Re: Choral singing ("R. Parncutt" )

Subject: Re: Choral singing
From:    "R. Parncutt"  <psa03(at)CC.KEELE.AC.UK>
Date:    Tue, 29 Apr 1997 09:24:53 +0100

> > Whereas, for example, the fifths on the piano have all been slightly > > stretched to make up for the pythagorean comma, in a choir they may be all > > sung perfectly in tune, which is nevertheless flat in equal temperament. Let's just get the story straight here. A brief perusal of the ample scientific literature on intonation reveals that this widely held idea is a myth. Within-note variation in fundamental frequency of singers' voices, even in the very best ensembles and without noticeable vibrato, regularly exceeds a comma. There is no evidence that pure fifths are preferred by listeners or performers over equally tempered fifths, in performances where performers have real-time control over intonation. Richard Parncutt, Lecturer in Psychology of Music and Psychoacoustics, Unit for the Study of Musical Skill and Development, Keele University. Post: Dept of Psychology, Keele University, Staffordshire ST5 5BG, GB. Tel: 01782 583392. Email: r.parncutt(at) Fax: 44 1782 583387. >

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