The OVS Objective

The purpose of OVS is to provide equipment, resources, knowledge and practical experience in an educational, productive and comfortable environment.

OVS aims to provide a supportive and encouraging environment to assist people in their musical pursuits.

At OVS, you will be encouraged to be creative and uninhibited; you will be encouraged to explore your potential and grow in confidence; you will be encouraged to pursue what you are passionate about in life with enthusiasm and determination.

You can bring a song idea that you recorded on your mobile phone or scribbled onto a scrap piece of paper to OVS and experience it being turned into a fully produced and recorded song.

You can simply attend OVS to record yourself singing or playing an instrument and experience a project studio recording session.

The OVS teaching method is based on a mix of formal education and industry experience. The education you will receive at OVS is based on common sense – what works, what doesn’t work; what to do, what not to do – and the teaching style is based on what is relevant to the individual student needs.

Ofelia worked full-time as a vocal coach for Music Schools, Singing Studio’s, Performing Arts Academies, Talent Agencies and Colleges for 7 years.  After noticing a lack of equipment and resources that were provided to students attending such practices, Ofelia decided to design her own home studio in 2006 to be equipped and furnished with all the necessary tools which she believed beneficial to anyone attending music lessons.

Ofelia now only teaches exclusively from OVS where she is able to provide comprehensive tuition based on the students needs, vocal level and age at an efficient and effective standard.

Ofelia has taught children at the age of 4 to adults at the age of 77 and children and adults with learning disabilities and physical handicaps.  They all had two things in common – they loved to sing and wanted to sing better.

My Purpose as a Vocal Coach

My first note to vocal students and to those of you considering undertaking vocal instruction is that developing into a better singer is a lot more in depth than just singing songs.  It is the same concept as how you would go about learning to acquire any skill from learning to play a sport, drive a car, dance, play the piano etc.  Learning how to do something well involves regular practise and repetition, understanding and application.  Learning how to maintain good health is the foundation for anyone to thrive and is covered and encouraged at OVS.

It is a common misconception that I have come across many a time where after a student attends their first lesson they are surprised at how much is involved in acquiring good vocal technique.  Yes, there is a particular technique that a good singer is using while they are singing beautifully with seemingly little effort… it is similar to watching a swan gliding along the river ever so ethereally, until you put your head under the water and see their feet paddling.

In undertaking the instruction of a vocal coach, you are saying that you are willing to develop your skills as a singer.  If you are prepared to do this, then there is a need to be patient to learn and develop the techniques of skilled singing so that those techniques can permeate into how you sing a song.  I know a lot of people just want to sing and think that by singing in front of a vocal coach they will miraculously get better.  My job is to give knowledge and to explore your voice with you so that you can experience a greater sense of fulfillment when singing.  If you do not apply the proper techniques by regularly practising them, then your singing abilities will improve at a very slow pace.

Even if you are fortunate to possess a natural ability to sing, those skills will be limited without proper instruction.  Vocal techniques have evolved over the centuries and exist for a reason.  There really is no point in someone employing the instruction from a vocal coach if they are not prepared to devote the time in understanding the concepts behind using their voice in a skilled fashion outside of their lesson.  There is no such thing as an overnight success story… there are many years of work that precede achieving such glory.

I get great satisfaction out of seeing a student’s vocal skill improve and seeing them work towards a goal and achieve it.  My method of teaching is not based on one school of training… it is based on many including my own experiences as a vocalist and maturing human being.  As we age, our voice changes; everytime I perform, I learn something new… all this wisdom, experience and knowledge I endeavour to impart onto my students.

As a vocal coach, I am prepared to teach those who want to be taught.  I am not prepared to spend the time and effort on students who do not take their lessons seriously, are disrespectful, lazy or are here because their parents want them to be.  I will spend my time and efforts only on students who want to learn, improve and grow at OVS.  I provide the facilities, resources and opportunities to all OVS students so that can get the most out of their lessons.

I respect all who attend OVS and ask for the same in return.  Any student who does not fit in with the standards of OVS will not be tolerated.  If OVS decides to terminate the enrolment of a student, all remaining lessons on the term account will be refunded.

So, in conclusion, my job is to teach you good vocal technique in a supportive and enjoyable environment.  Your job is then to put these techniques into practise.

StarNow is an excellent website to be a member of if you are a performing artist 18+.

As a member of StarNow, you will recieve notifications for auditions, talents quests, performance opportunities and work in the music industry.

Having your own artist listing on StarNow also allows talent scouts and agents looking for an artist to find you and contact you.

As a member you can also utilise StarNow to post auditions yourself.

For more information, click here.

Songwriting Competitions

There are several Songwriting Competitions held throughout the year.

