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Arrangement characteristics

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  • Tim Buell
    I have heard that when Men s barbershop arrangements are done for women, some of the parts need to be re-voinced, and the key needs to be changed, but I have
    Message 1 of 4 , Dec 1, 2006
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      I have heard that when Men's barbershop arrangements are done for
      women, some of the parts need to be re-voinced, and the key needs to be
      changed, but I have never seen an adequate explanation for what actual
      changes need to be made and more importantly why specific things are
      done. I have daughters, and have been working with their High School
      choral teacher to introduce barbershop to the students, both male and
      female and I would like to know the answers when asked. Maybe someone
      could help? Actually, it sounds like a perfect topic for the Wiki
      page.

      Tim Buell
      Lead
      Heart of Maryland Chorus
    • Frank Leitnaker
      Depends somewhat on the key and certainly upon the vocal capabilities of the specific female group. In general, the total range of average female
      Message 2 of 4 , Dec 2, 2006
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        Depends somewhat on the key and certainly upon the vocal capabilities of the
        specific female group. In general, the total range of "average" female
        barbershoppers is somewhat less than that of their male counterparts which
        is why there tends to be more closed--within an octave--chords in female
        arrangements, fewer open--spread to the tenth-- and no spread--to two
        octaves--chords. Shifting the key up a fourth generally will accommodate
        the basses and leads but the tenors and baris may be pushed out of their
        respective ranges on some chords requiring revoicing. Sometimes it is
        necessary to include the bass note in the shuffle.

        According to the SAI "Arranger's Guide", the ranges of the average female
        barbershop singer as follows:

        Tenor: First to second F above middle C

        Lead: First A below and first C above middle C

        Bari: First G below to first B above middle C

        Bass: First D below to first F above middle C

        Note, the Bass and Bari lines in the Bass Clef are normally written an
        octave below that sung to avoid the excessive use of ledger lines. Thus, to
        make the chart technically correct, the octave shift symbol--a little figure
        eight--is placed atop the bass clef symbol.

        This is not the whole story but is probably adequate for your purposes

        Frank Leitnaker

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Tim Buell" <tpbuell@...>
        To: <bbshop@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Saturday, December 02, 2006 6:12 AM
        Subject: [bbshop] Arrangement characteristics


        >I have heard that when Men's barbershop arrangements are done for
        > women, some of the parts need to be re-voinced, and the key needs to be
        > changed, but I have never seen an adequate explanation for what actual
        > changes need to be made and more importantly why specific things are
        > done. I have daughters, and have been working with their High School
        > choral teacher to introduce barbershop to the students, both male and
        > female and I would like to know the answers when asked. Maybe someone
        > could help? Actually, it sounds like a perfect topic for the Wiki
        > page.
        >
        > Tim Buell
        > Lead
        > Heart of Maryland Chorus
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • Thomas R. Arneberg
        ... There are some collections of past Harmonet posts about this on the MHBQA web page: http://mixedbarbershop.com/ Specifically:
        Message 3 of 4 , Dec 2, 2006
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          > From: Tim Buell <tpbuell@...>
          > Date: Sat, Dec 02, 2006 at 05:12:53AM -0000:
          > Subj: [bbshop] Arrangement characteristics
          >
          > I have heard that when Men's barbershop arrangements are done for
          > women, some of the parts need to be re-voinced, and the key needs to be
          > changed, but I have never seen an adequate explanation for what actual
          > changes need to be made and more importantly why specific things are
          > done. I have daughters, and have been working with their High School
          > choral teacher to introduce barbershop to the students, both male and
          > female and I would like to know the answers when asked. Maybe someone
          > could help? Actually, it sounds like a perfect topic for the Wiki
          > page.

          There are some collections of past Harmonet posts about this on
          the MHBQA web page:

          http://mixedbarbershop.com/

          Specifically:

          http://mixedbarbershop.com/2a.tech.voicing.html
          http://mixedbarbershop.com/2b.tech.faq.html
          http://mixedbarbershop.com/2c.gsrange.html

          - Tom A. (HarmonetLite FAQ: http://arneberg.com/harmonet/lite)
          ----------------------------------------------------------------------
          ;-) I'd rather be ____ Thomas R. Arneberg | http://ChipsQuartet.com
          :-) singing in a |____| toma@... | Baritone, "CHIPS" quartet
          :-) Barbershop _| _| Cray Supercomputers| Former chapters: St. Paul,
          :-) Quartet! (_) (_) Chippewa Falls, WI | Denver, Portland, Hilltop
          ----------------------------------------------------------------------
        • David Wallace
          This isn t as tough as it sounds. Men typically sound best with a more open chord voicing in the mid-to-lower tessitura, tightening up as the range goes up. As
          Message 4 of 4 , Dec 2, 2006
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            This isn't as tough as it sounds.
            Men typically sound best with a more open chord voicing in the mid-to-lower tessitura, tightening up as the range goes up.
            As women are already singing toward the top of a range that sounds good with barbershop chords, they sound best with the chords "tighter" all the time.
            There are tons of exceptions: a men's quartet without a strong bass (or a particularly high lead) may keep things voiced up; a women's quartet with a particularly strong bass may take a bit of a risk and spread a few chords; an arranger may just be searching for a specific effect.
            This is not exclusive to barbershop: the tighter the voicing in a low range, the muddier the sound. SATB arrangers pay attention to this, too, as do good instrumental arrangers.
            In a generalized nutshell: the higher the melody, the tighter the voicing whether male or female.
            David Wallace
            Lead -- 1984 International Champions "The Rapscallions"
            Master Director -- "Heart of Ohio Chorus", (SAI)


            -----Original Message-----
            From: bbshop@yahoogroups.com [mailto:bbshop@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Tim Buell
            Sent: Saturday, December 02, 2006 12:13 AM
            To: bbshop@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [bbshop] Arrangement characteristics
            I have heard that when Men's barbershop arrangements are done for women, some of the parts need to be re-voinced, and the key needs to be changed, but I have never seen an adequate explanation for what actual changes need to be made and more importantly why specific things are done. I have daughters, and have been working with their High School choral teacher to introduce barbershop to the students, both male and female and I would like to know the answers when asked. Maybe someone could help? Actually, it sounds like a perfect topic for the Wiki page.
            Tim Buell
            Lead
            Heart of Maryland Chorus



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