Frequently Asked Questions - Subject Areas (Click a subject area tab below)

How easy should singing feel?  You should have the ability to sing from the bottom to the extreme top of your vocal range, with a smooth, controlled, even feel to your voice. Also, you need to eliminate any "breaks" in your voice, where you "flip" or sing in different sounding voices in your lower and upper ranges. 

You should keep the same comfortable feel in your voice that you have when you speak, so you don't try to "reach" for high notes, or try to push out high notes. As this balance is produced in your voice, you are able to sing with greater power throughout your entire range, without strain, and without wearing out your voice. 
Will this method of vocal study also help strengthen my speaking voice? Absolutely! In fact, many singers find that bad habits in their speaking voices are putting undue stress and strain on the way they sing. You cannot improve your singing voice without the benefit of also improving the natural ease and fullness of your speaking voice. This is why so many executives needing help with their professional speaking voices study this approach with me.
When studying voice, how long does it take to sing high notes easily?  Immediately. Good vocal technique should involve no strain in the production of tone anywhere in your range. A teacher must quickly begin to vocalize you right on up and down through your extreme ranges to ensure that you don't get "stuck" in any one part of your range.
Can a student be too old or too young to benefit from studying voice?  First of all, a student can never be too old to improve their voice through study. Just as with any age, you can learn to strengthen and control the muscles involved in singing. If you are singing with good technique, your voice will only improve as you get older. As far as younger students go, I suggest that students should be old enough to maintain focus through a half hour vocal lesson, and be able to practice at least 10-20 minutes per day.
Is correct singing really as relaxed and easy on my voice as talking? Yes! When your are talking at a comfortable conversation level, without interference from the muscles in your neck, throat or jaw, you are also on the road to a powerful, full, free singing voice.
Is studying voice lessons over the internet on Skype as effective as the
in-studio lessons?
Yes. In fact, some of my local students study via Skype even though they could easily come to the studio in person. They like the convenience of taking the lesson at home, and they can still get a recorded version of the lesson so they can practice what we did in the lesson. There are those who prefer in-studio lessons. It's just a personal preference. Give it a try!
Testimonials about Online Lessons:

...about online lessons
“I perform regularly both here in the United States and in Cambodia.  It’s nice to be able to get my lesson time in with Eric whether I’m in the states or out of the country. It's like having a vocal coach who travels with me!” - Amara Chhin, singer/actress

...about online lessons "I love taking my lessons over the internet! Before my first web session with Eric, I was afraid that the lesson might be less productive online, but I was wrong. Eric did more to improve my voice in the first 10 minutes than any teacher had in 2 or 3 lessons."   - Katrina Boothe, Winnipeg, MB Canada

...about online lessons "Okay. That's it. I'm never driving to another voice lesson again! The online private lessons are just as good, but I don't have to fight traffic! - Joe Longue, Atlanta, Georgia

...about online lessons "A few weeks ago I was in Colorado on a ski trip.  I didn't want to miss my lesson during the trip, so I just took an online lesson.  After skiing that day, I was back in my room at the lodge with my laptop, taking my lesson.  It works very well." - Danielle McVaugh, Houston TX 
Are the training materials as effective as private lessons? The discs and downloads were made to be highly effective, helping you "train yourself" to sing with greater freedom, range, power and control. Of course it's even more helpful to work with someone who really knows how to teach this technique. Studying privately, even occasionally, can keep you on the most direct path to meeting your goals while working through the program material.
How does purchasing the downloads work? Purchasing a download starts just like purchasing the discs, but at the end of the transaction, you are given a link to click. When you click the link, the vocal training material automatically downloads (in the form up a .zip file) to your computer's download folder. Open up the .zip file and you can immediately get started with your training!
Are the training products guaranteed? Absolutely! If the training material doesn't help you, then I don't want your money! Here is the info from the page on the guarantee:

The training material works… I personally guarantee it! 

Put in some regular practice time with the material, and I know you'll excel. 

You have up to 6 full months to work with the program. If your voice doesn't improve allot, and you're not happy with the material, return it and I'll give you a full refund. It's that simple!

** The only refund exception is for any personal private or group lesson time included in any package, but that's it. **

First of all, the guarantee definitely includes any and all training material included with ANY purchase. Lesson time included with any package is not considered training material. (Training material includes any discs, downloads or online access.) Any lesson time included with a purchased program package will be deducted from the refund amount at the current lesson rate. I've got a full 48 hour cancelation policy, so just let me know ahead of that so we can reschedule if we need to. 

