The vocal ranges of singers- male and female

Posted on Jul 16, 2014 in FAQ's, Music Instruction, Resources, Vocal Lessons | 0 comments

Often I am asked for clarification on vocal ranges: The classifications that identify the male and female ranges of singers. The chart below outlines the high and low pitches in each vocal range- male and then female.

There exists three “academic” range identifications for males- and three for females.  In ascending order, the Bass is the lowest male voice followed by Baritone and then Tenor.  Alto then begins the lowest female voice followed by Mezzo (middle) Soprano and then Soprano.

You will see from the chart below the deepest bass, Basso Profundo, is included as a category;  it is known historically as the “deep” Bass. Today, Profundo is rolled into Bass as one distinctive category. In similar fashion, Contralto is combined now within Alto  as one category.  These categorical terms below are used most often within a choral setting, but are still very useful overall as vocal terms to help identify ranges.
An important item to remember is that there is crossover from one range to another. For instance, in some singers a male Baritone may cross into the tenor range. This occurs because the overall width of a singers vocal range will vary from one person to the next.

Would love any comments or observations.