Honoring the Masters. Sharing the Journey.

Jacob Lieberman

Registered Osteopath & Psychotherapist, Specialist in the Management of Vocal Crisis

Biography

Jacob Lieberman is an internationally acclaimed expert on physical and psychological management of voice disorders. As an osteopath and psychotherapist, he has developed the Lieberman Protocol for laryngeal examination as well as manual therapy for the solution of muscle tension and the mobilization of the laryngeal joints.

He has co-authored articles on the clinical relevance of muscle and joint dysfunction, and researched and developed protocols for the examination and treatment of Muscle Tension Dysphonia (MTD) and associated symptoms. He has also contributed chapters to a number of textbooks including: “Diagnosis and Treatment of Voice Disorders,” “Treatment of Voice Disorders,” “The Voice Clinic Handbook” and others. 

His interest in the underlying emotional issues in many voice disorders resulted in him developing some of the first clinical tools, combining psychotherapeutic concepts with specific laryngeal palpation, to identify such issues. At the outset, he was one of the only laryngeal osteopaths in the UK and Europe.

In recent years laryngeal physical therapy is becoming more commonplace. In no small part due to his courses on Osteopathic medicine in Laryngology taking place in the Deutsche Stimmklinik Germany with Prof Markus Hess and his team. His research and clinical work added insights into better understanding of laryngeal mechanics and a better understanding of associated symptoms like TMJ dysfunction and Globus complaints. Jacob also teaches ENT doctors, speech therapists, and voice therapists in the United Kingdom and internationally. 

More information: www.jacob-lieberman.co.uk

Interview with
Jacob Lieberman

What would you consider to be the main focus of your career, or your “specialty”?

Rehabilitation of voice and swallowing complaints, diagnosis and treatment.

How did you discover your calling for your speciality? How did it start?

With research into the clinical relevance of the concept of “posture is important for voice” and the conclusion that voice and swallowing problems, in the majority, are local laryngeal events, not related to posture.

What do you love the most about your work?

Every patient is an individual, requires new non-rigid approach.

In your opinion, what qualities do you feel make an “excellent” Vocal Pedagogue?

Knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of voice production, knowing what is relevant and what is mystic, non-physiological based ideas.

Can you speak to the importance of having mentors? How have mentors influenced your life/career? Can you tell us about some of your mentors?

Good idea if the mentor is knowledgeable, aware of their influential powers that they can exert on the young student, but more important, to be aware of their limitations. Bad idea if the mentor is wrapped up in his own narcissistic needs, has no awareness and is using the student as an extension of their own unconscious grandiose fantasies and need for success.

Building Blocks – Questions about ten key areas of voice

When it comes to breathing, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

  1. A good exhale ability is mandatory, the voice being a wind instrument
  2. Synchronization of airflow is NOT easy to achieve, given that breathing and voicing are paradoxical demands on the action of the larynx
  3. Exhale is a passive reverse of active breathing, if not exercised, leads to a rigid rib cage

When it comes to the larynx, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

  1. Low is good, keeping laryngeal muscle in a non-strenuous state
  2. Keeping the habitual speaking voice as low as possible
  3. Soft onset while speaking is a safe voice use
  4. Warming down after vocal load is mandatory for health and voice durability

When it comes to the vocal folds, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Keep vocal folds short and bulky in a low frequency habitual use.

When it comes to acoustics/resonance, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Low lying relaxed vocal tract.

When it comes to registration, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Having good techniques to negotiate the passaggios.

When it comes to vocal health, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Safe voice use requires good, synchronized airflow while voicing. Soft onset while using habitual pitch for speaking.

When it comes to style, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Synchronized airflow.

When it comes to posture, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

Keeping head in the midline and stopping push the head forwards WHILE TALKING OR singing.

When it comes to teaching methods or communicating complex ideas about singing, what are the most influential tips, insights or research findings that you would like to share with our audience?

In depth knowledge of anatomy and physiology of voice mechanism and breathing physiology.

Final Thoughts (Words of Wisdom, Resources)?

Be aware the internet is full of bad and inaccurate info, as well as good material.

Please note that Jacob Lieberman is not affiliated with VocalPedagogy.com and we do not disclose contact information. We hope you enjoy the interview!

Share Jacob Lieberman’s Profile

Related Vocal Pedagogues

Other experts you may find interesting.

Giovanni Battista Lamperti

Singing Teacher, Author, and Pedagogue
“It is an important matter to train the voice in flexibility. Even voices which are naturally rebellious and heavy are sure to gain by it in mellowness and beauty.” – Giovanni...

Lilli Lehmann

German Operatic Soprano & Voice Teacher
“Technique is inseparable from art. Only by mastering the technique of his material is the artist in a condition to mould his mental work of art and to give it...

Virginia Zeani

Singer, Voice Teacher
Virginia Zeani was a leading operatic soprano and a world-renowned voice teacher. She was born on October 21, 1925, in the small town of Solovastru, Romania. Zeani decided to become an opera singer at the age of nine when she heard a performance of "Madama Butterfly".