That being said, I'm confident you're going to going to find the program exciting and powerful. Getting you to the next level is my goal and the focus of the programs I developed.
Testimonials about Vocal Training Products:

…about the Perfect Vibrato Training Program
Dear Eric, I just had to write and say thank you!!!!! On a whim, I ordered your set of CDs on developing vibrato this spring, and to my great surprise and joy, they worked!!
It took about 3 weeks of daily exercises for me to sense a small vibrato, and now, 7 weeks into it, I can “get it” almost immediately when I start to sing. I’m floored. I thought for sure I was one of the 1% of human beings whose vocal chords would never vibrate.  The breakthrough for me was to figure out where exactly the vibrato is coming from — I never knew — and your vocal exercises helped pinpoint that. Especially the half-tone wobble and the “Oh No!” exercise. Those are the two that worked best for me.
I’ve been singing flat for decades (I’m 55), and didn’t like my voice for that reason although I do love to sing. I always told myself that if I could just have vibrato, I’d sing and sing and sing. And that’s exactly what I do now.
I obviously came to the right place when I first started my internet search about developing vibrato, and I couldn’t be happier. This is *huge* for me. Thank you!!!!
Janet Hill Singing like a bird up in northern Minnesota
How do I find a really good voice teacher?  Be sure you are choosing a teacher who understands and can demonstrate superior vocal technique. A voice technique teacher is vitally important, because without the technical ability to sing flexibly and clearly in all parts of your range, you are going to run into vocal limitations or even worse, vocal damage. 

A good voice technique teacher is hard to find. Just because a teacher can play the piano while you follow along, you are not necessarily learning to sing, any better. Also, if the teacher tends to just holler out instructions like "support the tone," "sing from your diaphragm," "lift your soft pallet" and "open you mouth," you know you are likely dealing with a poor teacher. If you don't feel your vocal range, tone and control improving within a few lessons, then work with a better teacher who will help you attain your goals faster. 

Many teachers have poor vocal technique, or they may have nice voices but are rarely successful at showing others how to achieve easily produced vocal power, range and control. Before studying with a teacher, give them a “tryout”. Ask them to demonstrate their vocal ability, showing you how they sing from the very bottom, to the extreme top of their range without strain, or changing from one vocal quality to another at any point. 
I've tried voice lessons before without real results. How Is this approach different?  Many (dare I say, most?) voice teachers do not truly understand and primarily concentrate on teaching vocal technique. Though many try, they often do more to confuse students than to help them. Again, if you don't find a teacher that shows you the way to a more comfortable use of your voice, with more strength and range within just a few lessons, then find another teacher to work with. 
Based on my own gender, should I study with a man or a woman? For a teacher who understands the voice, and who knows how to get results for his or her students, gender doesn't matter one way or the other. In other words, there is no advantage to studying with your own gender if they can't teach both genders extremely and equally well.
I've heard that the best singing teachers are opera singers. Is this important?  Opera is a style of music; it isn't a method of teaching. More important than the singing of any style, including opera, is the ability of a teacher to vocalize a singing student through their entire range, without breaks or strain. Once the voice is free, a teacher should bring a student through ANY style of music the student wishes to do. 

The word "Opera" tends to inspire confidence in students that may well be unfounded. Find a teacher who can help you find your best voice and let you soar within that style. Opera isn't a "better" way to learn singing, anymore than other styles.
Testimonials about lessons:

...about in-Studio lessons "Eric is so enthusiastic about his students' progress! That is very important to me because my voice makes money for me. Being in musical theatre for 27 years, I know proper technique is everything. He has taught me that even at my age and experience, I still have to take care of my voice with proper technique and knowledge. He also showed me that I had a least 4 extra high notes I didn't even know existed for me....Thanks, Eric!!!" - John Gardner, Actor/Singer/Performer, Dallas/Houston, TX 

...about in-Studio lessons "Being a new singer and never having had lessons before, I was apprehensive when I began looking for a voice teacher. Since I wasn't a professional singer, I was worried about finding someone who would be willing to work with me to develop better control of my voice and maximize my abilities. Eric Bruner immediately put me at ease. He explained the process in detail and told me what to expect. His easy-going personality and extensive vocal and musical knowledge were very reassuring as we began to break the old "bad" habits and replace them with proper technique. Almost immediately, I was able to add several steps to my middle range and began to close the gaps between my middle and high ranges. I also felt more power behind the notes and began to feel more confident in my singing." - Pat Davis, Houston, TX

...about in-Studio lessons "I started studying with Eric after two years of minimal progress with another instructor. Within 6 months, I had significantly improved range, power, and flexibility. After 8 months, I was doing a sound check for a church performance. While balancing the voice and instruments, the engineer kept turning my microphone down until he finally switched off his equipment and said "he doesn't need the microphone anymore." Eric helps you improve by giving specific, targeted exercises rather than vague imagery. His direct approach to voice instruction allows you to improve quickly." - George Zener, Houston, TX

...about in-Studio lessons "After my first session with Eric I was very excited about his teaching technique. I was able to see a difference in my vocal range after only a couple of lessons. Eric is wonderful in explaining how you practice each exercise. Now that I have the ability to mix the head and chest voice, I am able to sing higher notes without straining. Thanks Eric!" - Arthurene Walker, Houston, TX

...about in-Studio lessons "I have been in choir all through middle school, high school and some college, but I'd always struggled with the high tenor range and never could seem to hit those notes without being flat or yelling them out. I started to believe that my voice was meant to be baritone and never tenor. After studying with Eric and having to unlearn what I'd been taught in choir throughout my school years, I am now having a lot of fun singing in the high tenor range. I can hit those high notes with ease and not have to struggle or sound like I'm yelling. Last year, I auditioned for the Houston Masterworks Chorus and received an invitation to perform in their tenor section. I am so grateful to have found Eric's teachings and I look forward to more improvement." - Marcos Perez, Houston, TX

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