Monthly Archives: January 2014

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Mary Ann flyer

Thank you for visiting my neglected website. As I wrap up work on the pending book, updates will follow here.

If you have questions about vocal technique or Breathing Coordination MDH, or if you’d like to make an appointment for a consultation or session, please feel free to contact me at 818-219-8226. You may also find information about Breathing Coordination MDH at www.breathingcoordination.ch.

Thank you for your patience. I’m in the process of rebuilding this site to include the Breathing Coordination MDH work which has become so integral to my own singing as well as to my students and clients.

Below is a link to my presentation in 2016 at UCLA Medical Center for the LUPUS LA 2016 Patient Conference. Skip the first minute, and forget the part of the intro referring to getting “more breath” since that’s absolutely not the point. But she was graciously doing the best she could. The practice is about optimal breathing with minimal effort, and many people are over-inhaling. Anyway, they also didn’t mention that there would be a video, so I walk off camera as did the other presenters. 18 minutes isn’t much to explain the practice, history, and try to give some quick tips to easier breathing to these lupus patients, each different from the next. Still, I received great feedback that it was enlightening and helpful, and hope you find it interesting.

 

First introduced to Breathing Coordination in 2011 at a voice lesson in New York with my long-time classical voice teacher David Jones, I’ve began receiving training from Robin De Haas and Lynn Martin beginning in 2012, and after roughly 350 hours of intensive training. I became the first certified practitioner in the United States. The demand for this technique has been staggering to me. What begins with introducing an existing voice student to Breathing Coordination inevitably leads to a chain of referrals of other singers, teachers, and a whole range of people with breathing challenges. These can be high-performance athletes or the very ill suffering with COPD, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Of course the technique serves singers beautifully, and I’ve often heard the very words I used myself when I made this discovery: “This is the missing piece!”

Although many in the fields of singing, Pilates, athletics, respiratory therapy etc. have long been aware of the challenge of exhaling more fully without locking the ribs, I’m astounded by the level of precision that Lynn and Robin have brought to the techniques of the late Carl Stough.

Carl Stough was a renowned voice teacher and conductor who, when asked to try to help end-stage emphysema patients to breathe more easily, worked instinctively. Through one-on-one sessions with every imaginable kind of client, he developed Breathing Coordination over many decades of private without being able to explain exactly what he was doing and why he achieved such astounding results, including the 1968 U.S. Olympic track team which swept the gold medals in very smoggy, high-altitude Mexico City. But despite requests from the medical profession to train others to do what he was doing, Carl was unable to spread the techniques effectively. All that remained after Carl passed were a handful of enthusiastic clients who had taken sessions with Carl, only a few of whom attempted to duplicate his work.

It was Lynn Martin’s thirty years of sessions with Carl Stough combined with her accomplishments in Functional Anatomy and Ideokinesis that have brought about the medical understanding of Breathing Coordination. Everything is rooted firmly in functional anatomy. In my own studies with Lynn, we have focused intensely on every structure in the body, whether muscle, bone, or cartilage, which has any part of or influence on on breathing. Every rib, the roughly 100 articulations of the ribcage, intercostal muscles, the abdominal muscles, the spinal column and optimal alignment, the psoas, the crura of the diaphragm, etc.. The list is nearly endless, and the process is truly fascinating. Certainly I find it immensely rewarding to help singers to improve their breath control, but the other benefit for singers is much more important, and that’s vocal health.

Robin De Haas, a voice teacher in Switzerland who’s is renowned all over Europe for his work with repairing damaged voices, has been tremendously informative. I’ll write more in time as much is happening!

In 2016, I began reworking the Robin’s transliteration of his highly acclaimed book, La Voie de la Voix (The Path of the Voice), and we expect it’s release in late 2017 or early 2018.