How do operatic singing techniques optimize for volume?
February 23, 2013 8:27 AM Subscribe
Someone once told me that a lot of the distinctive "sound" of opera developed as a way to be heard without amplification. Two specific claims I remember: diphthongs are separated into multiple monophthonic syllables, and phonemes which are hard to sing loudly are replaced by easier ones (which sometimes don't even exist in that language). There were others relating to actual singing that I forgot. Does anyone know of a good discussion of this topic that talks about biomechanics and acoustics? Not to ignore artistic and historical considerations, but I'm looking for a somewhat technical discussion. In particular, I'd love to see a comparison with singing styles developed for amplification and recording.
posted by d. z. wang to science & nature (3 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite