Am I a bad colleague?

In this blog, I would like to share a certain situation with you, in order to start a discussion and maybe find the beginning of a solution. This situation is not THE problem, but it illustrates a bigger problem that I don’t know how to handle. I have taken some action, but I don’t know whether I took the right decision by doing so. I’m hoping that this blog will result in an open discussion between voice teachers, vocal coaches, voice students (yes, them too!) and everybody else that thinks (s)he can contribute in a constructive way.

The discussion is already going on with quite a lot of people, but very privately, and I think that has to change. If we strongly feel that something wrong is happening, we have the right to speak up and try to do something about it.

Before I start to explain the situation, I’d like to state that this is my personal story, opinion and my emotions. I’m not acting as the vice president of Evta-Be (Belgian association of voice teachers), nor member of the council of EVTA (European Voice Teachers Association), even though I started a conversation on this within these associations. Because in my opinion, we need to take action on national and preferably also international level.

Last week, I have posted this on Facebook.

FB

I think you get the point. There is a “vocal coach” in my country that I’m not a big fan of, to put it nicely. I didn’t use the name of the coach, but since this post, I have been receiving a lot of private messages from colleagues, asking who I was talking about. And most of them had already figured it out, as they know the situation and share my opinion. This has been going on for years.

Normally, in a situation like this, I turn to the idea that every voice student is responsible for finding a good teacher / coach. With that I mean somebody with an education, knowledge and skills. The voice student also has to remain critical and true to his / her intuition. If it doesn’t work, if it hurts the voice, if the coach is pointing you in another direction than what you need,… then you have to find another coach. But this coach works with a lot of young voices. These children don’t have the ability to be critical yet. So it is very hard for me to keep my mouth shut. Bad voice lessons can not only hurt a person in a physical way. Messing with a voice is messing with a soul. Yes, I admit to the fact that I’m speaking from personal experience 🙂

So. Who is this person? I am still not using her name, but I realize that describing her in such a detailed way makes it pretty clear who I am talking about. I know this is dangerous for so many reasons. But I decided to do it anyway, for the sake of the open discussion. Even though I am putting my own reputation on the line by doing this. Hence the title. Here we go.

This person writes in her biography that she holds a master in music, which is true. But she writes it in such a way, so that the person reading it, thinks she holds a master in voice. She does not. She has a master degree in producing. As far as I know, her only voice education is local private singing lessons. Yes, she has a diploma of a 1 year teacher training. Mind you, this training consists of general pedagogy, not vocal pedagogy. Nevertheless, she calls herself “master vocal coach”. Actually, I have noticed that she has dropped the “master” on one particular social network since my post, so I guess that she agrees on the fact that this term does not correspond to the truth.

As far as I know, she is not a member of any voice association. She does not go to voice conferences, focused on voice pedagogy and / or voice science, nor has she an education in these fields. Nevertheless, she has developed her own method on voice and written 2 books on it. She has admitted to one of my colleagues that she has read several books on voice methods – which does not mean that she has educated herself in these methods – and has made her own synthesis of it. She also trains people to be “authorised coaches” of her method.

She consistently claims that she runs the biggest voice institute of Belgium. As far as I know, she only teaches in Flanders, not in Wallonia. Belgium is Flanders + Wallonia. Recently, she has opened a “vocal clinic”. Yes. She is adding a medical touch to her voice studio. Cooperating with a speech therapist is great. Training yourself in massaging is great (She doesn’t specify how many hours and which massage therapy. But the school she went to offers mainly cosmetic massages). Doing a 10 hour training on kinesiotaping is great. Calling your voice studio a vocal clinic and actually “treating” people yourself is something else.

And then, last week, I found out that she is presenting research on her method at an important voice conference. When I read further into it, I found out that this is how she describes herself in her bio for that conference: “… is considered one of the Belgium’s leading top vocal coaches and a respected vocal expert …”. I kind of… Errr… Well… I exploded.

