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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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Breath Management, Diction, and the Vocal Legato

Breath Management, Diction, and the Vocal Legato

Chapter:
5 Breath Management, Diction, and the Vocal Legato
Source:
On the Art of Singing
Author(s):

Richard Miller

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195098259.003.0005

This chapter discusses the interrelationships between breath management, diction, and the vocal legato during singing. The very foundation of singing rests on the breath cycle (inspiration, phonation, and breath renewal), During singing, breath is turned into tone. When unhindered by clumsy diction, the flow of vibrant sound results in an unrelenting legato line that can he contoured at will. When the artistic imagination is coupled with technical mastery of subglottic pressure, airflow, vibrancy, and skillfully executed diction, the resultant flow of tone will be compelling in its freedom. Communication with the audience—the ultimate goal of the singer—will then be direct and unencumbered. When legato singing is mastered, both listener and singer have the impression that words and syllables ride lightly and distinctly on a foundation of secure breath management. This chapter also considers the continuity of vowel sound, the duration of pitch consonants, the unification of consonant and vowel in the onset, the quickly occurring consonant, the nondiminishing vowel sound, the unmodified vowel sound, dynamic constancy (intensity) in diphthongization, and phrase inflection.

Keywords:   breath management, diction, vocal legato, singing, tone, vowel sound, pitch, dynamic constancy, diphthongization, phrase inflection

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