Testing a new protocol to measure tuning response behaviour in solo voice ensemble singing

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Tuning within choirs when performing a capella contin-ues to be a subject of interest to researchers and practi-tioners in terms of theoretical preferred tuning systems and the instinctive tuning behaviour of choral singers. Although more studies are exploring the issues surround-ing tuning within choirs, most research on tuning in choirs focuses on the mean fundamental frequency of tones, either through analysis of performance, or percep-tual listening tests. This paper considers a specific proto-col and tools for analysis to assess the tuning characteris-tics of individuals singing in a choral texture. The results illustrate the tuning features throughout single notes and the extent to which singers adapt their tuning to the sur-rounding chord in equal temperament and just tuning. To test the effectiveness of this new methodology, data col-lected in a previous experiment is reconsidered in which singers were recorded performing a specially written cho-ral exercise where the other parts were synthesised and heard over headphones. Overall the analysis proved a successful and efficient process. The results of the analysis suggest that further research into the tuning tendencies of choral singers, particularly in terms of fundamental frequency trajectories would prove valuable as a research area. Modifications to the protocol are considered for an upcoming study, which is planned for next year, and a revised hypothesis for the tuning strategies in the set ex-ercise is presented.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventSound and Music Computing Conference 2013 - Stockholm, Sweden
Duration: 30 Jul 20132 Aug 2013


ConferenceSound and Music Computing Conference 2013
Abbreviated titleSMC 2013
Internet address


  • tuning
  • singing
  • voice analysis

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