In my opinion, this is how you do research:

  1. You start with a question / hypothesis.
  2. You research this thoroughly according to the standards of good research (If you want to read more on this, click here.)
  3. If you don’t have the necessary background, you cooperate with people that do.
  4. You take the time to process the data and come to a conclusion.
  5. You present that conclusion to your peers by writing an article and / or book / giving a lecture to your peers at a conference / …

This is the timeline of this person:

  1. 2012: She wrote a book on a method she has developed herself, based on private singing lessons and reading books on other methods.
  2. 2015: She wrote another book on this method.
  3. First half of 2017: She handed in an abstract on the research on her method, in order to present it at an international conference.
  4. July 2017: She actually started the research by making MRI scans.
  5. August 2017: Presenting this research.

Did you notice the time frame? I don’t think that writing 2 books on something and then researching that stuff is the way to go. An then there’s the fact that here is only one month between making the scans and presenting the whole shabam? Ow yeah.

She has made MRI scans of twang and belting, among others things. By now, the vocal world knows what twang and belting are, what they mean and how to use them. They have been researched and studied for decades. This coach has integrated them in her method in a way that shows that she doesn’t understand these terms. On top of that, she calls them vocal effects in the same category of distortion and growl. This makes absolutely no sense.

The success of this persons seems to grow bigger and bigger, as her PR is VERY good. And yes, she also managed to get herself hired as the vocal coach of a TV show. Another reason why this can go on, is that many vocal coaches keep their mouths shut, as they don’t want to be the one that gossips and slanders colleagues. While posting on Facebook, I felt so many emotions: Guilt, fear, shame,… But even so, I didn’t keep my mouth shut. I just HAD to post it. The result of us keeping our mouths shut is, to put it bluntly, that a lot of clients of this coach are paying good money for a lot of glittery blabla, while losing time in their vocal growth, and even getting hurt.

I have shared this story with an ENT specialist that I work together with and respect very much. I wanted her opinion on this, as the profession of a voice teacher and vocal coach is not protected. Anybody can use this name. The profession of a doctor is protected. I was thinking of an ethical code, but she brought up a great idea: A certificate, created by an organization / association that is acclaimed as an authority on the subject. She made the comparison with the profession of managers. Nowadays, in Belgium, the certificate of Vlerick Management School is much wanted, as it stands or quality.

As I have represented Belgium at the council meeting of EVTA (European Voice Teachers Association) being the vice president of Evta-Be (Belgian association of voice teachers), I decided to bring the topic up during the meeting, obviously without using the name. It has been incorporated in a brainstorm session, together with other interesting topics. Going to this meeting, I remembered that the associations of voice teachers in Germany and the UK have great initiatives that can be part of the solution. I even wrote a report on it in my blog on Eurovox 2015. Scroll to FRIDAY JUNE 19TH, Pathways: A new teacher training course in the UK & Continuing education opportunities for singing teachers in Germany.

Why not a European initiative like this? Yes, it’s a huge thing to set up. And we are all volunteers in these associations. We don’t get paid and work during our spare time. Budgets are extremely limited. Maybe we can apply for European funding? Are there other ways to find the money / support?

After sharing this story with you, I’d like to start this discussion with these questions.

  • How do we protect the people that might be hurt from people like this, especially the younger ones? How do we “spread the word” without hurting our own reputation?
  • Do you like the ideas of an ethical code and a certificate? Do you have another idea on how the national and international associations could contribute to solving the problem that the profession of voice teacher and vocal coach is not protected?
  • How do we handle situations like this personally? Do you think I have handled this wrongly? Should I have kept my mouth shut? Am I a bad colleague? Yes, I’m asking this round of questions, because I’m having a lot of emotions on my actions. Guilt, fear, insecurity,… I worry about my own reputation and the one of the associations I am board / council member of. And it might surprise you, but I also worry about this person, now that I have started all this. I know that I have hurt her. She must be so angry, sad, insecure,… And I am sorry for that. But is that a reason to remain silent?
  • Is my information on this person incorrect? This is an important one. If anything I have written is wrong, please tell me! I don’t want to claim something that is not true. It’s bad enough that I’m doing this. Doing this with wrong information would be so much worse…

Please, reply with your real name, function, and evt. your training.

