2. Acoustics and Resonance

Acoustics and Resonance with Ken Bozeman


Kenneth Bozeman, tenor, Frank C. Shattuck Professor of Music at Lawrence University Conservatory of Music in Appleton, Wisconsin, holds performance degrees from Baylor University and the University of Arizona. He subsequently studied at the State Conservatory of Music in Munich, Germany on a fellowship from Rotary International. He joined the Lawrence Conservatory faculty in 1977, teaching voice and first year music theory.  He was appointed chair of the voice department in 1993, and began teaching voice science and pedagogy. Mr. Bozeman has received both of Lawrence University’s Teaching Awards (Young Teacher Award, 1980; Excellence in Teaching Award, 1996). He was awarded the Van Lawrence Fellowship by the Voice Foundation in 1994 for his interest in voice science and pedagogy and is the chair of the editorial board of the NATS Journal of Singing. His students have sung with opera companies including Houston Grand, Boston Lyric, Opera Colorado, Washington, Wolf Trap, Seattle, Deutsche Oper Berlin, New York City, San Francisco, Chicago Lyric, the Metropolitan, and Santa Fe.

He has been a frequent presenter at voice science conferences and universities, and written a number of articles on the topics of voice acoustics (Choral Journal, Journal of Singing, Logopedics Phoniatrics Vocology, VoicePrints) and two books, Practical Vocal Acoustics:  Pedagogic Applications for Teachers and Singers and Kinesthetic Voice Pedagogy:  Motivating Acoustic Efficiency. Mr. Bozeman has been a featured presenter on voice acoustics at the 2012, 2014, 2018, and 2020 NATS conventions, and was twice selected to be a master teacher for the NATS Intern Program, in 2013 and in 2017. He was the feature speaker for the NATS Winter Workshop in 2015 and the NATS online chat in January of 2016.  He is recognized internationally as a leading specialist in applied vocal acoustic pedagogy, giving presentations at the Voice Foundation, the Pan European Voice Conference, Physiology and Acoustics of Singing, Ars Choralis, and the Pan American Vocology Association. He leads an annual week-long summer workshop on acoustic pedagogy with colleagues Ian Howell and Chadley Ballantyne at the new England Conservatory of Music. He was inducted into the American Academy of Teachers of Singing in 2019.

Mr. Bozeman was an active recitalist and performer of oratorio, singing the tenor roles in the St. Matthew and St. John Passions, the Christmas Oratorio, the B Minor Mass, the Magnificat, and various cantatas of Bach, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Creation, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Vaughn Williams’ Hodie. He has performed with the Milwaukee Symphony, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, the Green Lake Music Festival, the Purgatory Music Festival of Colorado, the Louisville Bach Society, the Historical Keyboard Society of Wisconsin, and on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Live from the Elvehjem.”

For more information, see his personal website: https://faculty.lawrence.edu/bozemank/


Course Description:  This course will cover pedagogically relevant basics of psychoacoustics, the relationships between the physiology and biomechanics of vocal anatomy with the voice source, the vocal tract filter, and the acoustic interactions between source and filter. A case will be made for acoustic registration, explain the relationship between laryngeal registers and acoustic registers, and understand how their interactions can create beneficial, interactive feedback loops that improve overall efficiency. It will explore how vowels and timbre are perceived, conceived, and constructed, why timbre and somatosense necessarily migrate with pitch change, and why knowing, allowing, and facilitating those migrations enable smooth dynamic registration and efficient resonance across range. 

Course Goals and Learning Objectives:  Upon completion of the course the student will: 

  • Understand the basics of how humans process sung sounds 
  • Know what is required from the voice source as a basis for improving its function 
  • Understand the role of vocal tract resonances in forming vowels from the spectral input of the source 
  • Know the basics of acoustic registration:  what happens where, why, and how acoustically across range by vowel 
  • Understand the necessary acoustic parallels and differences between treble and non-treble voices 
  • Have strategies for training skill in resonance tuning

About the Courses:

The courses are asynchronous, and you can start them at any time. Once you begin the course, you will have 3 months to complete all of the modules and assignments. You will not be able to extend the duration of a course once you begin. 

Each course is about 10 hours of content, with a quiz after each module, and 3 assignments that are due at various points in the course.

In order to receive the Distinguished Voice Professional Certificate (DVP), you will need to pass all of the courses with a B- (80) or higher.

You are encouraged to take the courses in the order they are listed, as they each build in content. However, it is not required.

Each course is $300 for NYSTA members and $350 for non-members. You must be signed in as a member in order to purchase the course at the member rate.

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