The other day I tried a little change-up in my vocal warmups that yielded great results.
I was thinking over how one of my most important priorities in vocalizing is to get the ensemble to hear each other and sync up, particularly with regard to vowel placement.
As we sang one of my regular exercises, I repeatedly asked them to take 10 seconds and find someone they don’t usually stand near. They sang in close proximity, focusing on listening and matching.
Within three switches, their vowels became much more in sync and the resultant ensemble sound was more mature, focused, and lovely.
We tend to adjust standing arrangements only after we’ve learned the music (for obvious reasons), but why not find opportunities to have cross pollination as early as possible in the rehearsal process?