Effects of singing training on the speaking voice of voice majors

Ana P Mendes, W S Brown, Howard B Rothman, Christine Sapienza
Journal of Voice 2004, 18 (1): 83-9
This longitudinal study gathered data with regard to the question: Does singing training have an effect on the speaking voice? Fourteen voice majors (12 females and two males; age range 17 to 20 years) were recorded once a semester for four consecutive semesters, while sustaining vowels and reading the "Rainbow Passage." Acoustic measures included speaking fundamental frequency (SFF) and sound pressure level (SLP). Perturbation measures included jitter, shimmer, and harmonic-to-noise ratio. Temporal measures included sentence, consonant, and diphthong durations. Results revealed that, as the number of semesters increased, the SFF increased while jitter and shimmer slightly decreased. Repeated measure analysis, however, indicated that none of the acoustic, temporal, or perturbation differences were statistically significant. These results confirm earlier cross-sectional studies that compared singers with nonsingers, in that singing training mostly affects the singing voice and rarely the speaking voice.

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