VOCAL HARMONY & IMPROV
with Tracy Fehr
Penticton Academy of Music
July 4-6, 2012
On July 4, 5 and 6 for two hours a day, the studios at Leir House were resonating with the sounds of voices experimenting with singing. The effect was hypnotic, and one could not help but be drawn in by it. The class was Vocal Harmony & Improv, and this was the sixth year that renowned singer Tracy Fehr was teaching it through the Penticton Academy of Music. While people in the class had some experience with singing -- either from being in a choir or just singing for fun -- no ability to read music was required. The type of instruction was by ear training.
When asked about how she likes teaching this adult class, Fehr is quick to say "I love to see people feel free to explore and try new things in their singing. Especially adults feel vulnerable and afraid to try, for fear they will make a mistake." But this is a supportive environment where "mistakes" are encouraged. It is the best way to learn what works and what doesn't.
Fehr says that sometimes people get so comfortable with each other in these groups that they continue to meet and sing together after the workshop is over. Until recently Fehr was a member of the faculty at the Penticton Academy of Music. She states that although she has now opted to move her private voice studio into her own home, she plans to continue offering the Vocal Harmony & Improv summer experience through the Academy in future years.