Warming up the choir is a must for a productive singing session. By adding some fun yet effective vocal warmups, the choir will be better focused for the singing ahead while also benefiting by exercising their skills. Frequent choir warmups can even help singers better develop their voices, helping them in almost every capacity when it comes to their vocals.
Vocal warmups for choir are also a great exercise for beginners. New additions to the group get the chance to bond with their fellow singers while learning more about their own vocal abilities, so its always doing.
Identifying the Right Vocal Warm Ups Exercises
It’s important to know what vocal exercises offer before integrating them into warmups. For instance, you may want to work on
breathing exercises to help strengthen breathing and articulation, in which beginning the warmups by getting the choir to focus on taking deep breaths can be very helpful.
Continuing with the breathing example, you can then instruct each singer on how to breathe in using their diaphragm as opposed to their lungs, ensure their posture remains relaxed, and how feeling the abdomen can help assist with proper breathing.
Always consider the purpose of the exercise and try to change things up to work on different aspects of the choir’s vocals, including range building, pitches, articulation, etc.
Start Slow and Build From there
When working on vocal warmups for choir, be sure to consider the singer’s perspective. Warmups should start sow to avoid anything too intense that could cause damage, fatigue, or simply be too complex for them to try.
You want to start with gentler exercises that stretch the vocals and provide a nice range building, and from there you can build
into more difficult exercises if needed. It’s good to plan ahead to ensure exercises have an efficient flow to them, so think about what techniques to work on that day and how to gradually build a warmup exercise.
For example, you may want to start with a basic breathing exercise before moving onto lip trills. From there, you can build into chanting rhythms of songs, before finishing on something fun but energetic, such as playing a song at double speed (tongue twisters are great fun in this regard), replacing lyrics with claps and stomps, or having singers put on funny voices.
Encourage Relaxed Voices
While warming up is very important you also want your singers to have relaxed voices, otherwise their vocals may not be at their best. Tension leads to poor tone, which in turn leads to a subpar choir, so try to incorporate exercises aimed at relaxing the voice.
Humming slides are quite good for this, going from low to high notes a few times. Another great vocal relaxation is to sing a melody (maybe the song you are currently practicing) but rather than use lyrics replace the words with random syllables.
Also, always get your choir to yawn during warmups – it’s a fun yet effective way to get the vocals relaxed and to stretch muscles in the mouth.