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Head First
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Denes Striny's international singing career brought him to the major opera houses of the world in leading roles. At the same time, he was evolving his vocal technique in a quest to find his full vocal potential. This book documents his struggles and successes with himself, teachers, coaches, and other singers. Striny, while maintaining his singing career, also had a full studio of singers studying with him in New York City. In this his first book, Striny confronts and explains the universal problem in singing today. This problem is at the center of an important dilemma in the world of opera today-namely, where have all the great operatic voices gone? Striny dissects the problem and offers the solution, which is a return to singing in the "Head Voice," the only true operatic sound. For the past sixty years, the knowledge that there are thirty-two muscles, bones, ligaments, and sinewy masses of tissue located around the larynx led teachers and students to chase this anatomical knowledge in search of answers to vocal theories. However, they have not learned the basic fundamental truth-those who sing in the head voice are the only true operatic voices. The late Birgit Nilsson, international opera legend and long-time friend, mentor, and teacher to Striny, shares her insights with Striny and the reader throughout the book. Head First is a must for teachers, students, professional singers, and opera lovers who will gain valuable insight into the "voice of opera."
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Table of Contents

Part 1 Dedication: In Remembrance (of Birgit Nilsson ) Part 2 Foreword: A Letter from Birgit Nilsson Part 3 Preface Chapter 4 Introduction Part 5 Choices Chapter 6 Head Voice and Chest Voice: Registers and Voices Chapter 7 Breathing-No Big Deal Chapter 8 All the Stuff You Want: Pitch, Text, Musicality, Carrying Power Chapter 9 Vocal Constriction and Health Part 10 Getting There Chapter 11 Bel Canto and Head Voice: What Happened? Chapter 12 The Passaggio: From What? To What? Chapter 13 Finding a Voice Chapter 14 About Teachers Chapter 15 Getting in the Zone Chapter 16 The Final Analysis, Do You Deserve It? Chapter 17 The Learning Process and the Exercises Part 18 Exercises Part 19 Appendix Part 20 Index

About the Author

Denes Striny is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Shaker Mountain Opera. He has sung leading tenor roles in many of the major opera houses in the United States, Europe, Australia, and Japan. His vocal studio is producing some of America's most exciting young singers. His students frequently capture major roles at the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, and other major opera houses throughout the world. For additional information and to order the companion CD to Head First, please visit Denes Striny's website at www.denesstriny.com.

Reviews

WOW! I must say that you have done a fabulous job...A great piece of work. -- Birgit Nilsson, Swedish opera legend, Soprano. (b. 1918 - d.2005) Denes Striny has been my teacher for over fourteen years now, and his incredible teaching has been invaluable in my success performing roles from the bel canto to Berio. -- Lauren Flanigan The book is remarkable, everything you write on the Head Voice is interesting and good. Thanks! -- Christa Ludwig, German opera legend, Mezzo-Soprano I am impressed with the clarity of his thoughts and the wisdom of his ideas. His book is an important addition to the field of vocal pedagogy and it is especially timely today when the art of good sining is limited to so few people. -- Michael Cordovana, Dallas Opera - 25 years, Retired And I am sorry to say...I spoiled what could have been a successful career with wrong ideas...with the assistance of teachers that made that happen. When I read your book, I could...remember what my voice had wanted to do and was able to do when everything felt easy and joyful. Well, it's too late for a career, but it's not too late for searching and (returning) to something that brought so much joy and happiness. -- Rolf Knapper, Hedmark University College I am so excited by the principles that Mr. Striny puts forth in his book that I have incorporated them into my own teaching and am recommending him and his book to everyone who is serious about 'singing smart' and having a long, healthy and prosperous singing career. Finally I can say 'Thank You' for finding the way. -- Carmen Balthrop, Chair, Voice/Opera Division, School of Music, University of Maryland What I've read is always engaging, clearly expressed, and well phrased-a reader wants to read on. You have much to be proud of. -- Peter G. Davis, Music Critic New York Magazine ...passionate and direct. Vocal students and teachers will have much to chew on, and even part-time opera fans will find food for thought. -- Joseph Dalton Albany Times Union Striny neatly encapsulates his directives for singing...the exercises, and Striny's directions, are excellent...What Striny has to say...will resonate with pedagogues who wonder why there are fewer singers with long careers. -- Debra Greschner, Lecturer of Voice at Lamar University in Beaumont, TX National Association Of Teachers Of Singing I consider your book a masterpiece in the genre of vocal literature...Your book should be required reading for all voice students and voice faculties across America. -- Robin Hendrix

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