The Vocal Instrument

First Edition

Sharon Radionoff

Details: 235 pages, Full Color, Softcover, 6" x 9"

ISBN13: 978-1-59756-163-1

© 2008 | Available

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Within the body lie all the elements (anatomy, physiology and the connection between the mind and body) which are needed to produce sound. Anatomy is the structure of what we are made of, while physiology is the function, or how we use our anatomy. Every instrument has a frame. The unique thing about the human vocal instrument is that the body skeleton is the frame. The purpose of this book is to help the voice professional understand this instrument and know how to take care of it. The first half of this book answers the following questions: What is my instrument and how is this put together? How do I play it? And How do I take care of it? The second half of the book defines common problems and discusses how to fix these problems based on the specialization of the voice professional.


"...Offers the unique perspective of musician, music educator, and singing voice specialist. The volume presents an accessible and accurate overview of the voice, and frank advice on how to keep it healthy in a variety of situations."
Debra Greschner, Journal of Singing (2009)

  • Foreword
  • Introduction
  • Preface
  • PART I: The Vocal Instrument
    • Introduction
    • Body
    • Respiration
    • Phonation
    • Resonance
    • Articulation
    • Body/Mind/Spirit Connection
  • 2. HOW DO I “PLAY” IT?
    • Vocal Technique
    • Learning new music
    • Arts Medicine & Professional Voice Care
    • PART II: Common Problems
    • Introduction
    • Giving a lesson
    • Introduction
    • Classroom Teaching
    • Choral Conducting
    • Instrumental Conducting/Directing
    • Introduction
    • Introduction
    • Performance Genres: Classical Music
    • Performance Genres: Commercial Music
    • Performance Genre: Musical Theatre
    • Performance Genre: Theatre

Sharon Radionoff

Dr. Radionoff had early exposure to many kinds of music through church/community choirs, concert/marching band as well as piano study and performance. Her love for music and teaching grew as she studied music in college. Although voice was her main instrument, she continued studies of trombone and piano and performed in recitals, operas, musicals, choirs, bands and orchestras. Upon graduating with her BME from Eastern Michigan University, she became a Middle School/High School band director. During this time, she attended an MENC conference at the University of Michigan where she heard Dr. Robert T. Sataloff lecture on “Care of the Professional Voice.” This one lecture fueled her passion and changed the course of her life and as they say, ‘the rest is history.’ This passion provoked her into knowing not just how to get desired vocal results but what allows these results to occur in the healthiest way. This zeal for voice care continued through her master’s degree study at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and upon graduation she taught a variety of choirs, directed musicals and taught a full studio of voice students at Co-Lin Jr. College and then Southwestern Michigan College. She also directed community and church choirs.

Six years after their initial meeting, Dr. Sataloff invited her to complete a professional fellowship at the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital Arts Medicine Center in Philadelphia, PA. Post fellowship and Ph.D coursework, she became the singing voice specialist at the Texas Voice Center with Dr. C. Richard Stasney. While there she conducted her dissertation research and was awarded her Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1996. She has taught undergraduate and graduate vocal pedagogy, vocal pathways and studio voice students at University of Houston and vocal pedagogy at Rice University. Currently she is Singing Voice Specialist and Director of the Sound Singing Institute as well as being a team member at the Texas Voice Center.

As a Singing Voice Specialist, Dr. Radionoff has a unique viewpoint in the field of Arts Medicine. Her education and experience as both teacher and performer as well as her motivation to know the why and the how, have created a platform of practical knowledge which enables her to empower singers to find healing and fulfillment.

Dr. Radionoff may be contacted at the Sound Singing Institute by phone (713) 960-1648, fax (713) 521-1674, or e-mail: Log on to the website for further information concerning lectures or publications.

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