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STUDIO POLICY Payments by check, cash and Venmo are all accepted ·    Payment is due the 1 st  lesson of the month  (Unless you pay l...

Saturday, February 27, 2016

How to Save your Voice

Suggestions for the vocalist: How to save your voice
1. Avoid abusing your voice.
·       Do nothing to your voice that results in hoarseness and/or throat pain
·       Avoid yelling or screaming to the point of causing hoarseness.
·       Avoid singing so loudly that you develop hoarseness, and avoid singing in situations that are so noisy that you cannot hear yourself singing.
·       When you have a cold or laryngitis, do not try to talk or sing "over the problem. This can lead to vocal fold damage; see your doctor.

2. Avoid misusing your voice.
·       Be careful when using character voices, not to strain, and use especially good breath support.
·       Don't attempt to alter your “normal” speaking voice to create an effect; particularly avoid pitching your voice too low. (If you are using the lowest note of your pitch range for everyday conversation, this is too low.)
·       Avoid taking on roles that you cannot do, that is, don't attempt roles that are out of your range.
·       Avoid use of long run‑on sentences and a rapid speaking rate that stress the vocal apparatus; good breath support for conversational speech is every bit as important as good breath support for singing. (If you don't know what this means, you should consider taking voice lessons, and/or seeing a voice therapist.)

3. Avoid overusing your voice
·       In very noisy environments such as airplanes, minimize conversation.
·       Examine your vocal schedule carefully. Remember that all of your vocal demands are not of equal importance. Avoid making a schedule that leaves no room for rest and recovery.
·       Use amplification when available and appropriate, especially for rehearsals.
·       Use “marking” techniques when appropriate, especially for rehearsais.

4. Monitor your work and home enviroments for possible problems.
·       Avoid, if possible, performing in smoky, dusty, and noisy places.
·       Humidify your bedroom, especially during the winter when when it is dry.

5. Monitor your diet and lifestyle.
·       Eat regularly, and eat a healthy diet.
·       Avoid fried and other fatty foods.
·       Avoid dehydration, since this adversely affects the vocal folds; drink plenty of water.
·       Avoid eating or drinking, particularly alcoholic beverages, within three hours of bedtime.
·       Minimize consumption of caffeine-containing foods and beverages.
·       Strictly avoid smoking or other tobacco use, if you smoke, quit.
·       Exercise regularly; aerobic exercise is best.

6. Avoid unnecessary medications.
·       Don't medicate yourself.
·       Avoid drying medications such as antihistamines.
·       Avoid anesthetic throat sprays.

7. Consider taking voice lessons, even if you've never had a voice problem. Voice lessons have been shown to increase vocal efficiency and decrease the likelihood of developing voice problems.

8. If you need a physician, consult wlth other singers to find an otolaryngologist who has experience in treating vocalists.


Benefits of Vocal Study

I believe firmly in the benefits of Vocal study whether a student plans on entering the musical world in a professional manner or to simply enjoy music.

Vocal study is a discipline that is also a very enjoyable art form.

Anyone can sing!  

Singing develops good posture, which leads to higher levels of confidence.

Ear training comes with Voice training and is an excellent skill for all musicians to learn.

I encourage the singing of song in English, Italian, German and French (or any language!) which further develops the brain leading to even more neural connections. 

With good posture comes breath management techniques. These are invaluable to all human beings as it helps to lower stress hormones, develops control of the breath, and increases the oxygenation of the blood flow to the brain.

Studio Policy


Payments by check, cash and Venmo are all accepted

·  Payment is due the 1st lesson of the month  (Unless you pay lesson by lesson)

·  My fees are currently $120 month for four 30 minute lessons (mailing is fine, if you would like to be billed, please let me know) 

·  If I need to cancel for any reason I WILL make up the time with the student

·  If a make-up lesson is scheduled and the student cancels there will be no additional make – up lesson for that missed time.

·  If the student hoarse or sick – they should NOT sing, but please call, text or email as soon as possible (24 hours notice preferred) if you need to cancel

·  Students will be asked to purchase music (photocopying music is against copyright laws) but I will make every effort to keep to a select few books. There is also a website IMSLP which has music in the public domain and can be printed at no cost.

·  Students, depending on their level of study, will be asked to practice 30-60 minutes daily.    Although piano study is not required, it would be helpful for all students to have basic knowledge of music theory and the ability to play their own melody (if possible).  I am happy to aid students in developing these skills as well!

·  If a student is experiencing excessive absences or tardiness, I will encourage the student to take time off from attending lessons until they have resolved the issue.  

·  Please be on time when dropping or picking up your student :)

Students are encouraged to bring a recording device to all lessons. 

If you have ANY questions regarding voice lessons or my policies, feel free to contact me!

Please remember to PRACTICE daily!  
You will succeed because YOU have worked 

Teaching Philosophy

My teaching philosophy is one that I have been contemplating for several years, even before I was a formal teacher.  I have close relationships with many professors, some of whom are in the public as well as in the private school system in Savannah and other states. 

