Posts Tagged ‘vocal coaching’

More and more phone calls and e-mails we are getting from people who have undergone related or non-related surgeries and who’s vocal cords and other parts of the vocal anatomy got damaged in the process. Recently, we had a few clients who had undergone thyroid removal (thyroidectomy) and all of them ended up with one of their vocal cords being paralyzed (vocal cord paresis).


One of our former clients who’s voice I fixed previously, but who (unfortunately, by not following the assigned protocol) ended up with having her papilloma growing, had been convinced by her ENT specialist to undergo not one, but two vocal surgeries. In the end, she ended up with what is called Sulcus Vocalis (vocal gap) and, thankfully, (just mild) Muscle Tension Dysphonia.

And lastly, a few hours ago, we got an e-mail from a professional person who recently undergone a biopsy procedure for her lung disorder. After the obvious intubation, she ended up with a very breathy, unclear and lower positioned voice. She told us that she read our blogs on Vocal Cord Paresis and felt that she now possesses very similar symptoms to what we have described in our publications.

The other day, I got her on the phone and could hardly make out what she was trying to convey to me.

This is a direct quote from her e-mail to us earlier today:
“I may as well end my life as without my voice I am nothing”

How sad is that?

Sad indeed!

Previously, she wrote that she wakes up with hope every morning that her voice is back to its normal state. Unfortunately though, by itself, it is not going to happen!

We however, with absolute certainty, can declare that WE CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN!

Nevertheless, to rectify the serious voice damage, may take up to 50 hours of our unique voice instruction coupled with the finest herbal and homeopathic remedies to be applied on the wounded and disturbed throat flora.

The above aforementioned remedies will work best when the pressure of the sound is removed from the vocal anatomy. To do so, the one’s voice has to be restructured and practically re-channeled to the set of their facial muscles (sinus cavities). Those facial muscles will play the role of the natural resonator or amplifier for that matter.

However, the whole new vocal mechanism will work in its fullest capacity only when the abdominal muscles will be simultaneously engaged to work with the facial muscles in order to assure the support of the height of the lifted sound as well as the width (the body) of the sound. In this junction, the vocal anatomy would be put to “rest” and thus the healing will begin.

So the mechanics of voice and its application, will be healed, strengthened and reestablished. And, as a result, the vocal anatomy will become sound again!

Thus the mission of Non-SurgicalVoice Repair is accomplished.

In other words: YOUR better voice tomorrow, starts with US today!


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It just happened to me….

I got hit by a Dear! I have to say that it was a very strange experience, to say the list! I have not seen it coming… What I saw, was a deer’s face in my windshield!

It came out of the blue, so to speak. It was just after 10 pm and I was driving at a speed of only 56 km! Thank God that I got a speeding ticket 2 days earlier, lol, Otherwise I possibly would be going much faster and thus, the impact of my collision with the deer could have been much more serious. So my car (which I managed to drive home somehow) ended up being damaged for over $11.000!  To my surprise, the body shop, where the car was towed, said that they will take care of everything, mechanics included. Now, 2 weeks later, they called me and told me that they were unable to fix the engine! Go figure! So they had to ship my car to a Volkswagen dealership after all! Now, at least it makes sense! The body shop is the shop meant to fix the body of the car and the dealership is responsible for the mechanical part of it.

I am saying that, one more time again, to compare this ordeal to the ordeal of those who have been suffering from various voice/vocal disorders.


Just earlier today, I was talking on the phone with the person residing in the Middle East and who, for some time, had been suffering from excessive silent acid reflux which, by extension, effected his speaking and singing voice. Nevertheless, he sounded quite low and quite raspy while speaking.

In his original e-mail to us, he was asking if we are doing it remotely, i.e., via Skype, Facetime or what have you…? I outright wrote to him that his problem, as any other vocal problem, is quite serious, and it qualifies as internal medicine and cannot be addressed (and furthermore treated or cured) remotely.

I also told him that if anybody will offer him that, they will be after his money and not after his interest.

Now let’s visualize my car being fixed remotely…

Is that possible? Take a wild guess……

Now, jokes aside…

Likewise, the damaged voice is a very serious matter, as it has to be restored and brought to its original state, which is easier said than done!

