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Re: Choral singing

> > Whereas, for example, the fifths on the piano have all been slightly
> > stretched to make up for the pythagorean comma, in a choir they may be all
> > sung perfectly in tune, which is nevertheless flat in equal temperament.

 Let's just get the story straight here. A brief perusal of the ample
 scientific literature on intonation reveals that this widely held idea is a
 myth. Within-note variation in fundamental frequency of singers' voices,
 even in the very best ensembles and without noticeable vibrato, regularly
 exceeds a comma. There is no evidence that pure fifths are preferred by
 listeners or performers over equally tempered fifths, in performances
 where performers have real-time control over intonation.

 Richard Parncutt, Lecturer in Psychology of Music and Psychoacoustics,
 Unit for the Study of Musical Skill and Development, Keele University.
 Post: Dept of Psychology, Keele University, Staffordshire ST5 5BG, GB.
 Tel: 01782 583392. Email: r.parncutt@keele.ac.uk. Fax: 44 1782 583387.