The themed issue ‘Posthuman Voices: Channels Across Time and Shared Memories’ was curated by the brilliant Francesco Bentivegna and Sophia Edlund, and is part of the 10-year anniversary of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Voice Studies.
decolonizing the algorithm towards a distinct Southern American voice (Paola Torres Núñez del Prado);
AI voices between posthumanism and anthropocentrism (Domenico Napolitano);
composing with cetaceans and countering human exceptionalism through practical zoömusicology (Alex South);
a speculative/ecological exploration of vocal thelxis through devising with seashells (Sophia Edlund);
sympoietic vocal practice (Ute Wassermann);
autobiographic vocal performance through a synthetic clone of one’s voice (Jaume Ferrete-Vázquez);
and cybernetic animisn (K. Allado-McDowell and Francesco Bentivegna)
& the issue concludes with reviews of Norie Neumark’s (Milla Tiainen) and Liz W. Faber’s (by Bentivegna) books.
Feel free to peruse issue 7.1!
Francesco and Sophia’s poetic, provocative editorial is free-access:
• A series of videos by Archibald Rees, Oded Ben-Tal and Caroline Wilkins; Ditte Berkeley-Schultz and Electa Behrens; Ben Spatz; and Elisabeth Belgrano on the journal’s Homepage: https://www.intellectbooks.com/journal-of…
This study reflects on what it would mean to take opera’s decisive attribute—voice—as the foundation of its staged performance. The book thinks of staging through the medium of voice. It is a nuances exploration, which brings together scholarly and directorial interpretations, and engages in detail with less frequently performed works of major and influential 20th-century artists—Erik Satie, Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill—as well as exposes readers to an innovative experimental work of Evelyn Ficarra and Valerie Whittington. The study is intertwined throughout with the author’s staging of the works accessible online.
This book will be of great interest to students and scholars in voice studies, opera, music theatre, musicology, directing, performance studies, practice-based research, theatre, visual art, stage design, and cultural studies.
Further information on the book series and its companion website can be found at:
‘Magnat notes that the “non-verbal, non-semantic, non-discursive material and affective efficacy of vocality” is under-theorized in Performance Studies. Her book is a corrective gesture, providing a complex engagement with vocality “with a particular focus on orally transmitted vocal traditions” common among Indigenous nations and in communities facing various forms of hegemonic power.We were impressed by the breadth of Magnat’s research which brings together elements of quantum physics, sound theory, anthropology, philosophy, the work of Grotowski as well as the research of Indigenous scholars in many fields to elucidate what happens in and through vocality and especially in the sharing of songs in language inherited from ancestors. Building on empirical research conducted in collaboration with Indigenous and settler participants who shared songs while being hosted by Indigenous collaborators on their territories, Magnat reflects on what the embodied practice of vocalizing activates in those who sing and those who witness them.
We were equally impressed by Magnat’s methodology which models what Anishinaabe scholar Jill Carter calls a “relational shift” toward the creation of truly respectful and dialogical conversations between Western and Indigenous ontologies, epistemologies and methodologies. From the creation of an Indigenous Advisory Committee to ensure best practices to Magnat’s self-reflective engagement with her ancestors, be they familial in Occitania, a region of France with its own distinct culture and language, or academic (Magnat was trained in and is a scholar of the Grotowski tradition and French theory), [she] models decolonizing scholarship in important ways.’
Award Committee: Henry Bial, University of Kansas (chair); Julie Burelle, UC-San Diego; Shane Vogel, Yale University.
The American Theatre and Drama Society’s John W. Frick Book Award honors the best monograph published each year on theatre and performance of/in the Americas, recognizing that notions of “America” and the United States encompass migrations of peoples and cultures that overlap and influence one another.
The Centre for Interdisciplinary Voice Studies congratulates Prof Magnat on this wonderful achievement!
Barker, Paul (2015), ‘With One Voice: Disambiguating Sung and Spoken Voices through a Composer’s Experience’, in K. Thomaidis and B. Macpherson (eds), Voice Studies: Critical Approaches to Process, Performance and Experience, London & New York: Routledge, pp.xvi-xxvi.
Belgrano, Elisabeth (2016), ‘Vocalizing Nothingness: (Re)configuring Vocality Inside the Spacetime of Ottavia’, Journal of Interdisciplinary Voice Studies, 1:2, pp. 183-195. https://doi.org/10.1386/jivs.1.2.183_1
Belgrano, Elisabeth (2021), ‘Mapping the Burden of Vocality: French Seventeenth-Century Vocal Lamentations, Japanese Meditation and Somatic Intra-Action’, in Christina Kapadocha (ed.), Somatic Voices in Performance Research and Beyond, London & New York: Routledge, pp.171-184.
