Free English Lessons

Talking About Singing – Listening Lesson (B1)

Can you sing? Is singing a natural talent, or can you learn to be a good singer? In this free English listening lesson from Oxford Online English, two people talk about learning to sing. You can learn some new vocabulary and phrases to talk about singing and music. This lesson is for intermediate learners.

Listen to the dialogue at normal speed here:

or listen to a slower version here:

Woman: What’s that tune you’re humming?
Man: It’s… Ah, what is it? I can’t remember; it’s gone. It’s just something we were singing in our choir last week.
Woman: I didn’t know you were in a choir!
Man: It’s just small, nothing fancy.
Woman: What kind of singing do you do?
Man: A real mix, actually. We do classical, jazz, gospel… pretty much anything you can think of.
Woman: That sounds fun. I wish I could sing.
Man: Lots of people say that as though you can’t learn, but you can. You should come down and give it a try.
Woman: Mmm, I don’t think so.
Man: No, really, you should. We’ve had lots of people like you, who’ve come in thinking they couldn’t do it, and most of them have got much better. Almost anyone can learn to sing if they want to. I think you’ll be surprised how much you can learn if you just give it a go.
Woman: Seriously? I thought it was just something some people could do and some people couldn’t.
Man: Not at all! Come along this weekend and have a try.
Woman: Hmm, maybe I will!

Talking about Singing – exercise 1
Vocabulary: singing and music

The dialogue contains several words related to singing and music.

Fill the gaps in a text, using some of these words.

Talking about Singing – exercise 2
Listening comprehension: understanding context and details

As you listen – in an exam or in real life – you need to work out information about the overall context as well as identifying specific details. This exercise is a mix of both.

Answer five questions about the dialogue by choosing the correct option.

Talking about Singing – exercise 3
Vocabulary: verb phrases

This is an informal dialogue between friends, so it includes many verb phrases that are common in speech but less appropriate in writing.

Listen to five expressions from the dialogue and read five sentences that use the same phrases in a different context. Choose the correct meaning.

Talking about Singing – exercise 4
Pronunciation: one sound, different spellings

There are many sounds in English that can be represented by more than one spelling. This is particularly true of vowel sounds.

Listen to five words from the dialogue and tick the words that have the same vowel sound.

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