further educating him or her through the rich treasury of recorded performances from authoritative interpreters available to us today. TNB: As ou so well know, there exist a number of viewpoints regarding the best wat to manage breath for singing (breath support). Please allow me to ask several rather specific questions regarding the process of breathing fr singing: 1) in what position should the chest be found immediate/i prior to inhalation. 2) exact/) where in the torso is expansion flt in inhalation, 3) how long should that initial position he maintained, and 4) what is the position of the rib cage at the beginning of inhalation and at the close of a relative/i long phrase? IF: I assume that by chest and by rib ( age you mean one and the same thing. I will base my answers to your questions on this supposition. 1 answer in four parts: I) With inhalation - which should be practiced by slow breathing exercises - approximately three-to-four seconds should be involved, during which the breath is taken slowl y  through partly-closed lips with the ribs and sternum raised; accordingly. the diaphragm descends, and simultaneously the intercostal muscles stretch outward; thereby the chest cavity is considerably enlarged. Consequently, the diaphragm must extend itself, together with the increased expansion of the rib cage, against the stomach wall. This is the position it achieves immediately following the act of inhalation. 2) Expansion resulting from this inhalation will he felt throughout the entire torso. At the same time, particular attention must be taken to ensure that the breath be kept low and that it not be pushed into the upper areas of the lung 3) After the singer has become sensually aware of this position, and has trained the intercostal muscles stretched long and wide) to stay in this position, he or she may remain in this near-inspiratory position for a very long time. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that the student not initially inhale too much breath, in which case the breathing muscles will be tense, and exhalation may then not proceed either slowly or evenly. 4) Ideally, the position of the rib cage experienced at the moment of inhalation should be maintained through- out the long phrase. A natural, relaxed (but upright) posture gives the student the correct feeling for breath apportionment, in a relatively brief period of time. TNB: Do males and femnales breathe in the same manner for singing? LF: The basic principles of the singer s breath, as already discussed in the preceding questions, are identical for male and female. Nevertheless, low breathing in a man may be developed more in the direction of the abdominal cavity, whereas the female anatom y  requires more emphasis on the intercostal and sternal regions. In any case, one often sees less dangerously high breathing in men than in women. TNB: How do y ou assist the student in acquiring agility in singing? Are there specific vocalises that ou use? Could You indicate some of them for us? 10   N FEB 982  LF: With every voice which presents itself to me I deal with exercises for both relaxation and muscular activity. Above all, the elasticity of the diaphragm is required for agility. For the development of the essential flexibility of the diaphragm. I require that the student inhale properly, that he or she hold the breath, and then exhale with a slight outward push on the repeated sound [php]. It is very important that one train the abdominal- diaphragmatic muscles to move outward during this vocalise. After the action of this movement is correctly established. I give the student rapid descending mordent exercises (Figure I), with the first tone articulated by a light impulse from an elastic, supple diaphragm. This action is followed by a double-mordent (Figure 2), and then by short, rapid triplet exercises on da or whereby the pronunciation of the consonant, with the tip of the tongue exactly located behind and in contact with the top teeth, is exactly coordinated with a light flexible out wardpush of the diaphragmatic wall (Figures 3 and 4). -   II F? r   J 77g j ; pr_l Jd.yJy:III l Another group of ascending exercises then follows. executed within the range of only a 5th, in small sequences of 4, then 5, and finally, 6 and 7 notes (Figures 5. 6, 7 and 8). All of these exercises must be done very rhythmically and alwa y s in connection with a feeling of relaxation in the areas of head and shoulders and with flexible strength in the breathing apparatus.   - ( Music copied b   William D. Lever/c) TNB / have heard recordings 0/jour OWfl singing, and I am aliiars struck hr i our marvelous legato line and hr the constan tlr vibrant tone displa red, two aspects of singing whichI must confess I do not alwa   s hear from some of our German colleagues. Two questions follow from this observation: I) do ou agree that legato and vibrant tone as musical and vocal ideals are often lacking among a number o German-trained singers? and 2) how do ou go about teaching the student to sing a vibrant, legato line? IT: Perhaps the fact that even as a child I knew instinctively that I would become a singer could help explain what you so kindly say about my own singing. Very early I began to play the violin, and I searched there for the tonal ideal of compactness and richness (I)ichiig- keit des Manges), legato. and natural vitality (natürli- chen Lehen), vibrato, that I believe quite naturally carried over into my own singing With regard to your two questions. I must reply that unfortunately it is often the case in the training of German singers that too little attention is paid to the natural Ideal Tone (Idealk/ang), the natural quality of each singing voice. Therefore, my work is often concerned to a large extent with detecting stiffness and tightness in the singing muscles, and disclosing the manifold and most delicate interpla y  of those two important poles in singing: proper tensions, and relaxations. While making the student conscious of the necessity of this dynamic interplay of tension and relaxation. I work together with him or her to bring to life the singer's individual Ideal Tone. As a purely technical device for achieving this balance, I have m y  students sing low scales in a concentrated, vibrant legato, followed by slow triads in the same way (I may also suggest a Lied by Schubert ), and finally, very slow octaves in ascending chromatic patterns. TNB In relation to the previous question, when one sings Bach or other late Baroque vocal literatures, should one re/i heavil   on straight tone as some people current/i believe? In jour viewpoint is this vocal/i a sound device and is it st   listi ll   correct:) l.l : It is correct that with Bach and other composers of the late Baroque Period, one can make use of a calmer, more instrumentally-conceived vocal color, but by no means can a dead vocal color do justice to this glorious music. I would never build a voice upon this vocal coloration - upon an absolutely straight tone and. indeed. I hold such a practice to be stylistically incorrect as well. Of course, we all know that in Bach's time, the solo vocal parts were sung by bo y s voices. But does not a boy s voice also have a natural life and vitality of its own'? I. myself, have sung an infinite amount of Bach. I was for many years a major soloist at the most important performances in the J homaskirche, Leipzig, and at all the great Bach Festivals, but it never occurred to me to consciousl y  alter m y  vocal sound while singing Bach Naturally, extremely big, unfocussed voices, and bombastic operatic tones, are inappropriate to the realization of either the clear, instrumental lines of Bach's music or to the absolute equality of each of his ingenious parts, be that part given over to the human voice, the oboe, the flute, the violin, the cello, or whatever. Ifwc are successful in educating the young singer to listen to the totality of the musical texture, so that the singer understands that his or her own vocal instrument is but Continued) IAN l   FH 1992  one part be it subsidiary or prominent - of this wonderful musical whole, the singer will gradually find the correct approach to an authentic Bach style for the voice. TNB: You have taught a number of American singers both in Europe and during tour American master class tours. Are there ant specific A ?nerican problems that You discern in those voices, related either to language or culture? IF: Yes, there are some problems for the American singer, above all in the treatment of the consonants of the German language, and in the essential differentiation of vowel definition and color. These factors are naturally difficult for a non-native singer of the German language. First, 1 would like to comment about those carriers of expression (Ausdruckstrager) of the German language the consonants. German consonants in singing must be worked on diligently to attain their exact individual character. The voiced consonants [1] [m] [n] [s] [z] [v] and such unvoiced phonetic sounds as [st] and [s] illustrate the inner content of a single word or a musical line in German. as for example with such words as Stille, schon, se/mend. wU/mend, ladielnd, Sc/ilaf sinki. he plosive sounds [h] and [p] must be made by an intensive pressing of the lips; [d] and [t] by an intensive pressing of the tip of the tongue behind the upper teeth 0 Tod; Don in den Weiden). In [g] and [k] the tongue articulates against the hard palate at the same time lifting itself away from the epiglottis, making possible a free and open sound on the vowel which follows (Mein Gott; Komm, o komnie bald). Let us touch on the second major linguistic problem in German for the American singer: German vowel sounds. Depending if one or two consonants follow a vowel, such vowel will be either open or closed. Here are several examples of open and closed vowels juxtaposed in words with single and double consonants: Abend-A p fe l , Ofen- offen, Liehe-Lippe. reden-ret ten. An important pitfall for the American singer is to be found in the gutteralization of several sounds which are perfectly normal in American speech and which are not usable in German: these are the vowels [a], [e], and [i] and the consonant [1]. Of value pedagogically then, for the American who must sing in German, is the development of a new sense of sound for these phonemes, and to coordinate the inseparable connection between tongue po.s'ition / tongue movement and those vocal sounds. In so doing, one must pay particular attention that the bright vowels [a], [e], and [i] are not additionally influenced by lateral tension in the facial muscles. Such lateral tension results in a shrill or hollow sound. TNB: ou are a frequent adjudicator at international competitions/or singers in several parts ofih world. In Your judgment, has the level ofperformance achievement risen or has it lowered in the last decade? IF: When I reflect upon the level of the competitions that I have adjudicated in the last ten years. I must say that the performance level has neither greatly risen nor greatly lowered. I did notice at a recent competition in Rio de Janeiro that all the participants were very well prepared. Of course, when one considers the international character of such competitions, good preparation should From the President 0n1i1711Cd   1r0t?1 page 7 than twenty now. I pledge that NA IS will Continue to publish worthwhile materials for our membership. Workshop and NATSAA are two outstanding programs under the sponsorship of NAT S, these will be enhanced with the creation ofadviso- ry councils that will assist the officers responsible for the program. Song composition is an area that needs encouragement; we must explore wa y s to foster more creative song writing by leading composers of today. We need an ErlkOnig for the twentieth centur y . Lastl y , our NAFS Foundation is worth y  of our fullest support and encouragement. I earnestly seek your assistance and help as m y  term of office begins. Do convey to the national hoard your wishes for a more effective organization, an organization that will better serve your professional needs. When we have finished singing Auld Lang Sync at the close of our convention might we achieve a spirit of camaraderie that will lift our spirits and inspire new dedication to the art of teaching singing, a spirit that will carr y  us through the winter and into the first bright blooms of spring. Is it too much to accept the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson when he says: To whatsoever upright mind, to whatsoever heating heart I speak, to VOL] it is committed to educate men. y simple living, b y  an illimitable soul, you inspire, you correct, you embellish all. By your own art you teach the beholder how to do the practicable. According to the depth from which you draw your life, such is the depth not only of your effort, ut of y our manners and your presence. Work straight on in abso- lute dutr,and y ou lend an arm and an encouragement to all the youth of the universe. Consent yourself to be an organ of your highest thought, and lo, suddenly you put all men in your debt, and are the foundation of an energy that goes pulsing on with waves of energy to the borders of society. This ke y note address %t'asgit'en at the Vatio,zal Convention, Louisville, Kentuck   . December, 1981. POCKET COACH PUBLICATIONS STUDY TAPES FOR SINGERS STEREO CASSETTE TAPES   OF ITALIAN AND GERMAN ART SONGS REFERENCE FOR VOICE TEACHERS AND   STUDY AID TO STUDENTS   AND VOCAL PERFORMERS Each song s presented n logical steps: 1. The poem is recited by native speaker, word for word translation included. 2. The poem is spoken in short phrases, with pauses for student to repeat (similar to language study tapes). 3. The poem is melodically spoken over the melody to insure correct diction (German only . 