The Tabernacle Choir Blog

A Hopeful New Study on How a Boy’s Voice Changes Over Time

You may recall the Brady Bunch episode called “Dough Re Mi” in which Peter Brady’s voice begins to crack while rehearsing a new song with his siblings. In the episode, Peter’s brother Greg decides to alleviate the situation by writing a new song called “Time to Change,” which was designed to mask the voice cracking—hence the word change

Many years ago, boys were told to stop singing once their voices changed and return to it when they were adults, as the male voice was considered to be “broken” once adolescence arrived. While it isn’t quite like that anymore, researchers at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and the Cincinnati Boychoir hope to make a voice breakthrough (pun intended). Christopher Eanes, artistic director of the Boychoir, said he hopes the study will discover how best to teach a boy to steer his voice through puberty.

According to a USA Today article, “About 20 choir members between age 5 and 11 will participate in the study, which will last for several years. They will undergo periodic examinations that will include speaking and singing in a sound booth and endoscopic examinations of their larynxes to monitor how the vocal cords thicken and thus deepen voices through adolescence.”

Surveys were sent to choir directors in an effort to collect their feedback on what they would like to learn from such a study of boys’ voices. The researchers received valuable responses from the lengthy survey. Christopher Eanes, artistic director of the Boychoir said, “It told us: Here are some of the things that people are concerned about, things that people are assuming are true but might not be."

For any boy aspiring to audition for The Tabernacle Choir from an early age, the future results of this study could give you an edge like nothing before. Below the Choir sings, “Where Is Love?”, which is sung by a young boy named Oliver Twist in the musical Oliver!

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