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From Couch to Chorus: Which voice type?

We’re thrilled to have launched the third edition of From Couch to Chorus, our series of online singing workshops, with Sing into Spring.

Open to all levels of singers from complete beginners to experienced choir-goers, this is a fun, four week, ‘pay as you feel’ course.

If you’d like to join us but need help figuring out which voice type you are, this guide is for you. Listen to recordings from a previous edition of From Couch to Chorus, performed by the Chorus of Opera North, and sing along to see which one feels most comfortable!

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Soprano

The highest vocal range of all the voice types, sopranos often sing the melody line. Listen to the soprano element of the Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen:

Jennifer Davis in the SOPRANO role of Donna Anna, Don Giovanni 2018 © Bill Cooper

Alto

Altos have a slightly lower singing voice than sopranos, adding harmony lines to a chorus. The alto part is usually sung by a medium to low female voice or a ‘countertenor’ – a countertenor is a male voice type which uses the very high part of their voice called falsetto.

Listen to the alto element of the Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen

Kathryn Rudge (MEZZO) as Zerlina in Don Giovanni 2018 © Bill Cooper

Tenor

tenor will also often sing harmony lines, and is the second-lowest voice type in a chorus. The tenor part is usually sung by a high male voice or sometimes a very low female voice. If you can hit the notes then that’s the only thing that matters! Listen to the tenor element of the Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen

Nicholas Watts in the TENOR role of Don Ottavio, Don Giovanni 2018 © Bill Cooper

Bass

Basses are the lowest voice type in our chorus, providing the all-important bassline! Listen to the bass element of the Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen

John Savournin in the BASS role of Leporello, Don Giovanni 2018 © Bill Cooper

Whilst we hope these clips provide a guide, every person’s voice is different. If you’re still unsure, just get in touch at lifelonglearning@operanorth.co.uk and we’ll be happy to help. Sessions for From Couch to Chorus: Sing into Spring begin on 24 February. 

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