4. The piano accompaniment is played with the melody line, but can be heard sepa- rately if desired on stereo equipment. POCKET COACH STUDY TAPES enable the voice teacher to concentrate on vocal pro- duction and expression—no singing on tapes—ideal for lesson accompaniment and home study. Each tape (6-8 songs) 14.95   Set Italian Art Songs (3 tapes) 36.00   Set German Lieder (6 tapes) 72.00 For free catalog write to POCKET COACH PUBLICATIONS 19850 Lake Chabot Road, Castro Valley, CA 94546 12   AN FEB 1982  Riverside Travel Invites You To. 00 PRINT OR TYPE—Lost name first   I   I   i   _J 5 OLD ADDRESS Street address, Apt. No., or Boss, or RFD.   IC - n . City, State, Zip Code. PLEASE CHECK ONE Member   on-Member NEW ADDRESS: Street address, Apt. No., or Box, or RFD. LU ; .   t City, State, Zip Code Effective Date L   THE RING 1982 Seattle and the  Wagner Festival German Cycle:   July 23 30 English Cycle: July 31 August 7 Includes opera tickets, tour of Mt. Ranier, cruise to Victoria, B.C., and much more LONDON 82 Fine Arts Tour May 22 June 6 ( )aI be a foregone conclusion but it has not always been so. Even in the last rounds of contests in which the highest demands are made upon those who reach that level singers are sometimes so masterful that the first and second prizes have been shared respectively because several contestants meet the same high performance standards. This has been increasingly true in the last five years. in this I see something of an improving tendency in the level of such competitions and I would here like to congratulate the up-and-coming generation of singers. I would also like to dedicate to them all my effort and love and hope that they will never tire in the pursuit and aspiration toward the highest goal in the art of singing. TNB: Mani' thanks to y ou, Frau Fischer, fr your willingness to share y our vii eit poitits on singing with us. it has ahi'ai's been exciting to watch You teach and to hear the positive results of tour teaching in the performances   y our students. Best wishes for continued success [The Editor wishes to acknowledge the assistance of' Mr. Carl Davis. Stuttgart, in the translation of this interview.] Frau Kammersängerin lore Fischer has been a prominent figure in the European concert nor d/or several (lei ac/i's. She has performed with toot of u   nie'rnwiunalli'-acclaimed conductors and orchestras of her generation. as well as at ma/or music festivals. She has introduced a large repertory f contemporar y  vocal literature, much u/it written fur her b y noted composers. Frau Fischer was Jr a number of' years P r ofe ssor a the /loi'hstj ale fur .tusik, Swttgart, and current/v teaches privateh and at the Internationale Somnierakademnie, ' Mo:arteum, Sal:/mrg. She i   /rcquenf member o adjudication panels at international vu a comnpetition.s on several continents, and often gives 020.5/er Iass,'s tit Europe and the U. S. PLEASE SEND CHANGE OFADDRESS NOTICE 60 DAYS IN ADVANCE Opera at Covent Garden, South bank Concerts, Westend Theatre, Museum & Cathedral Lectures, Overnight to Bath & Strat f ord   just some of the highlights 18 DAY   CHINA TOUR October 1982 Chinese cultural performances, Gardens & archeological digs For Free Brochures Contact Your Fine Arts   Travel gency RIVERSIDE TRAVEL P.O. Box 675   Waukesha, WI 53187-0675 414 542 1333 Telex 2-6803 Toll Free (outside Wisconsin 1-800-558-2027 ENGLISH SONG COLLECTIONS The Recording: nglish Song Recital Ian Partridge sings - and Jennifer Partridge accompanies - on this 2-record album of English Songs by Gurney, Delius, Warlock, and Vaughan Williams. Full texts are included. Peters International, PLE   36/7 $17.96 The Printed Music: English Song Collections A selection of our publications, in which are the songs recorded above, and many more - IVOR GURNEY: A Fifth Volume of Songs   60.015) 15.00 By a Bierside; Desire in Spring: Severn Meadows: Song of Ciabhen; The Apple Orchard: The Cloths of Heaven: The Fields are Full; The Night of Trafalgar; The Twa Corbies: Walking Songs FREDERICK DELIUS Texts edit- ed by Peter Pears): A Book of Songs Book 1 (60.013) 7.50 Young Venevil; Twilight Fancies; Hidden Love; The Mnstrel; The Birds' Story; Cradle Song; Summer Landscape; l-Brasil; Black Roses PETER WARLOCK: A Book of Songs   68.704) 7.75 Sleep; Pretty Ring Time; Rest, sweet nymphs; Sigh no more, ladies; And wilt thou leave me thus?; Passing by; Robin Good-fellow; Fair and true; The Lover's maze; Cradle Song: Jillian of Berry: Twelve Oxen And many single songs by R VAUGHAN WILLIAMS All these and many more are listed in our new SOLO SONG CATALOGUE. If you didn't stop to pick up your copy of this new catalogue at the NATS Con- vention last month, write to us now. No charge If you did come to see us in Louisville, thank you for the visit, and keep in touch. M um 1)v1ui,'imni'nf OXFORI) UNIVERSITY PRESS, INC. too MADISON AVIN%JI. NEW YORK, NY l?Ql JAN FEB 1982
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