Olga Heikkilä

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Research

Doctoral project: À tour de Pierrot Lunaire – Demarcation ofsinging and speaking

The concert series consists of five concerts from five different perspectives on Sprechgesang and is tightly connected to my research work. The artistic aspects are:

1) Roots of Sprechgesang in the 18th century French and German Cabaret tradition

2) Development of Spechgesang in the works by Avantgarde composers

3) Pierrot Lunaire and flourishing of Sprechgesang as an Art Form

4) Sprechgesang in the opera repertoire

5) Commissioned works that explore Sprechgesang of our time

The issue of my written thesis is “Demarcation of Singing and Speaking: A Guide for Classical Singers and Voice Professionals”. I limit my research to cover the 20th century vocal music where speech is used in expressive way. Key concepts are: Sprechgesang, Sprechstimme, Sprechmelodie, declamation, recitation. Within this framework, I examine the interfaces between speech and song from the physiological point of view and more practically from the artist's starting point. The source materials for my research are printed works on the subject by singers, academics and composers from the beginning of the 20th century until our time. As a result of my research there will be published a separate teaching publication in English.

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