By  | July 7, 2011 | 1 Comment | Filed under:

Edited by American countertenor Ian Howell, The Countertenor Voice is here to provide:

  1. Useful technical information to singing students and their teachers through our vocal technique series,
  2. General information about countertenor history and research through our features,
  3. Thorough reviews of recordings featuring countertenors,
  4. And support and encouragement to young singers through our A Day in the Life… blog.

We believe:

  1. The countertenor voice is a legitimate choice within the classical music voice categorization system.  It is capable of beauty, expressivity, and longevity similar to any other classical voice type.
  2. Countertenors are neither exclusively born nor made; any man can learn to better his countertenor voice.
  3. Though there are currently more high-quality countertenors than at any other time in modern history, much work needs to be done to raise both the quality level of countertenors and audience awareness of what a high-quality countertenor is.  Countertenors should not receive a ‘free pass’ to perform poorly because of the diminished expectations associated with the voice type.
  4. While there are many similarities between general optimal voice technique and optimal countertenor technique, there are some specific differences that must be examined.
  5. We believe in illuminating what the human voice is capable of, not just what has been done in the past.  This is the standard we will apply when reviewing scientific studies and pedagogy books.
  6. Words matter; we hope to help standardize the terminology used to describe a healthy technical approach to singing as a countertenor.

The Countertenor Voice is a production of Counterpoints Publishing, LLC., a company in the process of preparing countertenor appropriate scores for sale online. Stay tuned for more information about that.

We welcome you to browse our past issues, comment on what we write, share our articles through facebook and twitter, and join our unobtrusive and secure e-mail list. We publish monthly (on or near the 1st of the month) and have been online since November of 2010.

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Ian Howell is a countertenor based in Boston, Massachusetts. He regularly performs as a concert and operatic soloist all across North America and writes from time to time. He was educated at Yale and Capital Universities, sang with Chanticleer from 2000-04, and is currently a Doctor of Musical Arts student at the New England Conservatory of Music. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook.


  • Sevak

    I’m so glad I found this source. It’s been my dream to sing as a countertenor and be on the stage. I so far couldn’t find a teacher that’d be able to teach and guide me well. The last one totally discouraged me saying I’m a nice tenor and there’s nothing special about countertenors (she was an old lady with some prejudice, I suspect). 

    Hopefully I’ll find some guidance and directions here :)