Bentivegna, Francesco (2017), ‘THE ART OF VOICE SYNTHESIS SYMPOSIUM, AMSTERDAM, 11–13 MAY 2016 http://www.artificialvoice.nl/: A Review’, Journal of Interdisciplinary Voice Studies, 2:1, pp.79-81. https://doi.org/10.1386/jivs.2.1.79_5
Cavarero, Adriana, Thomaidis, Konstantinos & Pinna, Ilaria (2018), ‘Towards a hopeful plurality of democracy: An interview on vocal ontology with Adriana Cavarero’, Journal of Interdisciplinary Voice Studies, 3:1, pp. 81-93. https://doi.org/10.1386/jivs.3.1.81_1
Edlund, Sophia & Hannigan, Barbara (2019), ‘A Singer’s Perspective on Sirens and Singing: An Interview with Coloratura Soprano/Conductor Barbara Hannigan’, Journal of Interdisciplinary Voice Studies, 4:1, pp.101-110. https://doi.org/10.1386/jivs.4.1.101_1
Magnat, Virginie (2020), ‘Exploring (K)new Paradigms’, in Virginie Magnat, The Performative Power of Vocality, London & New York: Routledge, pp.124-186.
Neumark, Norie (2015), ‘Enchanted Voices: Voice in Australian Sound Art’, in K. Thomaidis and B. Macpherson (eds), Voice Studies: Critical Approaches to Process, Performance and Experience, London & New York: Routledge, pp.132-145.
Posthuman Voice: educating and training voices in practices of well-being together
A virtual interdisciplinary symposium (Zoom)
Friday 16th – Saturday 17th July 2021
Registration is now open for the Posthuman Voice symposium, taking place online (Zoom) on the 16th and 17th July. This interdisciplinary symposium is organised by postgraduate researchers at the University of Exeter. The programme includes presentations on whale song; on octopus consciousness; on posthuman pedagogy and reflective practice; on field recording as a political practice and on voice cloning and more. You are invited to attend and to participate in the cross-disciplinary discussion which will follow each presentation.
This activity is a Researcher-Led Initiative funded by the University of Exeter Researcher Development and Research Culture team.
4. We curated a series of blogs for Theatre, Dance and Performance Training, as part of the 1-year anniversary of the Special Issue ‘What is New in Voice Training?’, with entries by Petronilla Whitfield, Anna-Helena McLean, Charulatha Mani, Francesco Bentivegna, Faye Rigopoulou, Sarah-Holden Boyd, Sophia Edlund, Chan E. Park, Luis Aros, Margaret Pikes, Patrick Campbell and Masi Asare:
5. We organized the ‘Vicarious Vocalities’ conference, with thought-provoking contributions by Merrie Snell, Jacob Bird, Anne Tarvainen, Francesca Millar, Kiranmayi Indraganti, Ian Wilkie, Sam Fouts, Freya Jarman, Solimar Otero, Marie Bennett, Jan Creutzenberg, Jennifer O’Meara, Francesco Bentivegna, Clare Parkinson, Eleanor Russell, Melissa Morton, and Kit Danowski.
[This is part of the Aural/Oral Dramaturgies stunning website – please explore in full!]
c) a roundtable on ‘Voice and Well-being’, facilitated by Virginie Magnat, Michael Elliott and Sasha Covacs, with fellow voice practitioners Gey Pin Ang, Anna-Helena McLean, Christina Shewell and Rena Sharon: https://youtu.be/XPIXFiqRfqk
This has been an incredibly tough year, and we are deeply grateful to all authors, artists, collaborators and voicers for their generosity, thoughtfulness and patience. Yes, we are all overwhelmed with caring responsibilities, sustaining teaching and supporting our brilliant UG students and PG colleagues, under extraordinary circumstances, and, although it takes longer to respond, we always look forward to our continuing exchange.
Thank you for your groundbreaking work, thank you for your trust.
And we very much look forward to celebrating World Voice Day 2022 in the same studio or conference room.
As 2020 is drawing to a close, we are welcoming a new title to Routledge Voice Studies. Owning Our Voices: Vocal Discovery in the Wolfsohn-Hart Tradition by Margaret Pikes and Patrick Campell offers a unique, first-hand account of working within the Wolfsohn-Hart tradition of extended voice work by Margaret Pikes, an acclaimed voice teacher and founder member of the Roy Hart Theatre.
This dynamic publication fuses Pikes’ personal account of her own vocal journey as a woman within this, at times, male-dominated tradition, alongside an overview of her particular pedagogical approach to voice work, and is accompanied by digital footage of Pikes at work in the studio with artist-collaborators and written descriptions of scenarios for teaching. For the first time, Margaret Pikes’ uniquely holistic approach to developing the expressive voice through sounding, speech, song and movement has been documented in text and on film, offering readers an introduction to both the philosophy and the practice of Wolfsohn-Hart voice work.
Owning Our Voices is a vital book for scholars and students of voice studies and practitioners of vocal performance: it represents a synthesis of a life’s work exploring the expressive potential of the human voice, illuminating an important lineage of vocal training, which remains influential to this day.
Margaret Pikes is a founding member of the Roy Hart Theatre who trained with Roy Hart and participated in all of the Roy Hart Theatre’s early experimental performances. She has been teachingthe Wolfsohn-Hart approach to vocal expression internationally for more than 50 years and regularly leads workshops in the UK, France and Germany.
Patrick Campbell is Senior Lecturer in Drama and Contemporary Performance at Manchester Metropolitan University. He is a core member of Cross Pollination, an expanded, nomadic laboratory for the dialogue in-between practices, and is Associate Editor of the Brazilian Journal on Presence Studies.