UPDATE 05/08/2017, 10h00, half an hour after making this blog public:
I am currently in Stockholm at ICVT, the International Congress of Voice Teachers. Johan Sundberg, the GOD of vocal science, just advocated for solving the problem that anybody can call himself a voice teacher… It was difficult not to shout “Hoorah!” 🙂

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UPDATE 06/08/2017:
Apparently, she is not only performing, but also training her employees to perform kinesiotaping and manual facilitation of the larynx (MFL). She herself has had 10 hours of kinesiotaping. That’s it. While kinesiotaping can be very dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. Taping 1 mm wrong and you can harm a person’s voice very badly. I don’t know where she got her training in MFL, but I sure as hell know that she doesn’t have the background in order to safely pass the method on to other people. The more I know, the more the word ‘dangerous’ comes to my mind. Brrr…

UPDATE 09/08/2017:
In the meanwhile, this blog has been read nearly 600 times. I still get a lot of private messages of colleagues that are happy that I have posted this and people are discussing this non-publicly. Unfortunately, the typical Flemish reaction is the ostrich-kind 🙂 There are not a lot of replies to this post. But I get it. It is not easy to speak up when your own reputation might be harmed. People might call you jealous. But that’s not the word. The right word is indignant. We have the right to be indignant about this.

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15 thoughts on “Am I a bad colleague?

  1. Jimmy Colman - master in music production, master in singing (pop/jazz) says:

    Everybody has the right – my own opinion – to open his own business and to market his/her business in its best possible way. However: not without practic knowledge. I would never go to a dentist with my backptoblems, if you know what I mean. Therefor, what you propose to do is something in which I believe, there have to be criteria in order to give people the correct information about what they want to learn. The persoon that you are referring to is indeed someone without any academical degree concerning vocals. But which upsets me most is that she hires so-called good vocal coaches who instruct her method (what method? It’s copy paste of a lot of books together…) to other children and unknowing people who believe in that method. That is truly upsetting because lots of her former pupils already contacted me about what they get instructed and it is NOT on point. Also, if you pay more you can follow lessons from her, if you pay less you get a “(schooled?) teacher” who doesn’t pay attention to the quality of the voice but only listens to how many sessions will be followed. (Money talks…). They also give the chance to perform and to record that performance (in a studio, in which she and her husband are in fact really schooled). But…only for those who pay, more. That’s her business I know, but a lot of disappointed pupils turned to me having me listen to some horrible performances, asking me why they weren’t asked. It stunned me because I listened to their stories and they were kind of heart broken. That is not a way to motivate people into singing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. N. Dierickx says:

    Interesting discussion in the world of (vocal) coaching. Our profession is not a protected one. Therefore there are a lot of unqualified coaches out there. I’m not saying they are bad persons or even bad teachers, but they don’t have any pedagogical background.
    Still no problem there – as long as they don’t claim to have one. But having no intention to improve by getting into other people’s scientific research and having no education in any method, makes me wonder why they even want to do it and – more importantly – whether they have the best intentions for their singers.
    Combine this with a lot of claims like “I’m a CVT-teacher” (knowing very well you only read the book and didn’t even follow a masterclass) or “I’m a master” (yes, but in what?) or “I have been coaching The Voice” (No you haven’t. You’ve been coaching candidates and I guess every vocal coach in Belgium has) or the worst one I’ve ever heard: “I’m qualified vocal coach” (How? You never even took singing lessons!).
    None of these claims are really untrue (except the last one – imho). But for a singer looking for a vocal coach, they are very confusing. I still think the responsibility lies with the singer. Choose wisely and dare to change coach.
    Other than that, a lot of coaches offer an education to become a teacher. What makes them an expert? What method are they teaching and how are they teaching it?

    In my case I’m not referring to one specific situation, but to many. I suggest we take an example from the burn-out coaches, as I just read this article: http://www.hln.be/hln/nl/33/Health/article/detail/3225552/2017/08/05/Burn-out-Dat-is-dan-800-euro-hoe-tuchtcommissie-patienten-moet-beschermen-tegen-charlatans.dhtml
    Or take a look at the herbalists, they are also trying to make their profession a protected one (yay me!).

