How to Sing Like Celine Dion

By Kristina Seleshanko ; Updated September 15, 2017
Great control is needed to imitate Celine Dion's vocal style.

Celine Dion is the second-highest earning musician in history, and has been singing professionally since the age of 12. She has complete control over her voice, and is able to pull off everything from a whisper-soft ballad to a powerfully belted show stopper. She engages her listeners with specific vocal techniques that contribute strongly to her singing style.

Solid Technique

Celine Dion only began voice lessons at the age of 20, after being diagnosed with polyps -- nodes -- on her vocal cords. These lessons taught her how to protect her voice against future damage and enabled her to belt and sing in the wide range for which she's famous. Before attempting any of Dion's advanced vocal skills, get a solid foundation in vocal technique with an in-person, qualified teacher. By learning such basic singing techniques as breathing properly, ridding the throat of tension and learning to sing with the jaw in a comfortably vertical position, singers can develop the broad range and solid sound of Dion.

Belting the High Notes

Celine Dion is a belter -- which means she sounds as though she's taking her chest or her lower voice up into the head to generate a high voice with lots of power. Amateur singers often force or push their voices to achieve this belting sound, but this leads to vocal health problems. When belting, as with all singing, the throat and mouth shouldn't feel tense, the jaw should be loosely dropped and the diaphragm should feel tense while singing phrases. Using this simple technique, female singers can easily sing higher notes with a strong, belted sound, just like Dion.

Practice the Range

Because of Dion's voice experience and training, she has an octave range that spans five octaves; she is especially known for hitting the high notes with ease. To grab the high notes like Celine Dion, drop your jaw way down and keep any noticeable tension out of your throat. It may help to lift the edges of your mouth, as if you're smiling, as well as your cheekbones. You should feel vibrations in your sinus and mouth area. If you don't, sing the word "me," lingering on the "m" until you do.

Glottal Attacks

Listen to Celine Dion's original recording of "Because You Loved Me." Notice that when she sings "You're the one who helped me up" she emits a popping sound on the word "helped." This is called a glottal attack, and it's an important part of Dion's style. To achieve this sound, the vocal cords must come together somewhat forcefully, too forcefully and it's called a hard glottal attack, widely considered unhealthy for the voice. In practical terms, singing with glottal attacks just means attacking certain words harder than usual.

About the Author

Kristina Seleshanko began adult life as a professional singer and actress, working on both the West and East coasts. She regularly sang jazz in nightclubs, performed in musical theatre, and sang opera and pop. Later, Seleshanko became the author of 18 books, and has written for such publications as "Woman's Day," "Today's Christian Woman," and "True West." Seleshanko has also been a writing coach, a research librarian for "Gourmet" magazine, and a voice teacher.