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On the Art of Singing$
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Richard Miller

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780195098259

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195098259.001.0001

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Vowel Definition in a Performance by Jussi Bjoerling of Vesti la giubba

Vowel Definition in a Performance by Jussi Bjoerling of Vesti la giubba

91 Vowel Definition in a Performance by Jussi Bjoerling of Vesti la giubba
On the Art of Singing

Richard Miller

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines vowel definition in tenor Jussi Bjoerling's performance of Vesti la giubba from I Pagliacci in a “Voice of Firestone” telecast recorded on November 19, 1951. For purposes of acoustic analysis of how a premier singer handles vowel differentiation and modification, three range segments from the Bjoerling performance are considered: sung phonations that lie largely within the speech inflection range (historically known as “chest” voice); sung phonations that lie primarily in the middle range of the singing voice (traditionally termed zona di passaggio or “mixed voice,” that is, the area between the traditional first and second male-register pivotal points); and sung phonations that are concentrated in the upper range (commonly referred to as “head” voice).

Keywords:   vowel definition, performance, Jussi Bjoerling, tenor, Vesti la giubba, singer, vowel differentiation, phonation, singing voice

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