Apparently, my potential client has been researching all kinds of speech therapists and ENT doctors who were recommending him various medications to “treat” and even “cure” silent acid reflux.

Like my former client (band singer) from Venezuela, he too had difficulty to breathe, especially at night time and in order to sleep (at least remotely), he had to use two or three pillows to create almost a sitting position rather than actually lying down in bed.

Needless to say, both guys were doing everything and anything to make their lives easier and suffer less. (At least they thought so…)

Did that help, you may ask?

Again, it did…somewhat …hardly.

The guy from Venezuela finally (after 5 years of planning) reached Toronto and took 20 hours of instruction and treatment. And to complete his voice recovery (and for the maintenance), he attended a 10 hour group Healthy Voice/Vocal Workshop.

On the third day, he (surprisingly) was late for his morning session.

When he finally showed up, he exclaimed – “Sorry Diana, but for the first time in many years, I slept like a log and did not even hear my baby crying”. For the record, he did travel to us with his whole family, including a newborn baby.

By that time (via my special speech and singing exercises), his voice was already lifted off of his vocal box and off of his vocal cords, thus releasing the vocal box and the chest from the pressure of the sound.

The voice was restructured to the set of his facial muscles and thus, was positioned quite far away from the gastric acid, which before was burning his vocal cords and interfering with his breathing.

Needless to say, his problem was solved and, as a side effect, he learned how to speak and sing.

He learned and utilized the method of how to speak and sing smart and not hard, while concurrently, he also learned how to apply minimum efforts to achieve maximum results! Needless to say, he was able to power his voice ‘upon design’ and knew predominantly what will come out of his mouth without taking wild guesses and keeping his fingers crossed and dying of fear.

There is, of course a possibility with acid reflux (as well as with some other internal health disorders), that it has to be addressed either way, and not necessarily, but rather simultaneously, with persisting voice issues.

But at least, in the interim (with the proper voice mechanics instruction and treatment), the person’s voice has been saved. It has also been assured that the voice damage will never occur ever again, (should the person retain the specific instructions embedded into him during the voice restoration sessions).

The moral of the above is:

Do not look for gimmicks, such as the “remote approach” or unneeded prescribed medical drugs! Fix the mechanics of voice first and everything else after that.

Now, again speaking of my car:

The body shop, evidently, fixed the frame of the car, not realizing that the mechanical parts could appear to be beyond repair! As of today, the Volkswagen dealership cannot figure out what is wrong with the engine and other mechanical parts under the hood. The body shop made the car look real good, shiny and clean; but if, mechanically, it’s still not sound, then all their work will be completely obsolete!

For some reason people who suffer from voice disorders (speakers or singers) think that there is something wrong with their voice…? They do not realize that the main problem lies due to the insufficient application of the voice, which could potentially cause all kinds of voice damage.


So please “try not to work on the fridge when the stove is broken” so to speak…

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You clearly feel and know that you have a voice issue, but your ENT Specialist declares that there is nothing wrong with you and he can not detect any voice problems from the medical point of view… So naturally, it makes you upset and confused and you don’t know what to do next.

Since our motto is that ‘your better voice tomorrow with start with us today’, we can pinpoint any mechanical problem(s) which your voice may experience. The fact is that from the physical point of view, everything within your vocal anatomy may seem to be intact. Therefore, you cannot blame a physician or ENT doctor for not seeing any problems with your voice.

If that is the case, you should realize that you have been using your voice incorrectly (Speaking and/or singing) and thus, most likely, you had dropped your voice in the lower-throat position.  Also, with incorrect breathing, you could have dried up your throat flora.

Singers would probably realize that they have a voice issue a little faster then just regular speaking people. The singers would notice that their range is subsiding and it is much harder for them to reach higher or lower notes and that the quality of their voice had become much poorer. Whereas the speakers might not detect their voice problem soon enough.

The regular people will only realize that they have acquired a voice problem when their voice becomes raspy and hoarse and they experience difficulty speaking. Also, people with the poor diet (heavy mucus-filled foods and highly acidic foods), may have their voices affected by it. The dry and filthy air (polluted with chemicals like mold, asbestos, etc.,) could affect the upper and lower respiratory functions of the body, and then respectively effect the breathing and the voice by osmosis.

