What Our Students Say
We are really proud of our fabulous student body – both current and past. Please feel free to read what a few of our students have to say about themselves, and learning to sing with Dr Dan…
We are really proud of our fabulous student body – both current and past. Please feel free to read what a few of our students have to say about themselves, and learning to sing with Dr Dan…
I’ve been touring NSW Folk Festivals and working the Sydney pub scene for the past 5 years and was referred to Dr Dan by a family member who, after hearing how I’d been struggling with strained vocal cords due to my heavy gig load, thought I might benefit from better technique. I’ve always been stubborn about getting lessons and sceptical about the difference they really make, but a term with Dr Dan has entirely changed my professional life! He is extremely professional, engaging and encouraging. He answered all my questions and set goals tailored to my specific vocal needs. His exercises have helped me face my heavy gig schedule and I will continue to use his videos as warm-up guides and to keep my voice in good nick! I now feel so much more confident in myself as a performer and an artist, knowing that I’m armed with knowledge and good technique. Can’t thank you enough, Dr Dan!
After a lot of searching for vocal teachers that we can put our trust in and who will be able to teach to our genre and style of singing, we came across Dr Dan and have not looked back. Dan is extremely knowledgeable and caters to his student’s unique needs and styles. We have noticed a huge change in the way we sing and our ability to do our job safely and healthily since starting coaching with Djarts.
Being a working singer in Sydney for the past 5 years or so, I struggled to find a singing teacher who could assist me in developing my contemporary singing technique. I was classically trained from a young age and was singing opera for 10 years during my adolescence, but things changed and at age 20, I entered the club and pub gigging scene where my classical technique wasn’t exactly supporting me in what I was doing. Singing in various rock/dance bands and intimate duos, I knew I needed to make some changes but I could not find a teacher that could, well… teach me.
It wasn’t until I got very unwell and was doing gigs with tonsillitis that I then needed to attend speech therapy to assist with some vocal damage that I had caused during that period. My speech therapist during that time recommended that I contact Dr Dan, as he offers online singing lessons. So I did, and I have been doing lessons with him now for almost 12 months and I have already noticed a massive improvement with my voice. I have learnt more effective voice placement, improved my bottom register and have not had any vocal issues since. I finally feel like a professional contemporary singer and not an ex-classical singer “faking” it.
Dr Dan’s warm approach and understanding of what it means to be a working singer has been so uplifting and would I highly recommend Dan to all serious working singers out there who want to have a long and happy career!
Dr Dan is an extraordinary mentor. I’ve worked with many vocal coaches in my life, but his approach is holistic and methodical. Throughout my recovery from vocal injury, he has been incredibly supportive not only with my voice, but also mentally. I went from barely being able to sing to not only regaining strength, but also addressing bad habits that others never noticed. Learning to sing is a lifelong journey, and I’m happy to have Dr Dan by my side on my way to recovery.
I first worked with Dr Dan in a 7 day intensive singing workshop in Toowoomba (Queensland, Australia). After that experience I was adamant I would be making the long trip from Toowoomba to Brisbane (a 3hr round trip) on a regular basis to continue working with him. I’ve had many different vocal teachers over the years (all of which were brilliant in their own right), but Daniel’s teachings really are next level! A world class vocal specialist without any doubt! His holistic approach to singing really is second to none, and to top it off, he has to be one of the most supportive and positive people I know. An absolute pleasure to work with!
“With a lifelong pursuit and passion for music, I came across Dan’s lessons as a developing contemporary artist looking for training that would assist in strengthening my voice and maintaining proper vocal health without focusing on a specific genre. At the age of 15 I began voice lessons with Dr Dan and found it helped strengthen my voice and attend to technique issues I wasn’t aware of. I then left to finish high school and jump into the world of music which has lead me to become the full time working musician/singer –songwriter I am today. Performing every week along with serious sinus issues, the high demand on my voice took its toll so I returned to Dr Dan’s lessons to work on maintaining a healthy voice for my performances and to brush up on some technique I had become lazy with. I would highly recommend Dr Dan’s lessons as they can benefit voices across a range of contemporary genres. He really knows what he’s doing. Daniel’s recorded lessons are my go to vocal warm up prior to the majority of my gigs. He’s also pretty swaggy and his vocal drills have a sick beat behind them so you won’t be getting any of those boring scales.”
