Music critic Neil McCormick, of The Daily Telegraph, has praised Lewis’s technical skills, writing, “Her mezzo-soprano range allows her to take melodies from luxurious low notes to high-flying falsetto, gliding with elegant power and impressive control through all kinds of fluctuations and modulations.”Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic adds, “Lewis can hit what seems like high belted notes.”
Leona Lewis uses her head register on the high notes and never belts even tho’ it sounds like she is belting because of the sheer power behind it. She actually extremely classically trained and has no need to strain. The secret to her vocal prowess is that she still practises operatic scales on a daily basis.
April 25th 2017 marked the 100th birthday of Ella Fitzgerald, “The First Lady of Song”, also known as the “Queen of Jazz”. Her first performance experience was as a young girl in a tap dance contest. She was overcome with stage fright that she couldn’t move and not knowing what else to do, she started to sing. Much to her surprise, the audience was delighted and applauded wildly.
Ella Fitzgerald was noted for her purity of tone, perfect diction and phrasing and her flawlessly improvised scat singing, with her pure horn-like vocal quality. She had a naturally flawless technique in true Bel Canto form.
Many of the songs written in the Classic Rock music style have melodies that span a few octaves. Very good way to exercise pure falsetto tones combined with pure chest tones to keep the voice healthy and vibrant. It all makes for a smoother passagio (bridge) between the two as well….like a well-oiled machine.
In Katherine Hepburn’s first TV interview in 1973, she spoke of the importance of voice lessons. When Dick Cavett asked her who she studied acting with she spoke about never studying acting at all. She chose to study voice instead and felt that was the turning point in her acting career that put her on the road to success.
She says she was a big flop in one of her first plays Torchbearers “and thought….better go and learn to talk, cause I would get so excited that my voice would shoot way up in the top of my head”
She goes on to say that she was petrified every time she performed, would run out of breath and lose her voice, so she decided to study voice with Francis Robinson Dove, who was the best voice teacher in New York at the time. It was $10 an hour, which was quite expensive at the time, so she wrote and asked her father, who was a very successful surgeon to back her. I wonder if we would have ever heard of Katherine Hepburn the great actress at all, if her father had said “no”.