    We are talking about vocal health, which might seem stupid to some, but imagine losing your voice using the wrong speaking or singing technique. Imagine having to absolutely shut up for a few weeks. I’ve been there and I don’t recommend it. I’ve been very hoarse due to bad coaching. I’ve been a frustrated bitch due to bad coaching. You want to be a hoarse, frustrated bitch?
    We are also dealing with health and sometimes patients. Or if we don’t do our job correctly, we create patients. Maybe it’s a good idea to involve ENT-specialists?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Katleen Van den Bossche says:

    I have worked for this person and can confirm what Jimmy has to say: it’s all about the money, in my opinion.
    She used to attract professional vocal coaches and then pay them one third of what she was making, simply because she “invented the technique and therefore was the expert”. As a result, no self-respecting vocal coach/professional singer wants to work for her anymore and she now has people working for her who are her former students. These people are not professional singers, are still very young and inexperienced and believe everything they are taught because, well, they don’t know any better. I had to teach EVERY student that came into my class the same basic excercises. When I used my own experience and expertise and concluded that someone didn’t need beginner excercises but proper coaching because they had already reached a certain level, she told me I was obligated to teach “her way”. I’m glad Sarah brought this up because this bothered me when I was working for her (which was a few years ago). She has a degree in producing, not in singing. I do, and even I would never dare to describe myself as “one of the top vocal coaches of Belgium and vocal expert”. Sadly, this kind of sales talk works good on people who know nothing about the subject and are just looking for a good vocal coach.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pieter Van Hecke says:

    Just so we’re clear and to understand where I’m coming from: I’m a guy that went to law school, was a jurist for the government and is now a selfemployed plumber, working together with other technicians that want to keep quality on the highest shelf. I got my credentials for plumbing taking evening classes and working during holidays, weekends etc.

    I know for a fact this “problem” isn’t exclusive to your field of intrest/work. I think I do a pretty good job without the normal career track or age / experience and I see a lot of people getting ripped off by professionals that should have all the knowledge and experience and yet really don’t care to much about doing a good job (rather than making a great living for themselves) or just aren’t up for the job.

    The way I understand this :
    – some people (claim they) try to help other people, but aren’t up for the task
    – some people use the term coach (in this case voice coach or teacher) to make clear what it is they are trying to do without giving much thought to what it all entails before you would allow yourself to use the term
    – some people tend to succeed in getting a lot of attention (and clients) by how they go about their marketing. Some are very focussed on making money and/or being succesful as if it were a goal on itself
    – sometimes people make claims in their marketing that actually don’t mean anything but sound good. Sometimes they make claims that aren’t in accordance with reality

    Am I correct when I say that the things listed above are considered “a problem” and you want to “solve” them?

    I believe (which is very debatable) that
    – perfection is an illusion (so good luck on solving anything and getting rid of everything you don’t find desirable)
    – different people look for different things in life and I dare to question that everybody is looking for what you are trying to achieve. Maybe some people are happy with the “progress” they make. Maybe ignorance is bliss sometimes. (fyi, I’m the guy that doesn’t think there is a right or wrong answer to most things)

    Here are some thoughts i have on this:
    – I presume you will never be able to protect everyone (Not even the majority if you ask me), surely not in the short run, and not in a way you are proposing now. That shouldn’t try to stop you from trying to get your or industry standards up, or going for what you consider important, oh no, don’t get me wrong on that. It just seem like you really want her to stop (it) now and I’m not sure that is a wise (in your own intrest) thing to set your mind to. I also question how you are willing to stop her. More on that below.

    I’m also not sure that everybody wants or needs to be protected. While I find it very honorable what your intention is, I’m not sure if people need saving or protection or if so, to what degree. How do we find a balance it with letting people figure it out for themselves. How do we balance this with people being able to find their own way in life (trainee and coach alike)?

    – How do you make sure that industry standards and standard practices don’t become a (too) rigid gospel that gets detached from reality. Because anybody claiming they know how it should be done is at the same time in danger (possibly) of falling for what you are trying to prevent.
    Getting the word out on good practices is the best thing that can be done if you ask me as long as no single practise becomes a gospel. As long as any current information is seen as temporary, to be revised, under construction, trying to handle things to the best of our abilities…
    Helping people research, being critical and aware…

    – How do we make sure that we find a balance between keeping up with current discoveries and not pushing the rat race even harder on everbody. Don’t get me wrong, this is coming from a guy that loves to go to evening seminars and info sessions, but also hates something being obligated and strict (If you don’t get 6 points each year, you will lose your ability to use a screwdriver) and most of the time missing the point. I would urge you to really think through on effects / effectiveness. I lack the information to be more specific or helpful. For that I’m sorry.

