Sinead O’Connor, She Moved Through the Fair
Sample Response III
How is character created in the vocal part of this work?
- the vocal part, which delivers the main melodic line establishes a relaxed yet longing character through the medium-high register, which sounds to be comfortable and thus relaxed in the lower range, however is more forced as the pitch increases, underlining the sense of longing
Jenn Gillan: It might be worth acknowledging a change in character from __ to __ which is created by this change in register and tone colour from ___ to ___
- the slight use of vibrato at the beginning of the piece, which is then used more frequently as the piece progresses, assists in creating a sense of wistfulness
Jenn Gillan: Expand on vibrato. Yes it exists but describe it. Is it broad, wide, tight, narrow, changing – getting faster or slower, does it stay the same? Where is it used in the phrase? At the end/beginning/middle? Well done for acknowledging some trends (more frequent use as the piece progresses)
- the thin and airy tone colour of the vocalist in what sounds to be a new section of the piece where she sings at a piano dynamic underscores further the wistful character
Jenn Gillan: Good locating your example. Clear link to character though mentioning the piano – does this enhance this? The question is about the voice. Talking about interaction with the piano might be worthwhile but you would need to expand on your answer more.
- the sudden attack of notes at the beginning of phrases emphasises a feeling of desperation and longing within the piece, whilst the gradual decay of notes through drawn-out decrescendos at the end of phrases assists in providing a sense of calm
Jenn Gillan: Any influences or techniques used worth mentioning?
- (a contour diagram was drawn)
the repetitive rising and falling melodic contour contributes to the yearning character of the piece
Jenn Gillan: Nice to use diagams. Does rising and falling equal yearning? I’m not 100% convinced. Maybe combine this example with something else to strengthen it.
- The even and regular phrasing of the vocal melody assists in underpinning the sense of calm within the except
- The contrast between the more nasal tone colour of the vocalist at the beginning of the excerpt, established through the mezzo-forte – forte dynamic, and the airy tone colour created by the piano dynamic highlights the longing yet calm character
Jenn Gillan: Again, maybe saying that the character changes or intensifies might enhance your response? Overall some solid examples. Some of your links were a little tenuous but others were much clearer. Try to cover all expressive devices when discussing an open question such as this.