The span of pitches that a singer can comfortably and effectively sing
Vocal range refers to the span of pitches that a singer can comfortably and effectively sing. It is determined by the highest and lowest notes that a singer can produce with ease and control. The vocal range of a singer is a key factor in determining their voice type.
There are generally four main voice types for classical singing:
- Soprano: The highest female voice type, with a vocal range typically extending from about C4 (middle C) to F6 or higher.
- Alto (or Contralto): The lowest female voice type, with a vocal range usually spanning from about G3 to E5 or lower.
- Tenor: The highest male voice type, with a vocal range typically covering from about C3 to B4 or higher.
- Bass: The lowest male voice type, with a vocal range generally ranging from about E2 to E4 or lower.
Within each voice type, there can be further subdivisions based on vocal qualities and specific ranges. For example, sopranos can be categorized as lyric sopranos, coloratura sopranos, or dramatic sopranos, each with slight variations in their vocal ranges and capabilities.
It's important to note that while certain vocal ranges are typical for each voice type, individual singers may have variations in their range due to factors such as vocal training, age, and vocal development. Proper vocal training and technique can also help expand a singer's vocal range and improve their overall vocal ability.