Following are links to some of these songwriting competitions that OVS students who have recordings of their own songs are encouraged to submit to:

The Song of the Year

For more information and to enter, click here.

The 2011 Vanda & Young Songwriting Competition
Click here for more information and to your enter the competition.

The International Songwriting Competition (ISC)
Click here for more information and to your enter the competition.

Newsong Contest
Click here for more information and to your enter the competition.

The John Lennon Songwriting Contest
Click here for more information and to your enter the competition.

Unsigned Only Music Competition
Click here for more information and to your enter the competition.

Visit APRA|AMCOS for their listings
Click here for more information.

Learning a Song – An Approach

When learning a new song, consider the following seven points in your approach:
1. Song Lyrics
2. Melody
3. Song Structure
4. The theoretical implications of the song
5. The dramatic and emotional elements of the lyric requiring response from the voice and the singer
6. Music Genre
7. Personal Interpretation

1. Song Lyrics
Word processing or writing out the lyric of the song is an important step in studying the song. The following article shows you how to do this.

The lyric of a song is written with purpose and is sung by the vocalist so there is an expectation that it be sung clearly and with feeling so that the messsage or story of the song is conveyed, so pay attention to the diction and phrasing of the lyric. When it comes to phrasing, you can write your breathing marks on the lyric sheet using a tick or ‘. This is very good practise so that when you have your lyric sheet on a music stand and your are practising the song, you can instantly see where you are supposed to breathe without having to rely on your memory. By the time you can sing the song without the lyric sheet, simply by muscle memory, you will naturally breathe with the correct phrasing.

The importance of song lyrics can be dependant on the style of song. If you are singing a dance piece, the lyric will more than likely be less important than if you were singing an inspirational ballad.

2. Melody
The melody of the song is made up of phrases of pitch and rhythm. Listen to the song and break it down into sections. Learn the melody of one section at a time e.g. start with the first section of the song. If it is the verse, learn the melody of the verse first, then learn the next section until you have learnt the entire song.

3. Song Structure
The form and shape of the whole piece will be evident when looking at your song lyric sheet. Be aware of the flow of sections so you know what section follows what.

A song can contain some or all of the following sections:
– Introduction
– Verse
– Pre-Chorus
– Chorus
– Bridge
– Instrumental Interlude
– Tag/Outro

4. The theoretical implications of the song
Understanding the musical elements of the song helps not only assists you in learning the song but also comes in handy when working with other musicians.

Know the following components of the song:
– The key that you perform it in
– Your starting note
– How many bars before you start singing
– Consider having a chord chart or band charts for the song

5. The dramatic and emotional elements of the lyric requiring response from the voice and the singer
This is when you pull from your tool belt of vocal qualities and techniques to add depth, emotion and conviction to your vocal performance. You can use dynamic changes (singing softly or loudly), belt, various levels of twang, vocal fry, whispering, speech, vocal tilting, melismas and the list goes on…

6. Music Genre
The style of your performance is dictated by what music genre the song belongs or you are interpreting the song as. Contemporary genres of music such as pop, R’n’B, music theatre, blues, reggae, rock etc have a their own style which differentiates one from the other. Be aware of the stylist elements of the song you are singing.

7. Personal Interpretation
Your personal response to the piece is important because this is what ensures your performance is unique and worth taking notice of. If you are singing a cover, you can sing it exactly like the recording artist or give it your own interpretation. With us all being unique from one another, a singer will naturally add in their own style when singing a cover especially once they are familiar and comfortable singing the song.

Once you understand these elements, then it’s all about practise and repetition and ingraining the lyric of the song so you can confidently perform the song focusing on how you want to convey the song rather than worrying about what section is next or what the next word is.

Practice Makes Perfect

Regular practice is essential. It is very important to recognise that, as a singer, you are a vocal athlete and that you are training a muscular and mental co-ordination. Each time you sing, you are building a muscular co-ordination that controls the breath and resonance that you want. Your development as a singer requires a controlled repetitive approach (that any good athlete would use) to develop your voice and refine your skills, hence the goal to possess good vocal technique.

A vocal coach can guide you in how to warm-up your voice and how to strengthen your voice through various exercises and repertoire.


If you are a music creator or music consumer, the Apra-Amcos website is one of those useful and resources websites to put on your Favourites list. On this website, you will find plenty of useful information relating to the music industry. Competitions, workshops and all sorts of opportunities are listed on the website so become a member and check in regularly.

APRA – Bringing music creators & consumers together

The Australia Performing Right Association (APRA) collects and distributes licence fees for the public performance and communication of our member’s musical works. The Australian Mechanical Copyright Owners Society (AMCOS) collects and distributes mechanical royalties for the reprodution of our member’s musical works.

Click here for more information.