The Throaty Voice and Digastric Tensions

A throaty voice is unfit for the stage. It is wanting in elasticity, and therefore will often crack or break. It cannot execute with finish, and perfect clearness, and freedom of tone the crescendo or diminuendo. Singing in this manner is very laborious. The throat becomes quickly tired, and the singer exhausted. Hoarseness ensues, with lameness and aching of the throat. In the act of singing, the face grows red, and the neck is marked with swollen veins. More give up vocal practice altogether. The utter ruin of the voice by this mode of singing, especially with persons of delicate physique, is only a question of time.

The presence of the defect now under consideration, may always be detected, by simply feeling of the throat externally with a finger during the act of singing. If a sort of pigeon crop, or artificial double chin, is then formed by muscular compression just above the Adam’s apple, or larynx ; and if that part of the throat is then hard and stiff to the touch, instead of being relaxed and soft as when the voice is not used, then it may be safely asserted that the vocal organs are in the reversed or abnormal condition, and that the quality of the voice is more or less guttural, and, in addition, sometimes more or less wiry and harsh.

Pattou, Ange Albert. The Voice as an Instrument. E. Schuberth, 1878.

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