Postural Changes in the Throat: an Attempt to Correlate Visual and Acoustical Cues of Voice Production

Prof.dr. Harm K. Schutte, MD, PhD.

In this presentation, attention will be called to the relation between sound source (the larynx) and the sound-modifying vocal tract. Based on my experience of more than 25 years looking and observing the larynx, later via recording on videos, I will try to explain and bring my views on common important factors and existing differences between individual larynges of (professional) singers and non-singers. Attention will be paid to visually observed changes in dimensions of the relation between the lower pharynx and the laryngeal entrance (or outlet), the laryngeal collar. It might bring important conclusions for evaluating the possibilities of individuals. The outcome might be very helpful in explaining existing singers’ problems from a medical, anatomical and physiological point of view. Aspects of artistic voice production, not only from a medical doctor/laryngologist’s wish to observe the vocal folds in full length, but the role of the Morgagni Sinus, as well as the creation of a proper larger ratio of 1:6 of the opening between the laryngeal collar and the lower pharynx, will be discussed. Usually these aspects are being overlooked or are even avoided by non-singing specialized medical doctors and specialists. Understanding the possibilities for using specific resonance stategies by singers and the anatomical configurations (called postures) of the throat is of crucial importance for the evaluation of artistic singing. It will add a new diagnostic dimension to the more usual and traditional observations and interpretations of the postural (anatomical) aspects while visualizing of the vocal folds.

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