A really good way of fast-tracking the transition from a harmony part to Lead is to get your lead to sing your songs by themselves, in front of you. It may feel a bit embarrassing/scary at first, but you’ll get a lot out of it as a quartet:

  • singing Lead requires a certain amount of solo quality and charisma – this strips away the hiding spots and helps you get over the hurdle of OWNING the melody and selling the song;
  • if you’ve just switched into Lead, your quartet lineup is new. This technique will get the harmony parts attuned to your inflections, sound etc. much faster than when they’re singing at the same time
  • it’s very easy to be ‘driven’ by other members of the quartet if you’re not used to singing Lead – a real no-no, so getting to put your stamp on the interp solo is a really good plan. But do remind her, harmony parts, where you have moving notes when she’s holding (& spinning);
  • the Lead needs to take responsibility for lyricism. If duetting with another part feels like a fight, or you feel you’re changing what you do to fit in with them, stop, sing the phrase solo for them, then insist they sing it exactly as you do. You should feel totally supported and weightless in a duet or full quartet, if they are doing this properly!

Even if you’ve been singing Lead for years, this can be a great way to refresh your confidence within the quartet and get those pesky harmony parts listening to you!

Lead, nee Baritone
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