The Choir Parents' Handbook

since it is the most covered of musical sounds and, therefore, produces more harmonious overtones when sounding. It is the easiest means of training a new choirboy to a point of being able to hear the development of tone. However, it is not my desire that the headtone alone be the sound which our organization produces.

There is the other ingredient which we ultimately inject into the choirboys' training, that being the mask-tone. This is a sound which is projected forward into the frontal cavities of the head. This placement produces a sound which certainly does not contain the potentials of overtone that can be found in head production but, rather, it produces a brilliant penetrating type quality which may be heard without difficulty in our modern concert halls. Under the proper misconceptions of understanding by an unaware choir master and sufficient energies misused by the choir boys, a rather remarkable electronic-like sound can be produced. Regardless of the sound this frontal technique is infinitely better and more successful in the matters of diction.

We have felt that in the past years' observation that there were distinct advantages in both of these systems. In this we are able to duplicate what we feel is one of the most thrilling sounds of boy choir. The choirboy who masters the technique of head production will learn that there is great freedom to be found in correct singing. He learns that tone quality is foremost to the singer. Through the choirboy's understanding, the head quality is gradually brought forward into the mask of the head in order to produce a brilliant tone quality.



Chapter Seven


(Taken from a speech by George Bragg before
the Fifth District Convention, Texas State
Teachers' Association.)

To begin our orientation program for the yearly group of newcomers, it is first of all necessary to establish interest, both in music and Boy Choir. This is stimulated at first by the boy's participation in competitive auditions each year for the places available in the Boy Choir. By stories from music, as well as challenging questions pertaining to these stories, a means of further introduction to the greater aspects of music is accomplished. It is vitally necessary that the choirboy understands also the heritage of the field in



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This page was last modified on 06 December 2005