Our task is to form veritable talents who possess the necessary gifts to become masters, without attending to the ungifted mediocrity.

Liszt to Giovanni Sgambati

Classical Singing BA Training Course Description

Goal

Education of classic singers (Lied and oratorio) and opera singers who will be able to meet the expectations of modern performing practice on a technically and artistically high level.

 

Programme

Doing exercises for vocal and respiratory organs, learning as much different pieces as possible (Lieder, arias, chamber compositions) and performing them in their original languages, studying the characteristics of various vocal types and getting acquainted with the interpretation of specific musical styles. These steps are taken during the training in a way that best suits the talent of the student.

 

Suggested Literature

  • Sík-Szabados: Műdalok I., II., III., IV., V., VI., VII., VIII.;
  • Ádám: A dal mesterei;
  • Ricordi: Arie antiche;
  • Bartók – Kodály: 20 magyar népdal;
  • Kodály: Magyar népzene III.;
  • Different editions of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven-compositions (Edition Peters, Breitkopf, Universal);
  • Famous operatic arias (Edition Peters).

 

Grading

Students are obliged to pass an exam at the end of each semester in the presence of all teachers. Grade is given on a five point scale.

 

Examination material

I. year: 5 baroque songs or arias (the Parisotti collection is suggested, but the compositions can be chosen from other collections as well) – 4 classical songs – 2 romantic songs – 4 folksong arrangements (3 of them Hungarian) – 2 Hungarian songs – 1aria.

In the course of each semester 3 or 4 compositions have to be sung in their original language, preferably Italian.

*from this repertoire the student chooses 3and the teaching staff 2 compositions to be performed at the exam*

II. year: 1 recitativo scene (opera, oratorio or cantata performed alone or with partner) – 2 baroque songs or arias – 4 classical songs – 4 romantic songs – 2 Schubert Lieder (just one from the Peters I. collection allowed) – 2 folksong arrangements (Bartók or Kodály) – 2 20th century songs – 1 aria from an oratorio or a cantata – 2 operatic arias.

*from this repertoire the student chooses 3 and the teaching staff further 3 compositions to be performed at the exam, 50% of the songs have to be performed in their original language*

III. year: 2 Liszt songs – 4 Hungarian songs (1 has to be from the 19th century, 2 from the 2nd part of the 20th century) – 2 20th century songs (not Hungarian) – 2 classical songs – 2 songs or ballads from either Bartók or Kodály – 2 arias from an oratorio or a cantata – 2 operatic arias – 1 ensemble from an oratorio or an opera (duet, trio or quartet).  

*from this repertoire the student chooses 3 and the teaching staff further 3 compositions to be performed (in a free chosen order) at the exam. All compositions have to be performed in their original languages. If this is not possible, the minimum is 50%. The student is obliged to bring to the exam a detailed list of the compositions studied during the semester. Those chosen for the exam have to be underlined in advance.*

 

Further Subjects

Coaching – Practicing to perform together, learning as much compositions as possible on an artistically high level. The coach is present on classes, exams, concerts and preparations for competitions, supporting the learning process.

 

Repertoire Knowledge /Lied Repertoire – Getting acquainted with the oeuvre of important composers of all periods analysing their works from harmonic, formal and dramaturgic aspects. Studying the relationship of lyrics and melody and the way to depict different characters in music. Analysing differences of strophic and through-composed examples.

Suggested Literature:
  • Scores of works studied during the academic year;
  • Bartha: A zenetörténet antológiája,
  • Szabolcsi – Tóth: Zenei lexikon I-III.;
  • Brockhaus-Riemann: Musiklexikon 1-3;
  • Hopkins: Great composers.

 

Repertoire of Lieder in German – Understanding and authentic pronunciation of lyrics in German, polishing the specific interpretational problems, cooperating on concerts. The subject is taught by two teachers – a coach and a native German speaker.

Suggested Literature:
  • Fischer-Dieskau: Schubert und seine Lieder;
  • Mozart: Lieder, Band I., Ausgabe für Sopran oder Tenor;
  • Finkowski: Sprecherzieherisches Elementarbuch.

 

Chamber singing – Primary goal is to practice singing in an ensemble, paying attention to other vocal parts, to the harmonies of the accompaniment and the musical texture created together. The material studied follows closely the repertoire learned during individual lessons, guiding the students from easier pieces of different periods to duets, trios and complex ensembles as found in oratorios and operas.

Suggested literature:

  • Carissimi: Partenza dalla sua Donna, 2 sopranos;
  • J. S. Bach: Suscepit Israel (Magnificat), S-Ms-A;
  • Mozart: „Don Giovanni", Duett: „La cidarem la mano...";
  • Kodály: Epigrammák – fragments S-T or S-A.

 

Stage Acting – Developing the personality of the performer through self-knowledge and fantasy, getting ready to feel comfortable on stage, gaining physical and psychological readiness, practicing contact with partner. Great accent is put on harmonising acting and singing skills. Students are obliged to take part in a public exam at the end of each semester demonstrating how they grew professionally.

Stage Speech – Gaining basic knowledge in artistic speech. Regular workshops are held in the following areas of interest: articulation, accentuation, recitation of poetry, delivery of texts.

Stage technique – Gaining body awareness, dealing with stress on stage, training and improvising movement to music, practicing contact-techniques, pantomime, social dancing, etc.

Performance practice – Participation in 2 concerts per semester.