Student Spotlight: Connecting the Voice with Ethan Wright

Ethan Wright

Our Student Spotlight today at Arabella’s Voice Studio is Ethan Wright. Ethan is a graphic design artist who has a passion for motion graphics. Outside of being a singer, he loves making music videos, logos, and graphics for his friends in the music business. 

Ethan is an energetic student who started signing when he was young but had to detour his musical endeavors to focus on other parts of life. He recently got the itch to start singing again and found his way to AVS where he’s been a fun addition to our constantly growing roster of students. 

Vocal Technique

Growing up and singing in choirs, Ethan has always had a powerful voice, but sometimes he struggles with how to use that power – it’s a common thing that lots of untrained singers contend with. When to push harder, when to breathe, when to pull back, how to efficiently divide breaths within a phrase, how to strengthen your diaphragm, voice placement…the list can go on forever! 

As Ethan is grasping some of these different techniques, he’s quickly learning how to harness that power and use it to produce some impressive, cohesive, and beautiful sounds. Every singer works toward that point where the notes become more musical, the singing becomes effortless, and the performances reach a flow state where you lose yourself in song, and Ethan is well on his way! 

On top of working on the fundamentals, Ethan is working on expanding his range and falsetto, and as a huge fan of rock and metal music, he’s adding some vocal distortion to his singer’s toolbox. Vocal distortion is a technique used by singers to intentionally alter the sound of the voice, producing a gritty, raspy, or edgy quality. This style can be risky to a singer’s vocal health if the wrong technique is employed, and Ethan is learning how to produce effective vocal distortion without straining or injuring his vocal folds. 

Connecting the Voice (physical vs. expressive)

Learning to ‘connect’ your voice while singing involves multiple ideas wrapped into one larger concept. There’s the physical side of connecting the voice – then there’s the expressive, mental, emotional, and spiritual connection to something larger. A big focus for Ethan with his lessons is finding the comfort zone within his voice, exploring his falsetto, discovering uses for light, breathy vocals, and also tapping into an expressive space as a performer he was unaware even existed! 

Physically Connecting the Voice

The concept of connecting the voice physically can refer to several different aspects. Things like the physical act of your vocal folds coming together to vibrate and produce sound, learning how to seamlessly ‘connect’ your falsetto and your chest voice, or mixed voice, and connecting your breathwork effectively. Ethan has excelled at starting to understand these physical techniques in a very short period and applying them to his performances. 

Expressive Vocal Connection

In addition to the physical techniques Ethan is working on with his voice coach, he has started to find and appreciate another space within singing that doesn’t get talked about as much. It’s not really a skill, it’s more of an abstract idea that’s a little harder to explain. 

There’s a place within expression where singers have this intangible ability to connect with themselves and connect to the listener. It’s a mental, emotional, and sometimes even spiritual state. This concept – as Ethan is learning – is not a “technique” like breath control or vibrato. It’s more of an awareness or a place that singers tap into and harness during a performance. It can happen both live or while recording, and it is the ultimate space of true artistic connectivity. 

It’s that place you go as a music fan when you get so lost in listening to a song that nothing else matters. It’s impossible to directly put your finger on, but as Ethan is finding out, the more connected you get to the music, the more frequently you enter that magical space. 

Keep Learning!

Ethan is excited to continue his growth with us here at AVS and said our student testimonials are what sold him on choosing our studio – and we couldn’t be happier he’s with us! Outside of his focus on vocal lessons, Ethan recently got into exploring the Vocaloid. It’s voice synthesizer software that allows the user to create vocal melodies with lyrics and adjust different parameters. This allows the user to get super creative with different MIDI elements while creating unique soundscapes and melodies. 

Ethan also used to produce songs and plans to get back to his roots in songwriting where he’ll incorporate the Vocaloid into his productions. A long-term goal for Ethan is to get into producing music for different gaming companies. In the meantime though, he’s going to keep plugging away at expanding his range, working on his falsetto, learning about vocal distortion, and working on the fundamentals!

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Blog, group classes, musicianship, student spotlight

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