Description: Singers use their knowledge of voice production, melody, and harmony to interpret music and text. They sing character parts or perform in their own individual styles. Singers also record music for movies, television, and video games.
Knowledge Required: Music theory, drama, art, foreign language
Skills: Singers require a strong musical sense and a talented voice. Singers begin vocal training once their voices mature.
Career Path: Singers need extensive and prolonged training and practice to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to interpret music at a professional level. Formal training may be obtained through private study, in a college or university music program, or in a music conservatory. A bachelor's degree in music is required to teach at a basic level. It is important to network yourself as a singer and to audition as much as possible.
Best Cities for this job: Metropolitan areas with a high concentration of recording and entertainment activities such as New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, and Nashville, are the best places to find employment.
Median Annual Income: The inconsistent hours and short term nature of the job make it difficult to determine a median annual income. The national median hourly income of musicians and singers is $29.10 and the California median hourly income is $35.02.
Future Growth: In the next decade, singing positions are expected to remain constant while teaching careers are expected to increase.
From the field: “It is one of the greatest joys of my life. To be able to live my life in a way that brings me such great pleasure and, I hope, brings beauty into the life of others.” -Denyce Graves. Opera Singer/Performer
Did you know? Most American opera companies offer youth artist programs to transition singers from school to professional singing.View more Day at Work videos »