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Expressiveness in music performanceEmpirical approaches across styles and cultures$
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Dorottya Fabian, Renee Timmers, and Emery Schubert

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199659647

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659647.001.0001

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Temporal Variation in Singing as Interplay between Speech and Music in Estonian Songs

Temporal Variation in Singing as Interplay between Speech and Music in Estonian Songs

(p.185) Chapter 11 Temporal Variation in Singing as Interplay between Speech and Music in Estonian Songs
Expressiveness in music performance

Pärtel Lippus

Jaan Ross

Oxford University Press

Acoustic syllable durations were measured in Estonian utterances performed in parallel as recited and sung. A systematic effect of phonological syllable length was found irrespective of the group of participants (contemporary or historic). This effect of syllable length was modified by the mode of performance: it was present considerably less in music than in speech. In music, the effect of syllable length was in turn modified by song: it was present in two of the three songs, but absent in one song. The above results suggest that the correspondence between linguistic duration and musical rhythm in a quantity language such as Estonian is loosely defined. The nature of the correspondence between linguistic quantity and musical rhythm may be considered to a certain extent analogous to the tone–tune relationship in tonal languages.

Keywords:   syllable, Estonian, linguistic duration, musical rhythm, quantity language, tonal language

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