Learning Intentions

  • To learn how human vocal cords work
  • To learn how other animals use vocalizations to communicate


Vocal Cords

Dr. Derek Hewitt: What is Videostroboscopy? (2:23)

Power to Sing – How Do Vocal Cords Work When You Sing? (5:40 – watch first 4:30 only)

VoxDoc – Stroboscopy: Normal Female Vocal Cords (1:02)

Vocal Range

The vocal range is “the span from the lowest to the highest note a particular voice can produce”.

The four main vocal types (from high pitch to low pitch) are soprano, alto, tenor, and bass.

Luciano Pavarotti, a famous tenor, recorded many songs with big pop stars.

Luciano Pavarotti, Bryan Adams – ‘O Sole Mio (Live) (3:18)

How Low Can You Go? Hear the World’s Deepest Voice (1:06)

Concert Hotels put together a chart of the vocal ranges of some top singers and vocalists.

Minnie Riperton (the actor Maya Rudolph’s mother) has a vocal range of 5 octaves, and was one of the first modern artists to use the whistle register. Mariah Carey and Ariana Grande are also known for their use of the whistle register.

Minnie Riperton – Lovin’ You (Official Video) (3:19)

Breaking Wine Glasses

MythBusters – Shattering Glass By Resonant Frequencies (3:06)

How I Broke a Wine Glass With My Voice (Using Science!) (10:30)


Animal Vocalizations

52 – The Loneliest Whale in the World Trailer (2:52)

Calls of a Fin Whale (2:38)