And the last (but not the least) cause could be the suppressed emotions.


That’s where the affected person needs to check their thyroid with a holistic practitioner who is aware that the thyroid (according to the holistic teaching), represents suppressed emotions and hurts. Once the thyroid becomes tight and practically “closes on you”, it is that much harder for the voice to ‘come out onto the surface’ freely and easily.

We at The Royans Institute for Non- Surgical Voice Repair, specialize in a holistic approach to voice mechanics.

And where the doctors say “We don’t know”… we say “We do”!

We promise that we will make your bad voice days good and your good voice days better!

How do we deliver that promise…?

By addressing your symptoms and the causes, and by making YOU understand what happened and why. We also teach you what not to do and what to do in order to avoid future voice problems. We will teach you how to maintain your voice hygiene, strength and overall health.

The knowledge is confidence and the confidence is success… in whatever you do…. and do by design!

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What do we mean by that?

Firstly, any person should possess a healthy voice which is also consistent with the persons’ height, weight and the their inner ‘make-up’ in general.

Sometimes, and luckily not too often, you can see a quite petite woman, but yet hear her heavy and ‘bassy’ voice.

A good example would be two well-known actresses (one of whom is also a singer). The singer/actress is Miley Cyrus and the other actress is Julia Stiles – pretty girls that are speaking with much heavier voices then their physiques would ever suggest.

We, in fact, at The Royans Professional Vocal School, would be able to get rid of the heaviness and thickness of their quite-low voices. If they (or them alike) embraced the Vocal Science technique, their voices would be lifted off of their (somewhat) heavy and thick vocal cords, which were given to them at birth.

The thicker the vocal cords are, the lower voice will prevail.

And, on the contrary, if the person possesses very thin vocal cords, the body of the sound will never happen and the voice will be high and squeaky.

Now, speaking of the lower voice (lower then desired), it would become much lighter if it was coming out of the sinus cavities (facial muscles). In that case, it would be sufficiently amplified, while concurrently supported with the person’s abdominal muscles; and thus, the person’s voice would sound much lighter, much brighter and much more resonant. Needless to say, the person’s enunciation and pronunciation would be greatly enhanced as well.

On the contrary, we have received male clients with extremely high voices who suffered enormously as, very often; they were mistaken for a female (especially when they were speaking over the phone).

By virtually employing the same speech and singing exercises, we were able to make a person in question to sound more solid, and thus, possessing a much lower tone. While doing so, we were able to build a platform underneath of a skinny, light sound. In other words, in both cases, due to incongruences between the individuals and their voices, the natural balance was compromised.

So our pedagogy and methodology assures the perfect balance between the human voice and the human body.

With that said, people who are speaking ‘too high’ (given for consideration, their inner make-up’) will speak lower, and thus, will project more certainty and more confidence delivering their message. The male speaker will no longer feel uncomfortable and embarrassed.

The people who are speaking too low will sound a little more “human” and more coherent and, therefore, they will be better received with their message, and thus, more understood.

I am sure that those females who possess much lower tone than anticipated, probably also not always feel ‘feminine enough’. So they too will acquire more confidence with their newly-found femininity in their voice and, perhaps, even more grace and poise (so to speak) attached to that premise.

As for singers: The male singer will be able to sing in a rock genre (if so desired), since in that context, the tenor, and not the bass voice, is required. It is a known fact that the classic rock of all times was primarily created for the tenor range of voice.

After the above had been dealt with, the speakers (especially) have to actually learn not only how to speak preserving their voice in balance and employing the components of the wholesome mechanism which will allow them to use their voice in the fullest capacity possible, but also understand what the exact message is that they are trying to convey and deliver.

Once they understand the above, they will be taught to embrace a certain phrasing, emphasis and inflections; speed and particular intonation, depending of the context of the script and (down the road) the improvisation of that script.

We call this course, “The Total Communicator”.

The singers are not immune to the latter either.  After all, they are also delivering a story through their singing. And the more they understand what they are singing about and how to bring it better to the understanding of the listener, the more successful their performance will be. The singers especially need to embrace the Vocal Science technique, as they require an aimed projection and delivery of their voice.

