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French coaching


I advise singers how to pronounce, project and inflect the French language in their songs, opera arias or declamed texts.


As with all languages, we cannot sing French as we speak it.

Like poets and orators, classical singers follow the high language rules set by the French Academy, which differ from those created by usage. Of course, these rules changed across the centuries, so the French text of a 17th century song will have a different character from that of a late 19th century opera.

But the main difficulty is that there are so many exceptions to the rules that it is pretty much impossible for anyone, even a native, to try and sing this language without reading treatises of pronounciation.

They are fascinating, but when you have an audition coming up at short notice (or if that kind of reading doesn't appeal...)  you may prefer to go to someone who has read them for you!

I will help you produce pure vowels with the right throat openness for your voice to be free, will show you where you can use the "liaisons" between words, and how you can stress the text and shape the sentences meaningfully.

I coach individuals and groups. Recent work includes acting as French adviser in Midsummer Opera's production of Massenet's Werther.


Individuals: £30/hour ; £22 for students

Companies: £60 for a three-hour service




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