What was the first thing you did when you got a new board game that came in a box? After it was open and you took out the all the pieces inside and you read the rules. You couldn’t play the game if you didn’t know the rules.
How would it be then, to learn what the game was about if you had to guess? Think of all the possible ways you could come up with a game using a Monopoly board and its equipment!
So, you decide to take singing lessons. Does anyone tell you what the “rules” are? Does anyone hand you a sheet of paper that tells you if you are playing the game the way the game is supposed to go? Do they give you any “rules”? How do you know if there are official “variations” of the game?
Answer: YOU DON”T GET ANY INFORMATION LIKE THIS.
What you get is one lesson’s worth of training at a time. If you are young or a novice, you may have absolutely no clue about singing training, singing proficiency, singing excellence, singing health and you may not gain this information for years, maybe decades. In fact, you might NEVER get it.
What is a healthy sound? What is a marketable sound? Are they compatible? If so, in what way? Where do you, particularly, fit in? Are you talented? Do you have ability? What are your weaknesses? How can they be addressed? If you have career aspirations, how do you meet them? How long will it take? What do you have to do to get to where you would like to go? How do you know if you are making reasonable progress? How do you know if your instructor is helping you or even if she is any good?
This could go on, as you can imagine. Is it any wonder then, that we have students who are confused? That we have teachers who don’t know that they don’t know. We are a profession that calls itself a profession but one that has almost nothing in the way of standards. How do we know that we are being professional? How many singing teachers know, let alone live up to, the Code of Ethics of NATS, NYSTA or any other singing teaching organization? If someone violates that code, does anything happen to that person? What is the penalty for being unethical?
Think about this. Really. THINK.