    – I think an ethical code is nice on paper but doesn’t do much in reality. “Sure I agree” – Just like most laws, if we don’t need the judicial system, they might as well not exist and we can do whatever we want. It all depends on the people themselves.
    I think this is a much bigger problem than stopping malpractise. Why are people not (intrinsically) focussed on delivering good quality. Will you be able to influence or change a lot of the factors that influence this? I’m not hopeful, but again, please prove me wrong and help me gain hope to make change in other lines of work.

    – a certificate will make it more expensive and the increased difficulty could have a reverse or adverse effect. You might scare off a few very skilled people that don’t like this implementation or the climb to be able to do anything at all.
    I’m not saying you shouldn’t try or do anything. I’m just trying to make you choose very wisely what effort is worth the reward.

    -I should note that training or certificates will no longer be needed to start your business here in Belgium for profession where you used to be obligated to prove your skills before you could start out. (Eu- legislation, they are looking for other ways to control quality – maybe find some inspiration there?)

    In my line of work i can sefely say: certificates don’t do much for quality and cost a lot. There will probably always be people that just don’t agree with you on what is important. Do we even want to give them the attention they are usually getting?
    Also, the law is written by people that are not doing the actual work and are not always promoting general intrests.

    On the personal issue, I think that for her and her practise not being the problem, it is getting a whole lot of attention in this blog. Your “emotional” reaction on facebook being one thing. Adding a bunch (and a whole lot of them for that matter) of details here is another.
    I think this should be done with even more diligence and attention for dignity. I think I would have tried to see where personal contact would have led to and even if that wasn’t succesful, I don’t think I would want it to get this personal. (again, this is personal preference, I don’t know what the right answer is)

    That said, I completely understand and I’m not “without sin” (far from it). However, you’re asking on what I think “should” be done. Well, that is keeping in mind that everybody is doing their best and giving the benefit of the doubt as much as possible, even if what they do is completely opposed to how you would handle it. That’s not the feeling I get here.
    I’m totally not trying to blame you or feel guilty, since I can perfectly see myself doing this (although I wouldn’t be to happy about it either) and I don’t think blame and shame are usefull. I can understand your concerns, but I wouldn’t handle it this way if I had those concerns.

    That said, I admire you for actually doing this and trying while unsure of it being a good / the best solution, given that I have some troubles with other coaching practices (personal and business development) and my looking for the best take on it is keeping me in the analysis paralysis stage and not “doing anything about it”. So who’s to say what’s the right way and the right take on this. Is there any?

    Very interested to see how this turns out.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pieter Van Malderen says:

    Excellent article and more than necessary these times to expose frauds for what they are: Frauds! There is no field of science, education.. that doesn’t have it’s fraudulent ‘alternatives’ that try to pray on the innocent like parasites do. Especially in medicine and education this is a problem and it’s getting worse over time in my opinion. People need to be protected for themselves too often when it comes to making choices where they themselves have no expertise (yet). I wish you all the best and applaud you standing op against vocal-quackery. Just one little remark. You write: “Doing a 10 hour training on kinesiotaping is great”. Well, it is not :-). Kinesiotaping is one of so many forms of pseudscientific quackery: check https://sciencebasedmedicine.org/olympic-pseudoscience/ ea – cheers p

    Like

  6. Wim Van den bossche says:

    Are you a bad colleague? YES YOU ARE!
    Ik schrijf dit in het Nederlands omdat het hier tenslotte gaat over wat ik noem, platvloerse, beschamende concurrentievoering in Vlaanderen.

    Bij het lezen van deze blog bloedt mijn hart en gaat mijn gezondheid er dus op achteruit. Moet ik dan stoppen om mijn digitale stem te gebruiken en te reageren op deze blog? Moeten we ons op zulke beschamende manier monddood laten maken?
    Neen! Want DIT verdient niemand.

    Is het in deze trend nog nuttig om de vraag te stellen wat professionalisme is?

