Singing and Voice

Find out how to begin a career in singing and voice, and learn about education programs that can prepare you for a career in the field. Get salary and job growth information for musicians and singers.

Is a Singing and Voice Career for Me?

Career Overview

Vocal talent and training can lead to a career in education, performance or songwriting. You could become a singer, music director, conductor, composer or arranger. If you're interested in a singing and voice career, you should possess musical attentiveness, musical aptitude, adaptability, originality, confidence and performance abilities. In a singing and a voice career, you might work irregular hours. You would spend a lot of time rehearsing and performing vocal exercises. You might work on a part-time basis. You might even have an additional job.

Employment Information

Employment of musicians, singers and related workers was expected to increase five percent from 2012-2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). In May 2013, musicians and singers earned a median hourly wage of $23.74. At the same time, music directors and composers earned a median annual salary of $48,330, or $26.23 per hour, also reported by the BLS (www.bls.gov).

How Do I Enter a Singing and Voice Career?

Training

Practicing your singing abilities at a young age can help you transition into this profession; voice training can cover melody, harmony, reading music and performing different types of music. You might also be able to obtain training in singing and voice through recreation. Involving yourself in school musical groups can provide groundwork for a career as a singer.

Undergraduate Education

Undergraduate and graduate degree programs in singing and voice are widely available at colleges with music departments. Your undergraduate singing and voice education might cover vocal ranges, language skills, conducting techniques and voice training. You'll also study music theory and the history of music. Opera, piano studies and vocal groups are also explored.

Graduate Education

If you're pursuing a master's degree in vocal performance, you'll typically take courses in music instruction and choral arrangement. If you're interested in teaching, you might choose to pursue a master's degree in music education. Doctoral degrees in performance, voice and vocal pedagogy are also offered through some universities.

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