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Melba Moore: Breathing Is a Lot More Than Just Staying Alive

Tony Award Winner and 4-Time Grammy Award Nominee

Photo Credit: Shefik

American R&B singer and actress Melba Moore is a 4-time Grammy Award nominee and the winner of the 1970 Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical.


Hi, I'm Melba Moore, Tony Award winning actress and four time Grammy Award nominee. And, um, I want to talk about breathing. Why? Because it keeps you alive. Of course I know that sounds silly, and everybody knows that. But it seems to me I made myself famous almost just for breathing. Someone timed one of my notes to be 42 seconds long. That's a very, very, very, very, very, very, very long breath. But I did a lot of swimming and I did a lot of exercising to learn how to really focus on breathing. And there's a couple of different ways you can breathe. You can breathe from your diaphragm, which most singers do. So that you can take deep breaths. But a lot of athletes kind of breathe from their chest up here because they've gotta pant and breathe hard and breathe a lot. And, you can't hyperventilate So breathing is a lot more than just staying alive. Sometimes it can make you famous.

Last Updated: September 10, 2021

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