The Child-Voice in Singing

Francis E. Howard
Child-Voice in Singing, by
Francis E. Howard

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Title: The Child-Voice in Singing treated from a physiological and a
practical standpoint and especially adapted to schools and boy choirs
Author: Francis E. Howard
Release Date: September 12, 2007 [EBook #22581]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ASCII

Produced by Louise Hope, Nada Prodanovic, David Newman, David
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[Transcriber's Note:

This text is intended for users whose text readers cannot use the "real"
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displayed have been "unpacked" and shown between braces:
[-a], [a:], [-e], [-I], [-o], [-U] ("long" vowels) [)a], [)e], [)i], [)oo]
("short" vowels)
The "flat" symbol is shown as {b}. Sharps are shown with the
"number" sign #.
In the printed text, all musical references--including single notes
showing pitch--were shown on a musical staff. In this e-text, these brief
passages are shown in brackets as [Music: e' e''], where c'-c'' is the
octave beginning at middle C. Durations are not significant and have
generally been omitted.
Within illustrations, text in {braces} was added by the transcriber.
Typographical errors are listed at the end of the e-text.]
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Treated From
A Physiological and a Practical Standpoint and Especially Adapted to
Schools and Boy Choirs
Supervisor of Music in the Public Schools and Choirmaster of St.
John's and Trinity Churches, Bridgeport, Conn.
New York: The H. W. Gray Co. Sole Agents For NOVELLO & CO.,
Ltd., London Made in the United States of America

Copyright, 1895 By F. E. HOWARD
Copyright, 1898 By NOVELLO, EWER & CO.
Copyright renewed, 1923

One of the most encouraging signs of the growth of musical taste and
understanding at the present time as regards the singing of children, is
the almost unanimous acquiescence of choirmasters, supervisors,
teachers, and others in the idea that children should sing softly, and
avoid loud and harsh tones; and the author ventures to hope that the
first edition of this book has helped, in a measure at least, to bring
about this state of opinion.
It is true that for a long time the art of training children's voices has
been well understood by choirmasters of vested choirs, and by many
others, but its basis was purely empirical.
Something more, however, than the dictum of individual taste and
judgment is needed to convince the educators of our schools of the
wisdom of any departure from established customs and practices. The
primary end, then, of the author has been to show a scientific basis for
the use of what is herein called the head-voice of the child, and to
adduce, from a study of the anatomy and physiology of the larynx and
vocal organs, safe principles for the guidance of those who teach
children to sing.
The conditions under which music is taught in schools call for an
appeal to the understanding first, and taste afterward. These conditions
First, the actual teaching of music is done by class-room or grade
teachers. The special teacher, who usually supervises also, visits each
room, it may be as often as once a week, but in most towns and cities
not oftener than once in three or four weeks. At any rate the class form

their ideals and habits from the daily lessons, which are given by their
grade teacher.
Second, these teachers in the great majority of cases acquire their
knowledge of music through teaching it, and must also, it can easily be
understood, develop a sense of discrimination in musical matters in the
same way. There is a strong natural tendency in the school-rooms to
emphasize the teaching of music, or teaching about music, as
contrasted with actual singing. The importance of using the voice
properly will not suggest itself to many teachers.
It is necessary, then, that this, which is the essence of all instruction in
vocal music, should be brought to the attention of the vast army of
instructors in our public schools in as convincing a way as is possible.
Now the best, and in fact the only way to secure the assent of our
educators to a new idea in school work, is to prove its truth. "It is
useless to dispute about tastes,"
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