Ph.D. Neli Koycheva
Date: July 4th, 2020
Some historical facts of the
classical singing – part two
Thanks to the art school in Florence, the aesthetically criterion of singing are being
developed: singing should be “beautiful, melodious, have wide cantilena, and clearly
pronounced text. These requirements reached their peak with composers such as Alessandro
Scarlatti (1660-1720), and Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643). After then a headlong tendency
appeared, in which the vocal virtuosity was more significant, and the text was not so
important element in the song. As an example, in the Pergolesi (1710-1736) composer’s opera
“La Serva Padrona”, in which the important vocal element is the coloratura.
Nicola Porpora (1686-1768) – composer and teacher of singing in Neaples, whose most
famous singing students were the castrate: Farinelli, Kaffarelli and Porporino.
Farinelli can be considered as a first singer “superstar”.
Other students of Porpora were composers Johann
Adolf Hasse and Joseph Haydn. In Porpora’s school, apart
of the coloraturas in the scores, pointed out by the composer,
the singers have added more ornaments, passages, and
improvisations in order to demonstrate a brilliant technique.
Bologna was the other famous school of singing in the
17-18th century in Italy. The most famous names are Feri,
Tosi, and Konti. Pier Francesco Tosi (1653-1732) is a
remarkable singer, а castrate, and a famous vocal pedagogue,
teaching both: castrates and non castrates. He created
theoretical labor of correct and precise indications of the bel canto singers.
The Italian singing stile of the bel canto gets enormous growth in the 17th and 18th
century. It reached its peak in the castrato’s technique. The bel canto stile influenced on the
Throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th century, chronologically in Europe araised some
important groundworks , prepared by important singing teachers:
• Jean-Baptist Berar ( 1710-1772). L’art du chant, Paris, publ. 1755.
• Bernardo Mengozzi (1758-1800). Methode du chant du Conservatoire de Music.
• Alexis de Garaude (1779-1852). Methode de chant. Paris, 1809.
• Henric-Ferdinand Manschtein (1806-1872). Sisteme de la grande Methode de chant
de Bernacchi de Bologna, 1835.
• Gilbert-Luis Dupre (1806-1896). L’Arte del canto. Paris, 1846.
•Manuel Garcia-father (1775-1832) “Exercises
and Method of Singing with Accompaniment with the
•Manuel Garcia-son (1805-1906) “Traits complet
de l’art du chant. Paris”, 1855.
• Francesco Lamperti (1813-1892). L’Arte del
The authors which best describe the stile of bel canto singing are Manuel Garcia – father and son. Their works contain the best, most accurate,
detailed and fulfilled description on the ocal techniques.
They give the best base, upon which contemporary way of sing is build and refined.