Vibrato Rate and Extent in College Music Majors: A Multicenter Study

John Nix, Nicholas Perna, Kimberly James, Sheila Allen
Journal of Voice 2016, 30 (6): 756.e31-756.e41

OBJECTIVES: To examine differences in vibrato rate and extent according to vowel, production type, gender, voice type, and vocal training.

STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional.

METHODS: Four collegiate voice teachers used a common protocol to gather data on habitual, best classical, and nonvibrato singing production of five vowels in 78 male and female vocal majors. Subject age, gender, voice type, academic degree program, number of years of training, and most frequent singing style were compared with mean vibrato rate and mean peak-to-peak vibrato extent for each vowel and for each production condition.

RESULTS: The high versus low and female versus male comparisons in this study support results found in the literature. Both vibrato rate and vibrato extent were reduced when the singers sang nonvibrato as compared with their habitual and best classical production.

CONCLUSIONS: The mechanisms for reducing vibrato rate and extent need further exploration.

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