So the definition of the true professionalism is such that the singer would hear (with his/her “inner ear”), the command of his/her brain to their physical body and then their voice, before they open their mouth to deliver the singing message.

The latter does apply to the professional speakers as well. They too have to be able to engage the audience with their voice (and the aforementioned voice components) so they would be also heard and understood.

So, needless to say, we are in a business to help YOUR VOICE to make sense at all given times (with whatever you are doing), everywhere and anywhere!

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Vocal Science™ Technique advocates not only health-care for the voice, but also for the human being as a whole.

In order to structure, place and project the voice to its aimed destination, the alignment between the subconscious and conscious mind has to take place. In a nutshell, Vocal Science™ method is about the integration and synergy between mental, physical, physiological, emotional and vocal components.

When the subconscious and conscious mind are aligned, the person is more inclined to think and to act upon thinking. Unfortunately, (especially lately and due to enormous stress), people often act irrationally and without thinking first. Some, instead, are thinking forever and never act upon their thoughts.

Both statements suggest the complete imbalance of the above aforementioned components. That said, addressing the above aforementioned components could have a positive effect on the person while their voice is being fixed and/or trained. Those people who suffer from upper or lower respiratory infections and/or asthma could also benefit from proper voice training via the Vocal Science™ method.

The female population of the world could definitely benefit from intensive work with facial muscles, which (no doubts) provide the toning of such muscles and significantly reduce facial wrinkles.

While working with the abdominal muscles (for the support of the height and body of the sound), the stomach muscles become much stronger and the tummy is constantly “tucked-in”; which (by itself) makes the person look and feel trimmer, slimmer and more beautiful.

Once the person feels and experiences all of those benefits, he/she (by osmosis) would want to execute a healthy diet; stop bad habits (like smoking, drinking, drugs), and rather, instead, engage in physical fitness, lose or gain weight (whichever needed) and overall, become a more healthy and fit human being…

The conventional vocal coaching, however, suggests to stick the stomach out and fill it with air for, so to speak, “better breathing”; and thus, look and sound like a “pregnant ballerina”, nevertheless.

If you refer to my book (Vocal Science – Flight to the Universe), you would find a chapter, which describes such an ordeal.

It also falls into a key chapter which is called “How Not to Become a Singer and Work Harder at Doing it”. Now you can draw the conclusion from there…

In the past, I personally got across the new student who’s demeanor appeared to be skinny, but her “quite ballooned” stomach suggested that she might have been pregnant for at least 5 to 6 months. When I inquired about it, she was very surprised and revealed to me that she wasn’t even sexually active!

Go figure!

She also revealed to me that she had been taking conventional singing lessons for the last 10 years, and was suggested by her coach to “stick her stomach out while singing, at all given times”. So her abdominal muscles were warn out and became weak; and thus, she indeed resembled a woman who would be in her second trimester.

To conclude:

The Russian proverb is such:

“In a healthy body, there is a healthy spirit”.

Since I always advocate that the voice is your spirit and is also a reflection of the state of your being, (not to mention an identification of who you are), then (without a doubt) the healthy voice should be in perfect “Marriage” with a healthy and sound body.

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We truly love to transform lives and put people back into their “vocal shoes”, (like one of our clients from the past professed to us).

We work with regular people with speech problems and with those who want to turn their speaking voice into their profession. We also work with people who just simply want to learn how to sing better. And, respectively, we work with professional singers who either want to prevent their voice from damage, or who already had damaged it. And are now in need of non-surgical voice repair.

If we are talking about any voice repair cases at all, we are talking about a very complex approach to treatment, which, first of all, includes psychological counseling, and thus helps to identify the actual cause of ones’ vocal trauma.

Sometimes, their vocal (and other related) problems have very deep roots lying beneath. And thus, from my side, it requires a lot of skillful experience, as well as true desire and passion to really get to the bottom of it in order to recover that voice (i.e., shut-down and wounded spirit).

I always say that I love what I do and I do what I love.

And in order to work with those damaged voices, and not only vocally injured individuals, you really have to have a true passion to deliver the actual result.