    Na uitgebreid research over dit topic kan ik alleen tot de conclusie komen dat reeds bestaande theorieën en methodes hun oorsprong hebben gevonden in research en ervaringen van gepassioneerde zangers, componisten, producers, … en die alles wilden delen met anderen. Die processen zijn, en ik citeer, “still ongoing”, wat m.i. wil zeggen dat ze een goede basis/fundering zijn om van daaruit verder te gaan.
    Vanuit dit perspectief ben ik er dan ook van overtuigd dat iemand met de nodige bagage aan opleiding, research, workshops, persoonlijke ervaring en een netwerk aan specialisten zoals nko-artsen en logopedisten (professionelen die dagelijks therapie en advies geven op gebied van spraak, taal, stem en gehoor) zelfs een betere coach kan zijn dan menig anderen.

    Ben je dus een slechte collega en/of gewoon een slechte verliezer?
    YES YOU ARE!

    Like

    • singsingsarah says:

      Hi Wim, thank you for your reply.

      First of all, I’d like to ask you who you are. A singer? A vocal coach? A voice researcher? Somebody that knows this coach personally? This would help a lot to put your opinion in the right perspective.

      You say that you have researched this topic thoroughly. Might I ask how?

      Yes, I agree that voice science, pedagogy, methodology,… is still ongoing. We are standing on the shoulders of the giants of the past.

      I also agree that somebody with the right education, background, experience and network can be a very good coach. The problem here is that this is not present in this particular case, but that the coach claims that it is. Please, correct me if I’m wrong. I’m willing to admit mistakes, if I would have made them. But I’m quite sure that I’m not wrong.

      I suspect that the ENT specialist that you are referring too is the same that has proofread one of the books of this coach. You are correct, this is a very good ENT specialist and I even work together with her too. The problem is that most ENT specialists don’t have any knowledge on voice pedagogy and methodology. They know a lot about the anatomy, physiology and pathologies of the voice. These are very different things. The book should have been proofread by peers. That means voice teachers and vocal coaches with the necessary background. As far as I know, this has not happened. Again, please, correct me if I’m wrong.

      You say that I’m a bad loser. Talking about winners and losers means that you believe that there’s a competition going on between vocal coaches. This is not the way I look at my job.

      You probably think that I’m jealous. That’s quite impossible. I work with entirely different clientele. This coach mainly focuses on (young) children. I don’t work with children, as that requires a very specific approach, which I’m not specialized in. I always refer children to colleagues with the necessary background and methodology.

      Maybe you think that I’m jealous because she is presenting her research at a voice conference at the end of this month? Actually, I’m performing research myself since 2012. This research focuses on methods and subjects that I am educated in. I have presented this research successfully at numerous conferences and other occasions. I’m also selected to present at the particular conference at the end of this month, but I decided not to accept the invitation nor attend the conference, for reasons that I will not go further into at the time. You can read all about my research and even see the presentations here: https://singsingscience.wordpress.com/

      Or do you think I am jealous because she has published 2 books? For years now, people tell me that I should write a book. I don’t want to do that, as I don’t feel that I have something new to offer. I work with knowledge, skills and experiences that I have attained at educations, conferences and from books and methods that already exist. If you would be interested, you can read my CV here: https://singsingsarah.wordpress.com/sarah-algoet-cv/
      Yes, I make my own mixture and I use my own accents, but I don’t claim that I have invented something new.

      So no, I’m not jealous or a bad loser. I’m a vocal coach that is extremely worried about the young voices that this coach is working with. This is a dangerous field. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can harm a person very badly. Adults can intuitively feel that this coach is not what they need. But children are very vulnerable and I believe that we are obliged to protect them from people like this coach.

      Yes, I know that I’m making this very personal. I know that I’m attacking her. If this case would not be one dangerous and outrageous thing after the other, I would not do so. I choose to open my mouth. I choose to put my own reputation on the line. I choose to suffer the consequences. Keeping my mouth shut is just not an option. This has already gone too far.

      Like

  7. Wim Van den bossche says:

    Beste Sarah,

    Bij deze bevestig je dus mijn vermoeden dat dit een persoonlijke vete betreft met een andere coach in jullie sector.

