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On-line version ISSN 2304-8557
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OLIVIER, Antoinette. Bel canto principles of singing with specific reference to the term appogio - a two part investigation of the pedagogy of Werner Nel (Article 1). Koers (Online) [online]. 2021, vol.86, n.1, pp.1-9. ISSN 2304-8557.

During his fixed tenure (1974-2010) as singing lecturer at the School for Music of the Potchefstroom University for Christian Higher Education - known as the North-West University (Potchefstroom campus) since 2004 - Werner Nel was responsible for the technical development that singing students would need to perform vocal art music in the European tradition. This article investigates the voice-technical principles that Nel used to teach his students, with special reference to the fundamental and admittedly difficult concept appoggio. The latter is a voice-technical and aesthetic ideal of core importance for the bel canto singing technique and accordingly it is used in this article as a point of departure to examine Nel's teaching methods, teaching principles or educationa approach concerning effective breathing for aesthetically pleasing sound production. The methods of data collection for this single, descriptive case study includes both a traditional and systematic literature overview of the bel canto singing technique, some of Nel's handwritten and typed documents, as well as semi-structured interviews with Nel and selected participants who studied with him and who currently work professionally as singers and pedagogues.

Keywords : appoggio; breathing for singing; bel canto singing technique; body posture for singing; Nel; Werner; teaching singing.

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