Portugal versus Bulgaria: To what extent do they share vocal characteristics focusing on the songs of Dulce Pontes and Pirin vocal music.

Essay by verycrazygirl December 2004

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As a singer I am very interested in different vocal techniques, especially those found in world music. This was the great influence on the music I chose for this piece of research. I live in Portugal therefore it is inevitable that I came in contact with one singer in particular - Dulce Pontes. This singer is currently famous in Portugal for her strong and beautiful, soulful interpretation of Fado. Her singing has often been called a worthy successor of the great Amália Rodrigues. The study of world music also brought me into contact with Bulgarian vocal music. This genre has always captured my attention in an uncanny way due to its dissonant ambiguities, which sound so rich and pure.

The songs I focused on in this investigation are "Achegate a mim Maruxa", "As Sete Mulheres do Minho" and "Tirioni" by Dulce pontes. The Bulgarian songs are from the Pirin Region, which have their own particularities.

Sung by the Pirin National Folk Ensemble "Kakvo e tsvete tsufnalo" and "Pismo ti e doshlo" Will be the songs used to contrast the two vocal techniques. This essay comprises of a comparison between a selection of Portuguese singer Dulce Ponte's pieces and Traditional Bulgarian, Pirin vocal music in order to explore possible connections between the two genres, with emphasis on vocal techniques. This is done by exploring the use of structure, technical details and relevant contextuality. The organisation of the essay is as follows:

Chapter I. Chapter I focuses on the analysis of each song with special emphasis on vocal techniques used in all three Dulce Pontes songs and the two Pirin Ensembles.

Chapter II. This chapter centres on the analysis of the music in terms of structure, technical details and relevant contextuality.

Chapter III. Chapter three discusses the information present in...