    Ik heb de technieken en de daaraan verbonden personen opgezocht. Ben ik dan een Researcher? Waarschijnlijk niet, maar misschien moet ik mij inderdaad niet mengen in jullie ‘open discussie’ Misschien is dit enkel gericht naar uw ‘Cliënteel’ zoals je uw studenten zo mooi noemt.

    Ik hoop alleen maar dat onze kinderen binnenkort nog een liedje aan de vlaggenmast van de Chiro of scouts mogen zingen, zodat ze hun jonge stem niet misbruiken!

    Like

  8. Janis says:

    Hoi Sarah.
    Ik heb je blog gelezen. Interessant is het zeker.
    Mijn vraag naar jou, waarom ga je niet met haar in gesprek? Of is dat al gebeurd? Want ik vind dit best goede argumenten… Misschien komt er wat uit,en dan is het geen Vlaamse manier van aanpakken… Snap je wat ik bedoel? Want ik weet dat je niet jaloers bent of wat dan ook want jouw ding draait prima zoals dat jij dat zou willen volgens mij. Maar ja, het komt dan toch over als een beetje….naar om zo over iemand te praten….snap je?

    2e ding: ik heb conservatorium Tilburg gedaan en heb daar extra vakken didactiek gedaan. Wat betekent dat ik mijn 1e 2 jaar van mijn opleiding de theoretische kant van vocal technique heb gekregen door mijn docenten die die cursussen hebben gevolgd daarna heb ik een minor gedaan in mijn 3e en 4e jaar die ook ging rond vocaltechnique en vocal pedagogie.
    Ik kan je vertellen dat ik heel veel info heb gekregen, stage heb gelopen bij logopedisten bij officiële muziekacademies en ook veel observaties heb gedaan en dit buiten mijn uitvoerende hoofd opleiding.
    Onze school raadt ons aan om na onze opleiding naar cursussen in Duitsland Engeland en Nederland te blijven gaan ivm EVTS en CVT enzovoort.
    Ik heb dit op mijn diploma staan dat dit mijn minor is… maar officieel voor jou dus (als ik het goed begrijp) geen vocalcoach…?
    Maar hoe wil je dat dan aanpakken want ik vind wel dat ik er toch al een beetje verstand van heb. Waarschijnlijk niet zoveel als jij, aangezien dit je hoofd aan is (?) En je lijkt me heel gepassioneerd,wat een goed ding is!
    Maar dat is een beetje mijn vraag naar jou.

    Vriendelijke groet
    Janis

    Liked by 1 person

    • singsingsarah says:

      Hi Janis,

      I’ll reply in English, as this blog is going around the world 🙂

      Unfortunately, I did not succeed in having a personal conversation with her, I did speak with her husband.

      I do not claim to have the definition of “a vocal coach”. I am not in a place to judge you and your background at all. What I’m doing here, is advocating for open and honest communication about our background. This coach is lying about her background AND working with children AND adding a clinical aura around her practice. That is just one outrageous thing after the other. This is why I decided to open my mouth. This has to be stopped, period.

      One of my colleagues has moot the idea of a register, and I like that. So, if you would have any other suggestion on how we could protect the profession of “vocal coaches”, shoot 🙂

      Like

  9. Stav says:

    Oh dear, where to begin?
    First of all, I feel your frustration and need to warn others, as it does seem dangerous. In my area (Israel) there are so few certified/ well-educated teachers, that singers don’t usually understand the difference and need for education. Many young teachers take shortcuts- short courses and webinars- so they have more knowledge and can call themselves educated. They even charge the same as authorized teachers…
    But for calling them off, I’m not sure how we SHOULD handle this, it’s problematic as you said.
    I was wondering while reading it all: did you approach this teacher? did you ever talked or even confronted her about it?

    Like

    • singsingsarah says:

      Hi Stav!
      Thank you for your answer.
      In the beginning of august (before this blog), I have had a phone conversation with her husband. I asked to speak to her directly, but he refused.

      Like

      • ndierickx says:

        Maybe another subject to think about is: it’s not because you are educated, that you are a good coach. I sometimes got great grades in an education, but a day after, I forgot what the exam was about.
        Again, this does not only apply to vocal coaching.

        Like

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