the air column

The inner vibration of the instrumentist, whether he is a wind player or not – as you can figure out in Dominique Hoppenot‘s Inner Violin / Le violon intérieur -, expands in the air column, from the sound source to his vocal cords, up to his embouchure, then gets amplified by his instrument.

You can live through this slender inner space – rather named “column of sound“ by Alfred Tomatis in The Ear And The Voice – by relaxing your abdomen muscles, focussing on your natural breathing process, which makes you forget about your embouchure while enhancing your verticality and the deep rooting of the air column, like a tree trunk which would be embodied by your lower limbs.


The air column vibrates and recycles like the water jet at the center of the basin.

You should always internalize yourself, this way, stretching the sound out is appropriate, but doing so, just focus on the sound only, and keep your vertical standing up, together with your body opening.

When you sing, your body does open up, and it should always behave this way, we name it “sitting on the air“.

Robert Pichaureau
(translated by Guy Robert)


The idea is that the movements of the vocal cords be utilized for the artistic purposes of shaping a sound.

David LiebmanDeveloping a Personal Saxophone Sound

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