Research

Soul is currently doing a PhD in composition at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire under the supervision of Dr Joe Cutler, Howard Skempton and Pedagogy specialist Luan Shaw.

Focusing on composing quarter-tonally for voices, she is researching the creation of a new quarter-tonal compositional language which will be suitable for both instruments and voices. As not much research has been done in regards to how quarter-tonal singing can be most easily taught to singers, her research will include the creation of a step-by-step system designed to help singers learn to hear and pitch quarter-tones. This system will contain listening exercises, singing exercises, and studies for different quarter-tonal singing levels, aiming at singers at conservatoire / university level and above. 

The website dedicated to the progress achieved in the microtonal singing research is www.microtonalsinging.com,

which will start operating very soon, starting out as a blog and developing into a website where more and more singers will gradually be able to take part in the research, testing the step-by step system and providing feedback.

If you'd like to get involved in the research or are researching a similar topic, please get in touch by emailing Soul at soul.zisso@mail.bcu.ac.uk

© Yfat Soul Zisso

Most photos by Anthony Leung

Octopus drawing by Erica Sinclair

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