I wasn't supposed to be a music artist. But I believe you must live the life you imagine for yourself (& dream BIG). Join me on this journey!

How to Win A Hmong Singing Contest - Part 1


I’m gonna cut to the chase. Your voice is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of your journey as a singer & in competing too.

This section was Part 4 of the original blog series. Yet I believe if your voice is not the strongest factor in your performance, every other part in this blog series is irrelevant. That's why it's now the first thing I talk about.  

Before you tackle anything else I mention in this series, your voice should be your #1 priority in preparing to win a singing contest.

So, how do you prepare your voice?


Tip #1: Take a listen.

And I mean a genuine listen to your voice. Do not depend solely on your little sister, your best friend, or YouTube. Record your voice. Listen.

Do you like its tone, its style, the way you hold that high A?
What about your voice do you like? Or not like?

Keep what you like.
Work at what you don’t like.
And work hard.


Tip #2: Listen to the singers you admire.

Your favorite artists can teach you a whole lot about yourself as a singer. They show you the qualities and characteristics that you find valuable in a voice, and perhaps would like to possess in your own voice.

Two of my favorite singers off the top of my head are Celine Dion and Charice Pempengco (pictured). They both have powerful, soaring, effortless, and versatile voices—all qualities that catch my attention and my heart.

They’re also all on my list of what I want my voice to be. To have them, I need great breath control, one area of singing that I continue to work on as a vocalist. Even after all these years of singing and competing, I still desire to grow as a singer, which leads me to the next tip.


Tip #3: Create a daily vocal practice.

This is easier said than done. I know this very well, but it's truly key to building stamina in your voice.

A daily vocal practice can be as simple and short as a 15-minute practice. Here's an example:

00:00 - 05:00   Stretch body & warm up vocals
05:01 - 10:00   Practice 3 vocal exercises
10:01 - 15:00   Rehearse your song of choice, one time through

Once you're ready to move on, add 5 more minutes and so on. What are you waiting for? It's all up to you!


Judge's Tip

When it's showtime, I can tell who's been practicing and who's just winging that challenging part in his/her song. Practice! Practice! Practice!

Bottom Line  

Use the reflections you have on your voice to create a daily vocal practice.

Hope you enjoyed Part 1 of the “How to Win a Hmong Singing Contest” blog series. Feel free to leave me a comment/question in the comments below!

DISCLAIMER: The How to Win a Hmong Singing Contest blog series is a collection of Pagnia Xiong's personal experience with competing and judging for Hmong singing contests. It was first published in October 2013 and has since been updated with new insights & tips. Please note this blog series is simply a guide and any action whatsoever taken based on the contents of this website or any of its related sites, materials, products or information is to be used solely at your own discretion, risk and liability.

How To Win A Hmong Singing Contest - Part 2

How to Win A Hmong Singing Contest - Intro