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West Midlands Barbershop Harmony Club

Submitted by John Eardley on Tue, 29/03/2016 - 11:36

Originally submitted by George Badland on Wed, 15/07/2015

Pappano's Classical Voices is a series of programmes on the TV at the moment that was mentioned last evening. The subject matter and the manner in which it is dealt, is both highly entertaining and very surprisingly in my case, educational.


I would never normally watch such programmes because of my hitherto misguided thought that what we do as barbershoppers, and what classical singers do, have nothing whatsoever in common.

How wrong can one be.


Having stumbled upon the fist programme, which was about the soprano voice, I was almost immediately captivated by the presenter 'Pappano's enthusiasm, obvious musical and performing knowledge and perhaps more surprisingly, to hear constant utterancees of very familiar words. Words and phrases like  'singing through the mask', ' head and chest voice'  'legato singing', 'Flat and tall vowels.' 'breath support' 'resonance' and many more.


He speaks about the essential requirement to 'get inside the story the singer is trying to communicate', the importance of warming up. In short the whole vocabulary of words we are familiar with that are spoken by our barbershop coaches.


He interviews only the very top performers in the operatic field and shows clips from the past greats in each voice part. The live interviewees alway pass on their 'tricks' of their trade. Facinating stuff


The programmes I have watched since the first 'soprano voice' one have been on the voices 'tenor' and 'mezzo soprano', next week the voices will be about the bass and baritone.I can thoroughly recommend that you watch it.


The programme is, I think on BBC 4 and is entitled 'Pappano's Classical Voices. Incidentally he is a conductor at, I think, Covent Garden.


If anyone can add more specific details, please do so.