·      I believe that as teachers we are always mentors to our students as well as examples.  Life led by example is the most powerful method of teaching, although it might appear from the outside to be too slow at times. It is one that slowly works a change in others over long periods of time. 
·      I believe that I should always be at lessons early for my students.  
·      I believe I must always be prepared for every lesson as well as every encounter with students.  I take care to always mark down appointments with students so that I can be there for them.
·      I believe in communication with students and colleagues wherever and whenever possible.  Lack of communication causes confusion and doubt, and in order to maintain healthy relationships with all in our acquaintance there needs to be consistent and clear communication. 
My teaching style takes many forms to help students understand the subject matter.  Music can be confusing for anyone who has never studied. I use recordings of music, video, DVD, as well as the piano, and vocal demonstrations facilitate the learning capabilities of the students.  Most people have many different ways of learning, so I try to introduce material in visual as well as aural ways. 

Welcome to the studio!

       Voice Studio of Heidi Bindhammer
604 E 48th St

M.M. Vocal Performance Georgia Southern University
B.S. Vocal Pedagogy Roberts Wesleyan College

I am a professional classically trained soprano with degrees in Voice Performance as well as Vocal Pedagogy.  In addition to performing with groups in the southeastern United States, I have also performed with members of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. I have been a member of NATS (the National Association of Teachers of Singing) since 2001.

My 20 years of teaching experience includes stints at Georgia Southern University, Armstrong State University, and Savannah State University.  

While at Savannah State University and Armstrong I have taught the following classes:
  • Music History I and II
  • Vocal Pedagogy
  • Diction - International Phonetic Alphabet, Italian, German and French diction
  • Music Appreciation
  • Voice Performance
  • Applied Voice
I specialise in teaching a Classical Method, however, I have found that any singer has success with the Bel Canto method as it can be applied to any style of singing. All that is required is a regular practice regimen.

In addition to teaching vocal studies, I also have several years in the following skills:
aria coaching, foreign language preparation, musicianship, how to practice, audition preparation, portfolio assembling.

Some of my other skills include dance ensemble experience, German language study, piano study, as well acting.


   Messiah soloist, Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus
   Soprano soloist Beethoven 9th Masterworks with Savannah Phil.
   Savannah Sinfonietta Chamber Series - soloist

   Savannah Sinfonietta Knoxville Summer of 1915
   Schubert Mass, Symphony Cathedral Concert
   Southern Georgia Symphony GA

   Savannah Sinfonietta Soloist, performances in Savannah and Richmond HIll

   Messiah, Hilton Head Choral Arts
   The Rescue of Penelope – Hilton Head Orchestra SC
   Opera Gala, Savannah GA

   Exsultate Jubilate – Orchestra Players of Savannah
   Bach Cantata 21 – Collegium Vocale Atlanta GA

   Pops Concert Series, Savannah Symph Pops Concert GA

   Christmas Concert Series, Savannah Symph Pops Concert GA

   Coffee Cantata, Savannah Symphony GA
   Messiah, soprano Savannah GA I Cantori

   Soprano soloist Children’s Mass Rutter  1st Presbyterian Concert Series

May 2010
   Holiday Harmonies – singing ensemble

   Music Alive! 15 performances Live Oak Public Libraries, Savannah

May 2009
   Faculty Recital SSU (organizer and Performer Arts Faculty)

   Faculty Recital SSU Joint, Georgia Southern Univ and First Pres

   German Lieder Benefit Concert Savannah

   Poetry Festival Concert (organizer and performer) SSU

April 2008
   Master Class at SCAD - Facilitator

Dec 2010
   Musical Director of “Tell Pharaoh” SSU

Feb 2006
   Coach Skylarks at Savannah Arts Academy

Feb 2009
   Benefit Concert Savannah Country Day School Orchestral

Feb 2007
   Coaching various students vocally for auditions

   Faculty Recital at Georgia Southern University with Dr. Ricks

   Night of Opera at Georgia Southern University

   Southern Georgia Symphony Masterworks Concert

   L’ameró saró costante, Georgia Southern Statesboro Symp Masterworks concert
   Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra – guest performer


   Barnum, Asbury Theater, Savannah GA
Jenny Lind
March 2015
   The Magic Flute  - Integrative Medicine with Savannah Philharmonic
First Lady, Papagana, Third Lady
   Into the Woods, Asbury Theater
Cinderella’s Mother
   The Telephone – Savannah GA
   The Telephone – Georgia Southern University
   The Mikado – Georgia Southern University
   Dido and Aeneas – I Cantori, Savannah GA
   Trial By Jury – Pensacola Opera Company Pensacola FL
   Gilbert and Sullivan Gala -Pensacola Opera Company Pensacola FL
Yum-Yum, Mabel
   HMS Pinafore – Norfolk Savoyards, Norfolk VA
   The Telephone- Pensacola Opera Company Pensacola FL
   The Impresario – Southern Light Opera, Hattiesburg, MS
Mlle Warblewell
   Pirates of Penzance - Pensacola Opera Company Pensacola FL