"Mixed" Registers in Singing

Donald Miller, Groningen Voice Research Lab

In "classical" singing technique, the transition between "chest" and "middle" registers in the female singing voice is generally recognized as the primary register transition, a change in the vibration pattern of the vocal folds from deep vertical contact and a relatively large closed quotient to a pattern of contact of the upper margins and a reduced closed quotient. One of the usual goals of classical singing technique is to minimize any perceptual discontinuity in the execution of this transition. This study uses electroglottograph (EGG) signals for monitoring the closed quotient, as well as acoustic analysis, in examining the approaches of some highly trained singers to this task. The so-called "mixing" of the registers, a frequently encountered concept in practical vocal pedagogy, is a point of particular interest.

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