“I was interested in adding to my existing practice as a professional songwriter and recording artist by gaining a better understanding of the mechanics of singing. Daniel’s knowledge of the technical aspects of contemporary voice is of the highest level, and as a result I have gained some valuable perspective on my current practice and the possibilities for further creative development.”
“Dr Dan runs a very professional voice studio. Not only was he a really nice guy, he was very supportive towards my music industry aspirations. The skills I have gained through his teaching have been imperative to my music career. He taught me the tools of my trade that I needed and now use every performance as a professional singer. From live festival performances to recording albums, I now have the skills and knowledge I need to use in my career for the rest of my life! I recommend Daniel to anyone who is serious about their craft and becoming a professional artist.”
“Dr Dan is legit. Without hesitation I can say one of the big (maybe the biggest) reason I am enjoying singing and performing again is the work Dan has done with me over a handful of lessons. Although I am a tertiary trained and experienced singer I had drifted well away from a ‘useful’ technique and was exaggerating elements of classical technique that were actually causing problems in stability and sound production. This was de-energising in the live environment and painfully frustrating in the studio! Dan easily analysed the issue and gave me exercises and insight to correct it, setting me at ease and making it ‘achievable’. Needless to say I’ve continued to make measurable progress with Dan and am feeling like I’m the ‘master of my own voice’ again. (Pro singers will know what I mean!) Obviously he is a great technician (as a vocalist and teacher) and can therefore accurately identify what is going on – and how to fix it or develop it. Furthermore he understands that contemporary vocalists are wanting style with their substance and can help the singer discover the tools for safely expressing the sound they desire. Killer combination. In an ever growing field of vocal tutors he is one of the few I would see for ongoing sessions. Don’t settle, Dr Dan is the real deal!”
Dr Dan is the man! I sing for a Heavy Metal band and was knocked back by quite a few singing coaches who did not “help my kind of music”. Dr Dan not only gave me the fundamentals and skills I needed to hone my craft but accepted my music and showed a genuine interest. I am now able to perform consistently and blow my audience away. Anyone who wishes to take their singing to the next level, needs [dj]arts in their life! Thank you Dr Dan.
“I have been singing for many years untrained and as such have sustained many vocal health issues over the years. In 2011 I had over 6 procedures to remove nodules in an attempt to get my speaking and singing voice back. Years of speech pathology and many visits to an ENT have eventually, and thankfully, lead me to see and work with Dr Dan. (Dan works with my both my ENT and speech pathologist so excellent for congruency in treatment).
I have now been seeing Dan for a few months and the transformation of my voice has been incredible. At times I thought I would never be able to sing again, but with encouragement, support and newly developed technical ability, I am able to sing! Yeahhhhhh!!! Having to undo bad habits and relearn with proper vocal techniques has been the key and I can’t thank Dan enough!! It is paramount that as singers we treat our voice with respect and nurture its abilities; it is this that I am most grateful for from working with Dan. I truly can not thank and recommend Dr Dan highly enough.”
“I found my time with Dr Dan so valuable. I loved the way he worked with my natural vocal style and strengths rather than trying to make me sound like something I’m not.”
“Throughout my journey with Dr. Dan over the past four years, I have had improvements in my voice I never thought I would. I have learnt how to control my voice, extend my range, manage my breathing, hit strong, high notes safely, build vocal stamina and maintain vocal health. But the most important lesson I have learned is having confidence in my voice. Thanks to Dr. Dan, I have discovered how to be the master of my own voice, and as a professional working singer in the music industry, I can be confident in that every time I perform.” Phil’s website is www.philhancockmusic.com and www.facebook.com/philhancockmusic
“As an actor it can sometimes be difficult to find a singing teacher that understands how actors use their voice, and how that can differ from the way a contemporary singer might use their voice. This has never been a problem while I have been training with Dr Dan. Dan has a great way of interacting and teaching students from both a technical and a performative point of view. Be it for contemporary singing, musical theatre or simply widening an actors vocal range, I thoroughly believe Dr Dan is one of the best in his field and would highly recommend Djarts & Dr Dan to any performer, be they a singer or actor, that is looking to improve their vocal technique, or widen their understanding of the voice.
I have been receiving lessons with Djarts on and off over the past 7 years and in that time I have gained a grater appreciation for my voice and how to use it for performance, both as an actor and singer. I could not have archived this without the guidance of Dr Dan.”
“In 2011 I was in my final year of University and playing so many gigs I completely burnt myself out. I took 2012 off musically to travel Europe and when I decided to start singing again in 2013 I had absolutely no confidence in my voice and needed help!
I cannot express my thanks enough to Dr Dan for taking me on as a student this year. Dr Dan’s lessons are planned to scaffold his students in a way that nurtures the voice and I find his lesson structure easy to engage with.
I am now working as a musician and high school music teacher and am finding my weekly lessons invaluable in both of these areas. I would have no hesitation recommending Dan to musicians, from amateur to professional.”
“Lessons with Dr Dan were a great experience for me – especially given I had not had lessons that focused solely on the voice beforehand.. The warm up techniques arguably became the single-most important factor in me being able to get the most out of my voice in a song/set, and to feel relaxed and ready for a gig…
Dr Dan has a passion for teaching his students about the voice, singing and all that accompanies which is evident in experiencing his lessons.. he displayed a vast knowledge and understanding of the associated physiology and ‘structure’ of the sound-making centres of the human. He also demonstrated empathy and sensitivity toward me as his student, that allowed me to feel at ease in singing, trying new things, and making mistakes, in front of him. In times where I wanted to talk through singing and performance, he was great – equally when I wanted to forget all that and just talk ‘general life stuff’, I felt he listened well, and offered words of compassion and wisdom. It would have been great to have taken him along to every gig I ever did!”
“I’ve always wanted to be a singer….a real singer…one who opens their mouth and just trusts in their instrument. My background is in classical piano. I am a professional repetiteur, accompanist, musical director, teacher. I have had the absolute pleasure of working with hundreds of singers in my time at the piano. Ranging from student singers and community choirs right through to professional singers, singing teachers, professional vocal ensembles/conductors and Opera Qld artists, my experience has been rich and varied. I also have a love of composing contemporary music for children. I’d love to be able to effortlessly sing my music and bring it to life in the way I hear it in my head. Solution- singing lessons. As a professional musician the decision to transition back to student was not at all hard. This is largely due to the fact that I put my trust in the incredible skills of Dr Dan. I have had exposure to an enormous array of singing teachers, however, for me studying with Dan was the logical choice- his expert knowledge of the contemporary voice and the coordinated biology behind it is first class. Dr Dan understands the pressures of being an adult learner, he is genuinely interested and supportive of the direction I wish to take my instrument in, he has complete respect for my strong classical background and his use of technology to assist the learning process is second to none. Thanks Dr Dan!”
“I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember but it wasn’t until I started having lessons with Dr Dan that I truly began to understand the ‘mechanics’ of how the voice functioned.
I went to Dr Dan at a time when I was losing confidence in my singing ability – my voice had gone through a lot of wear and tear and my on stage performances were beginning to suffer. I’m so glad I sought Dr Dan’s advice when I did. Being a performer himself, Dr Dan completely understood my situation and knew exactly what I needed to do to regain my confidence.
Dr Dan is passionate about ensuring that all of his students are well educated in all facets of the voice – something which I’ve enjoyed learning about and that has improved my vocal performances tenfold. Dr Dan is the man!”
