Avesta, harmony and limbering up exercises.
The range of vowels :
a ---- like in calm
ê ---- like in bless
é ---- like in edition
i ----- like in pity
u ---- like in German ü, somehow like in pew
ou --- like in full
eu --- like in German schön, close to bird or hurt
o ---- like in go
vowels in the four languages.
Harmony and limbering up exercises, combined with the singing of vowels.
I. ---- SEATED POSITION, hands placed naturally on thighs; spinal column held quite straight although without stiffness; shoulders hanging naturally. Feet lie entirely flat on the ground, without touching. Complete relaxation of all parts of the body, monitor the facial expression.
Intonation of the series of vowels
a -- ê -- é -- i -- u -- ou -- eu -- o -- mm
Pronounce the final vowel o, following it with the consonant m, prolonged by holding the mouth shut in order to perpetuate the sound vibration inside and thus reach the brain and nerve centres.
These vowels are to be sung taking the following points into account :
a) Vowels are sung successively on the first note of the scale -- do --, then on the second -- ré --, and so on, with each of the vowels being maintained during the entire breath.
a, on -- do -- during a complete exhalation
ê, on -- do -- during a complete exhalation
é, on -- do -- during a complete exhalation
and so on, for all the vowels.
b) The complete series of vowels is sung in a single breath on each of the notes in the scale.
a -- ê -- é -- i -- u-- ou -- eu -- o -- mm
on the note -- do -- ; then all these same vowels on the note -- ré -- ; and so on for the entire scale, without ever taking a breath while uttering the vowels.
c) Each vowel is sung on each of the notes of the rising scale (and falling scale, as wished).
a, on the note -- do
a, on the note -- ré
a, on the note -- mi, etc.
Then ê, on -- do
ê, on -- ré
ê, on -- mi, etc.
and so on for all vowels, with each one being uttered over the entire length of an exhalation.
d) The same vowel is held during the whole rising scale (and falling scale as wished) over a single breath.
a, on -- do -- ré -- mi -- fa -- sol -- la -- si -- do.
(a --- is therefore used to run through the scale without further intake of breath).
e) Each vowel is intoned and maintained on the same note, over a complete exhalation.
a, on -- do
ê, on -- ré
é, on -- mi, etc.
f) The series of vowels is sung on the notes of the scale, in a single exhalation.
a -- ê -- é -- i -- u -- ou -- eu -- o -- mm
(on do -- ré-- mi -- fa -- sol -- la -- si -- do)
Instead of always singing the scale, one can also sing the common chord..
On peut également chanter à bouche close, en maintenant
diverses positions des dents :
Lips open, incisors together.
Lips open, molars together.
Lips closed, teeth not touching.
The tongue, which must always be kept very supple, can also be left in its natural position: tip against lower incisors; or possibly tip rolled on itself, turned over against the palate. These alternative variations make it possible to produce quite different vibratory effects, and represent very real glandular massages.
When humming with one's mouth closed, it is helpful to follow the enunciation of the vowels in one's mind; the effect on brain cells is significant, and the "mimic" or internal formation: position of the tongue, palate, uvula, etc., changes depending on the vowel being "thought".
The purpose of humming with one's mouth closed is to concentrate the sound vibration within and to bring it to the brain, then finally TO the heart. This desire might seem excessively pretentious or impossible... Only those who try, while completely relaxed and with their mind focused in a correct and wholesome direction, will succeed in finally feeling harmony and peace, will receive the light that such exercises confer, and that will prove to them that the link has been made between their brain and their heart - the throne of Thinking. Each individual alone can explain to him or herself, by proving it, the simple and grandiose truth of what is stated here.
These vibrations, which reach into the centre of the brain and heart, are obtained through the intensity, the pure clarity of the sound's "attack", the natural "vibrato" ( not exaggerated or forced ) of the vocal cords, and through the termination by a gentle humming with one's mouth closed.
Vibration is the life, the song, the harmony existing in the whole world around us and in all that is created, --- it is therefore, in the singing as we understand it here, from the point of view of developing awareness, uplifting individuality, the most important as well as the most delicate point of the exercises of intonation or singing: it is essential to follow and direct within oneself the vibration produced by the sound.
It is good, as a means of developing the voice and therefore from the point of view of the internal resonance that this involves, sometimes to precede the sound's "attack", when singing vowels, with a guttural, labial or dental consonant. -- g -- b -- d, etc. The roof of one's mouth changes when a consonant comes first, in a way projecting the vowel; the guttural sound -- g -- amongst others lifts the base of the gullet, raises the roof of the mouth and thus enables a clear and pure utterance of the sound to be made, starting from this positioning of the vocal organs. The shape taken by the gullet when yawning should be observed and used for vocalisations, which will thus be made with the throat "fully extended". People trying this out are likely to be surprised at the comfort that they feel, for any true "flights" of voice. The perfect relaxation of all the muscles in one's face, neck, nape, shoulders, the firm maintenance of one's diaphragm, will all help in facilitating the inhalation and projection of breath, which will then become sound, a clear and pure singing. It is not only the brain and mind that benefits marvellously from the simple and scientific singing exercises indicated here; the entire body receives many beneficial effects from this. The pituitary, thyroid and other glands are massaged and revitalised and, and by extension and relation, the whole organism is awakened and "tuned".
II. ---- STANDING POSITION. ---- Spinal column straight, back arched, shoulders well in place, body supple. The series of vowels for singing indicated above under letters
a, b, c, d, e, f,
are to be sung standing with chest flexed, as follows :
Place hands on each side of the face, insert thumbs behind ears, with hands behind the auricles, as though to hear better. Inhalation of breath with rapid puffs (see preliminary chapter) and during this time leaning the top of the body forward by bending the back, without however losing the straightness of back and nape. The knees must not be bent. When the body is at a right-angle, straighten up the chest slowly, intoning the vowels in accordance with the methods indicated above, as wished.
III. ---- KNEELING POSITION. ---- This exercise in a kneeling position, which is of particular value from the point of view of the posture and strength of the spinal column, and normalisation of the internal organs which it helps to return to a correct position and volume, is to be carried out alternately on both knees.
Left knee on ground, right knee at right angles.
Intonation of vowels in accordance with methods
a, b, c, d, e, f,
as wished, varying the positions of arms and hands as follows :
Hands clasped, holding the top of the right knee; breathe in, lower the chest until the forehead is placed on the backs of the clasped hands; sing the vowels keeping the forehead inclined, breathe in while rising.
2° Chest leaning forwards, right shoulder leaning on right knee; the hands must be placed flat on the ground, on each side of the right foot, fingers pointing outwards. Breathe in again before inclining the chest, and sing the vowels during the pause; breathe in a gain while rising.
3° Interlink the fingers and place the hands, with palms flat, on the ground, in front of the right foot. Breathe in before inclining the chest, sing while keeping the posture, breathe in while rising.
4° Incline the chest, interlink fingers in the same way, but place palms flat behind the right foot; breathe in, sing, and get your breath back while raising the chest.
This exercise continues with the same inclinations of chest and position of hands, right knee on ground.
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