Nevertheless, our students, (patients), coming to us from all walks of life.

They possess different cultures, different colours, different heights and weights. What they have in common is that they are all human beings with sound (and sometimes, not too sound) minds, with the emotions which some of them “wear on their sleeves”, but some have their emotions completely suppressed.

To work with the latter, it is much more difficult, as these individuals are obviously not very open and also very afraid to reveal how hey really feel. Moreover, they withhold very important information, which could be crucial with respect to their healing process.

When I finally break through those individuals, I see a lot of interesting reactions: like, for example, uncontrollable tears or uncontrollable laughter. Yet again I have to be very sensitive and very gentle towards their feelings in order to use their natural human reactions towards their benefit.

Once I am able to “get hold of them” I am able to turn their lives around and practically “resurrect them” back to their normal lives and their normal (and even more so improved), voices.

To deal with the above, you really have to love it and feel positive and passionate about it, which I DO… on an everyday basis.

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Does anybody know…?

Does anybody care for that matter…?

Vocal Science… The Best or…Nothing.


Quite often, people who require voice repair have some other health problems to start with. These health problems could be a trigger to voice loss, or any kind of voice issues.

Sadly enough, our Canadian singer Gord Downie has recently been diagnosed with Terminal Brain Cancer; and peculiarly enough, the tumor is apparently located near the speech center of his brain…

I am not a doctor; though it makes me wonder weather or not his not exactly adequate singing (in my subjective professional opinion) and, understandably, a lifestyle of a rocker (which usually comes with the territory), has anything to do with it?

This is just speculation on the matter, but it probably has some merit.

Let’s also examine a very serious disorder called Spasmodic Dysphonia:

I personally call it “Vocal Epilepsy”, as the voice of the sufferer spasms uncontrollably. The disease, in its nature, is neurological. It, quite likely, could be environmental. However, viruses such as Strep Throat, for example, could also trigger it. It happens a lot to people who, in their nature, are very emotional; also to those who speak very fast and very loud and whose lifestyles are very poor.

So between the environmental causes, air-born viruses and smocking, drinking and drug use, spasmodic dysphonia could easily occur.

Last year, I got an email from a person who was originally diagnosed with Muscle Tension Dysphonia. With this type of Dysphonia, the sufferers’ voice gets trapped in their neck muscles. That usually happens to speakers and singers.

That type of dysphonia is very rarely induced by viruses or environmental causes. It simply occurs due to misuse and abuse of one’s voice (speaking or singing). If left untreated, it may easily turn into Spasmodic Dysphonia.

The person who wrote to me last year revealed that she has now been diagnosed with Spasmodic Dysphonia. Speaking with that person on the phone, I had determined that I possibly could have improved her condition to a degree, but definitely would not be able to cure it. In fact, such a disorder as Spasmodic Dysphonia is generally considered un-curable. However, if it’s still in a mild form (stage one or two) it could be treated to a near-full recovery. So, in the case of the person first diagnosed with Muscle Tension Dysphonia a year prior, the Spasmodic Dysphonia disorder could have been prevented if the former was timely treated.

There is another category of people who, instead of expressing their emotions out loud, just simply suppress them. In the holistic teaching, the thyroid (the gland/cartilage in the neck that secretes hormones regulating growth and development) represents suppressed emotions and hurts.  If those emotions are suppressed for too long, the voice gradually begins to drown to the lower throat, then to the chest and could practically “die”  at the person’s gut, so to speak.

All of that brings us to a “full picture” which points out to a complete imbalance within.

So all of this means that if the person is too loud and too emotional, he or she could easily experience voice loss.

On the other hand, if the emotions are suppressed, the person could also easily lose their voice.

Moreover, in both cases, they could acquire such disorders like Muscle Tension Dysphonia or even Spasmodic Dysphonia. Partial loss of speech could also be a symptom of a pre-stroke condition, or even a Lou Gehrig’s decease (ALS).

To conclude: All of this is obviously not a joke; and the moral of the latter is that you should keep yourself in perfect balance. That will prevent you from all kinds of health problems; especially those that could lead to serious voice issues.

Best of voice and best of health in general to all of you!

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