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BAPAM’S Back to Performance Series: Looking after your voice – a guide to vocal health

11:00am – 1:00pm, Thursday 5th Aug 2021

BAPAM’s purpose is to improve health in the performing arts and support enhanced performance excellence through wellbeing and good practice.

BAPAM deliver expert health and wellbeing services in the performing arts. Our events give artists, creators, technicians, teachers, and organisers the knowledge they need to improve health and enjoy sustainable careers.

As the largest provider of career-specific healthcare to performers in the UK, we are uniquely positioned to bring together expert clinicians, educators, researchers, artists and creators to deliver innovative training to empower the arts community to improve and maintain health throughout our creative work and learning spaces.

This introductory 2-hour session is designed for performing arts professionals and students and outlines risk factors and key strategies to maintain good vocal health throughout a sustainable career.

The session focuses on evidence-based practical skills and draws from performance experience, research findings, psychology, and proven vocal health clinical pathways. Participants will learn how to avoid vocal problems and identify the signs and symptoms if they do occur, how to manage issues, promote good health, and where to go for help.

Tutor: Eimear McCarthy Luddy

Eimear McCarthy Luddy is a Dublin-based singing teacher with a keen interest in vocal health and singing voice rehabilitation. She recently became the first Irish person to complete advanced training in voice science (also called vocology) at the National Centre for Voice and Speech in Salt Lake City. She qualified from the Royal Irish Academy of Music with a Masters in Music Performance where she performed multiple operatic roles including Ramiro in Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera and Mrs. Beane in a world premiere of Siobhán Cleary’s Vampirella. As a singing teacher she maintains a busy practice of young students and professional singers; she also returned to RIAM as a deputy teacher in the vocal faculty. She has presented vocal health education seminars for singers and singing teachers, and is actively working with experts in the field of medicine and speech therapy with the hope of creating a voice care community in Ireland.

Research looking at health issues within the performing arts workforce consistently finds that 70-75% of our population report both mental and physical health problems, which is much higher than the national average. We are lucky to be working with a number of health and wellbeing experts who can offer training to performers across the UK, with the aim of reducing the levels of poor health and supporting performers to have a sustainable career. Working with our partners in Equity, Musicians’ Union, Help Musicians UK and Performing Arts Education Providers – who are very kindly giving us free use of training venues – we are expanding our national training programme supporting healthy performance in the UK.