Mangalorean Recipes

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
Home Music Study Vocal Music Text Book Section 9 - The ideal scale

Section 9 - The ideal scale

E-mail Print PDF




The Ideal Scale

An individual singer’s voice is limited by the highest pitch as well as the lowest pitch that he can sing.   To identify the range, one should sing a scale and go as far  on either side of the range and note the limit by comparing on the Organ Keyboard.

Parts within Harmony


Women or children who can sing from the middle C of the keyboard to G, which is above the fifth line of the Treble Stave are classified as Sopranos.


Women or children  who can sing from F, below the middle C, to D on the third line of the Treble Stave are classified as Altos.


Male adults who can sing from the C, which is an octave below the middle C to G in the treble Clef, which is a fifth above the middle C are classified as Tenors.  Note the Tenors and Sopranos have similar range, but they are 8 notes apart.


Male adults whose range starts on an F, below the  first line of the Bass stave, and goes to the D which is below the first line on the Treble Stave are classified as Basses.


When  a Bass or Tenor, has to sing notes in the Treble stave, they are shown on leger lines, which extends the stave.

Similarly, if the Sopranos and Altos, go into the Bass stave, it is not necessary to write these notes on the Bass Stave.  LEGER lines are used for this purpose.

Speed and Loudness

So far we have come to know that the sounds have 'pitch' i.e. they go high and low.  The notes which we sing have a definite duration.   This only renders the body or structure to music.   However, the soul of the music consists in its 'expression' and 'feeling'.   Notice how an actor uses words, and displays emotion through them.  The same words said by an amateur, can sound drab.   Thus a difference can be made by introducing expression in music, as the professional musicians tend to do   Speed and loudness are elements of expression.  Certain types lend themselves to a quick tempo, and others like sad and majestic themes are rendered slowly.  Certain passages which need to be emphasized are sung louder than those which has pathos and sadness, which are sung   softly.

There are special terms to indicate speed and expression.  Terms of speed are generally given above the first stave, after the time signature.  Wherever the speed or tempo is to be changed, it appears above the stave.

Speed Instructions






Lively and Brisk


Moderately slow


Slower than Andante






Regular 1 crotchet per second


Gradually increase the speed


Gradually slow down the tempo


Corona or Fermata - sound is prolonged beyond the normal length.


Segno or sign.

The sign is generally used to tell the player or singer to go to the point where the sign is placed.  Generally, Dal segno, means from the sign.   Al Fine, means to the end.   Some times, the words are written: Dal capo al fine - which means from the start to the End.  Fine is generally written in the music, to show where it is to end.   This is done in order to reduce the pages of music and if the passages are to be repeated.

Volume Instructions

The letters are written in italic, and signify loudness of the music.


Piano, or softly  Double pp means more softly. Thus increasing the number of  letters, shows comparatively how soft to sing.


Forte, or loud.  Just as for piano  progressive loudness is shown by greater number of letters.


Gradual reduction in sound is shown by lines converging to a point from open end on the left.


Gradual increase in volume is shown by converging lines joint at the left and opening up towards the right

Singing of Lyrics

Lyrics are often an integral part of a song or a hymn.  A good lyric is that which has accents that coincide with the music accents and the sound lengths match with the syllables lengths.  Thus glory should have  a longer sound on 'glo' and shorter one on 'ry' and not vice versa just to squeeze the word into a rhythm.   In this case lyrics are badly chosen.   Lyrics should have a poetic quality as well and should convey an intelligible meaning.   This should be done  when preparing lyrics  for a borrowed melody.

Legato and Staccato:

The words should flow smoothly, and one should breathe at a place where the meaning permits it.   That is why ‘breath control’ is necessary.   When notes are sung in a flowing way, they are said to be ‘legato’.   In certain cases, the composer wants the syllables to be broken, and pronounced distinctly.   In this case, they are sung in ‘staccato’, and a dot is placed either about or below the music note.   In cases of passages to be sung in legato, curved lines are placed above a musical passage.


Before singing a piece or playing it, think of the meaning of the words, or the mood of the composer, so that you reflect the idea of the Composer.  Pronounce the words loudly and clearly and remember that the volume of sound and its clarity depends  on the size of the opening of your mouth.  Watch how professional singers open their mouths and imitate them.

Pronunciation and Breath Control:

While singing the words, do not take in breath in the middle of a word but sing a whole phrase in one breath.   Hence, take in sufficient air in your breath intake.  Let the air out slowly and gently, as the words are sung.  When words end in consonants, pronounce it as the sound ends.  If you do not do it, words like 'love' and 'nose' will sound like 'la' and 'no'.

Voice Balance:

In choral singing the soprano is sounds loudest and  that is why it is given the melody line.   Other parts should have a subordinate role and should be properly balanced.   Individual voices should not stand out, but the part should appear as if sung by one individual group.   Learn to listen to the other singers and adjust your volume, cons  consciously  to reproduce the correct sound leve






Bookmark with:    Digg Digg    reddit reddit    Facebook Facebook    StumbleUpon StumbleUpon    Newsvine Newsvine



WOW MOM - Please send this link to your friends in Mumbai.

Hair Accessories, Snap Clips, Bobby Pins, and creative stuff. Visit my page - Click on the Pic - -------------------------------------

Artwork For SALE

Artwork By Ruchi - Please send this link to your friends in Mumbai.

Art by Ruchi Pais - Contact: 9821611343 Mumbai Click on the Picture ------------------------------

Face Book Badge



Walter J. Pais

Mangalorean Recipes Facebook Page


Who's Online

We have 512 guests online

Google Ad 3 CLICK

Google Ad: Click

Mangalorean Recipes Facebook Group

I invite you to join our group on Face Book. Click the picture

Ranjit and Ruchi Pais, Hair Stylists

Mumbai's Trendiest Cuts Ranjit and Ruchi now operate from Goa. Call them for appointments. Timings: 9:30am - 9:30pm Call +919821611343 for appointments Click on the picture below:

Google AD 2: Click

Web Links

Links: Find other websites of interest here. Create your account and post a Web Link of your own. Click on the link below

HTML Module Ad 4