The Editor’s Desk

The Seventh Biennial Bach Vocal Competition for American Singers

March 16, 2012

The Bach Choir of Bethlehem and the American Bach Society announce the seventh biennial competition for American singers with special interest in the music of J. S. Bach.

On May 6, 2012, ten finalists will appear before a panel of distinguished judges and a live audience in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

The First Prize winner chosen by the judges on that day will receive a career development grant of $3,000 and a solo performing opportunity with The Bach Choir of Bethlehem and Greg Funfgeld, Artistic Director & Conductor, in a future season.

Read more…

TCV Turns One Today… Our Most Popular Posts from 2011

January 1, 2012

One year ago today, The Countertenor Voice published its first issue.  We have published around sixty articles on vocal technique and the singing life, as well as in depth reviews of recordings and artists.  THANKS TO EVERYONE who has read, shared, and commented on these pieces. Extra special thanks to my team of writers (Oliver Camacho, Nicholas Tamagna, Bryan DeSilva, Henry Lebedinsky, Tai Oney, Frank Richards, and Dr. Peter Hennen).  What a nice little countertenor community we have formed here :-) .

I want to re-share our top five most popular articles from 2011.  Maybe you missed them the first time around, maybe you will enjoy re-reading them now that some time has passed.

To all our readers across the internet world, happy new year, and best wishes for 2012.

Now go practice.

Seriously… go now… :-)

Read more…

Happy Holidays from TCV

December 21, 2011

Hello Dear Readers,

We have been hibernating for the past month or so, but will return in force mid-January with more articles and reviews!  Many thanks to those of you who have posted and responded to comments on our articles (Todd Gregory, I might be looking at you…)

You will find a little present in the form of my latest piece about performing, Some Thoughts on the Nature of Stage Fright, a.k.a How to Stand and Deliver.  I hope that it gives all you singers something to think about over break, and renews your commitment to the art of live performance.

As always, facebook and twitter shares are better than gifts this year :-) .



Welcome Back, and a Call for Articles

May 12, 2011

Thank you for joining our us for our sixth issue! Many of you out there are coming to the end of your academic year. If you have written pieces that you think would be appropriate for this publication (or if you suddenly have time on your hands!) be in touch through the contact page. We would love to bring your writing to our large audience.

For next month we are working on an article about the seismic economic/structural shift taking place in the classical music business, and another piece covering the use of social media in a classical musician’s career. We’ll also bring you more reviews, videos, and blog posts.

We hope you enjoy this month’s articles and youtube videos. As always, please spread the word!


Saint Thomas Fifth Ave NYC Has a Rare Alto Job Opening

April 12, 2011

The Choir of Men and Boys of Saint Thomas Fifth Ave, one of the only truly full-time choral organizations in the USA, has posted the rare job opening for a male alto. Five weekly services plus an active concert and recording schedule will keep you singing in the heart of Manhattan.

Please send inquiries to, attention Ms. Laurel Unwin. Attach a CV and MP3 (optional) to the email (and let her know you read about it here!)

Good luck!

Read more…

Welcome to Our “Get Organized” Issue

March 1, 2011

The budding trees are certainly confused here in Philadelphia. After a long and bitterly cold winter (my favorite forecast involved the phrase “destructive ice”), our spirits were briefly lifted by a week of 50-65 degree February weather (that’s 10-18 Celsius for our international friends). Weather like that towards the end of Winter (of course, it snowed a few days later) fills me with the sort of hope that produces long and generally completed to-do lists, mad spurts of paper filing, and a general sense that the complexities of life and my professional career could be tamed if I just had the right system…

This month we bring you articles and posts related to how singers (students, pre-professionals, and professionals alike) can get organized, stay organized, and set the kinds of priorities that create successful careers. We feature an artist-relevant introduction to the productivity system Getting Things Done, a primer on managing freelance income, and a personal account of the perils of putting off until tomorrow what could be done today!

Also this month: A zesty (I do enjoy Oliver’s food metaphors) multimedia review of Franco Fagioli’s Sophomore CD, and an impressive display of breath energy management by Spanish countertenor Carlos Mena.

You may also notice that we have begun selling advertising space; I hope that these ads will help support this project without being too visually distracting!

Thanks for joining us. Leave a comment and repost our articles on Facebook and Twitter if you like them.


Welcome to Our Second Issue

February 1, 2011

Snow be damned, we have managed to pull together our sophomore issue! And what an issue we have for you.  Nature’s Way:  Vocal Production in Social Context by Dr. Peter Hennen, and my article, How to Handle Spelling Händel, cover topics close to the countertenor experience. Dr. Hennen’s article is particularly fascinating, addressing the historical phenomenon of high male singing through the lens of societal gender norms. This is pretty ground breaking stuff. Guest reviewer Frank Richards offers a thorough review of Clerestory’s debut studio CD, Night Draws Near, complete with audio samples. And we launch a new series called A Day in the Life… Since most singers are struggling to build a career in one way or another, I think that the sharing our own stories, tips, and shortcuts will help to raise community standards, and lower our collective sense of frustration and isolation. This month, we introduce you to a young countertenor studying at Temple University in Philadelphia. Poke through the rest of our posts this month, check out what you missed last month, and as always, please share what you like with your friends through facebook.

Take care,

Ian Howell

Announcing a New Competition for Countertenors

February 1, 2011

In the latest sign that the Countertenor voice type has achieved widespread acceptance, I am happy to pass along that a Swiss organization has created a competition specifically for countertenors! Someone ponied up a significant number of euros to fund the first ever Gianni Bergamo Classic Music Award 2011: Countertenor Competition.

Read more…

The Editor’s Desk: Welcome

January 1, 2011

Hello and thank you for joining us as we officially launch The Countertenor Voice: An Online Journal. Together with our parent company, Counterpoints Publishing LLC, we at the journal are excited to bring you our first installment of articles and reviews. In this month’s online journal, Oliver reviews Jaroussky, I broach the subject of whether the countertenor sound is as tied to the Anglican and early music movements as it used to be (and we invite you to take a quick survey on the subject), we listen to a fierce Polish contralto, and we introduce our initial offering of scores for purchase and download.

Read more…

The Countertenor Voice: An Online Journal

November 23, 2010

Welcome to The Countertenor Voice – By Countertenors, For Countertenors

Our inaugural post…

You can feel it, right… that ‘tingle on the back of your neck’ sense that something big is about to happen in the countertenor world? Perhaps you are an aspiring countertenor looking for appropriate repertory, technical resources, or an online community to help answer your questions? You might be a voice teacher trying to understand how to work with a countertenor, or maybe like us, you are a professional performer in search of a curious community. There is certainly a good deal of misinformation out there about what countertenors do and how they do it, and we are here to be a source of clarity and information for all. [...]