Isaac’s Band Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/HelloHokkaido
“I have never had lessons before and always thought that singers should ‘find their voice,’ weird I know, but some people are doing this and are doing well because they might only play one gig a weekend and have heaps of time to recover, or they are just awesome. But I play minimum of 4 gigs a weekend ranging from 4-7 hours at pubs, clubs, restaurants, weddings. Before I started lessons with Dr Dan I was having all sorts of trouble, mainly chronic tonsillitis, so I was constantly on antibiotics and always sick with a cold or chest cough and all the other terrible things that go along with it, but also my voice would just cut out to nothing. Within a few weeks of lessons with Dan, applying his techniques, going to a throat doctor (ENT), changing nearly everything I was doing, I haven’t had any dramas since! (Well in saying that I have had dramas, but I now know the reason why my voice would be horse or failing and can fix it within a day instead of weeks as before.) Without going to Dr Dan I would not be a full time musician today.”
“Dr Dan’s not just a singer who’s teaching on the side. He knows the art, and science, of teaching singing and he’s passionate about using his knowledge to help students improve and develop their own sound. For me, he’s been a really positive influence and a great teacher.”
“I highly recommend Dr Dan for beginners of singing lessons as well as for professionals. As a music educator, I wanted an approachable and excellent teacher for my 13year old daughter and we are delighted with the skills and technique that she is learning at Djarts. Daniel is an expert in voice development and also considered very cool by my 13yr old! With up-to-date technology and sound pedagogy, Dr Dan is the contemporary vocal specialist I recommend.”
“Dr Dan had a choice between being just another singing teacher or what he actually chooses to offer at Djarts – A treasure of entertaining learning activities and a many-angled approach to voice and its mastery. His lessons exceeded my expectations and I think are suitable for anyone who wants to undertake a true study of singing. Great guy too!”
“I was not under the tutelage of Dr Dan for very long, but I would have to say that my time with Dr Dan was incredibly impactful. I grew up singing with my family and loved writing music, but I’m one of those vocalists that took singing for granted and never realised that my ‘instrument’ could do far more than I ever allowed it to. My voice very quickly developed a richness that I had never heard before thanks to my time with Dr Dan. I recorded an album in 2012 in the midst of my vocal lessons and I can hear Dan’s teaching in my voice every time I listen to it. Next year I will be touring around Australia and America attempting to make a living as a musician and an author. I am indebted to Dr Dan for helping me find confidence in my voice and for allowing me to be the singer I always wanted to be.”
“Since going under the tuition of Dr Dan, I’ve experienced an exponential improvement in my singing and vocal technique. His lessons are fun, rigorous and clear with structure that suits all singers at different stages of their musicianship!”
“After spending at least a couple of years trying out different vocal teachers, I had essentially given up of figuring out how to sing in a way that wouldn’t leave me feeling sore and without a voice. At the age of 20, I came across Dr Dan’s website and decided to give his lessons a go. The regular vocal analysis sessions was a big part of me choosing Djarts, and I have found them to be valuable in tracking my progress, as well as helping to regain a better focus during practice and generally along the journey of unlocking my potential as a singer.
Having taken lessons with Dr Dan for approximately 8 months, I am finding myself to be a much more confident singer, and I can now say I truly enjoy doing it!”
“At the age of 34, I felt that I had hit a glass ceiling with my vocal technique. I realised it had been a while since I’d had lessons and felt I had probably fallen into some “survival” habits that needed ironing out. I also knew that I needed a ‘technician” to help me identify them and create better habits. I had heard that Dr Dan was a brilliant coach and technician, and upon researching the website was excited to know that Djarts engage Adult Learning theories to engage the student and help them to learn to their fullest potential. I have been with Djarts over a year now and have seen so much improvement in the way I prepare and perform.”
“At the age of 28 I decided it was time to hone my vocal craft the best I could, but I had never taken vocal lessons before. Nick Hatch, The drummer in my band (Benjamin Hooper Trio), is a colleague of Dr Dan and he highly recommended I try lessons at Djarts! It’s the best decision I ever made!”
“I’ve been working with Daniel for a while now, and I can’t quite explain the difference he has made. My vocal ability has jumped greatly. But most importantly he has improved my confidence 10 fold.”