Using Solfa

Why learn solfa?

Singing and active participation is the fastest way to learn and internalise music, therefore developing musicianship skills easily and without the technical difficulties of an instrument.

By using hand signs alongside singing, pitch recognition is developed in a multi sensory way, enabling fast learning. We call this developing an inner ear to music (the ability to imagine sound). Also developing are musical memory, true intonation and harmonic hearing (acute listening skills).

But I am not a singer!

But you are a musician and need to develop many skills in order to play your instrument well and understand music. You do not have to be a trained singer to benefit from this approach – if you can draw breath you can sing in such a way that the musical world will become accessible to you. Using your voice to internalise sound gives musical understanding at the deepest level.

But I am not a small child!

Although solfa training is started in very young children, it can be used to develop musical skills at any age. To acquire musical understanding is the goal of all musicians, surely? For GCSE and A-Level  students, a deep aural ability is the easiest way to becoming an expert in the listening tests, especially in melodic dictation. I have taught this method to teenagers and adults taking instrumental exams and they have been able to gain good marks in the aural tests because they have   gained an accurate sense of pitch.

Here are some teachers learning Solfege :

“Daily Do” is sung with solfege (do re mi fa so la ti do) or (do re mi fa sol la si do) and Curwen hand signs. Find a video of teachers learning it on the Music Mind Games website.

“Daily Do” is the gateway song to singing and understanding intervals, major and minor triads, a major scale and a minor scale. Without effort, students learn the relationship of a major key to it’s relative minor. First students learn the notes, then rhythms and eventually students sing “Daily Do” as a 2 or 3-part canon.

The opening interval is a minor third, a natural interval for children of many cultures worldwide to sing. Beginning with three pitches (so mi and do) from the middle of the scale is easier than beginning at the bottom with do and one at a time, learning the six pitches above.

With practice, many students and teachers can sing the first note without having to hear it first. From that note, they are able to find any tone in the scale.