Diane Nalini – Workshops

Diane Nalini is an award-winning jazz singer and songwriter with over 10 years of experience teaching music and science to learners of all ages, from high school students to retirees. She has released four critically-acclaimed albums, performed at jazz festivals around the world, and given gala performances for President Bill Clinton and Sir Paul McCartney. 

An accomplished songwriter, composer, and lyricist, Diane has written or co-written songs that have been used in major Hollywood releases, indie films, television shows and video games. She writes and performs songs in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese in a wide range of settings, from duos to big bands.

Workshop descriptions:

Diane offers a range of fun and accessible workshops that are well-suited for ukulele festivals or as standalone events – please see videos below (which were kindly filmed by Craig Chee & Sarah Maisel). For more information, please contact Diane directly. 

Intro to vocal improvisation - 12 bar blues

This workshop is a fun introduction to vocal improvisation (scatting) on a 12-bar blues. Through call-and-response exercises, we’ll explore how to play with rhythm, dynamics and phrasing to make interesting music. You will learn how to pick out the essential notes that help anchor your improvisation in the harmony of the song. 

Maintaining a healthy voice

If you sing or speak in public, this workshop will help you maintain vocal health. You will learn simple vocal warm ups, exercises and body movements that help liberate and strengthen the voice. We will also go through some simple warm-down exercises that help reduce strain after an event.

Intro to bossa nova

In this workshop, we will break down the rhythms of Brazilian bossa nova. We will then explore different comping patterns that you can use when exploring the wonderful world of bossa nova. You don’t need to know a lot of jazz chords for this workshop  as the emphasis will be on getting the rhythms down.

The Anatomy of Songwriting

In this single-session workshop, we’ll explore some of the different ways of approaching songwriting – lyrics first, melody first, or hooks like rhythmic patterns or refrains. We’ll also explore the benefits of setting constraints when we’re overwhelmed with too many options. 

Musical matchmaking

Crafting the perfect lyric for any melody* : In this extended workshop, I’ll provide you with a melody and you’ll work collaboratively in small teams to write lyrics for the different sections of the song along a common theme that we’ll choose together. Participants will gain hands-on experience of crafting words that flow naturally with the melody.

*Workshop can be split into 2 x 1.5 hours, 3 x 1 hours, or a single 3 hour session. .

The Art of Jazz Singing

In this workshop, we’ll examine how some of the great jazz singers put their personal stamp on songs. You will learn how they used rhythm, phrasing and melodic variation to make a song their own and create unique interpretations. You can then apply these same concepts to put your own stamp on your favourite song, regardless of style.

Some student feedback:

Diane’s enthusiasm for her subject was infectious… She gave me insights into singers I had never considered before. Her own vocal demonstrations were lovely to listen to, but also very instructive. 


Diane is awesome! She is fun and enthusiastic and really passionate. She is very organized and loves to teach. She is amazing, a wonderful person who is fun and down to earth!


I loved her enthusiasm. She responded to questions in a positive and accurate way. This made everyone feel comfortable in the class setting. She is very approachable… I would highly recommend to everyone who loves music.


Diane Nalini has a fabulous voice and remarkable knowledge of the music taught. She’s very entertaining and easy to understand.