Singing style is an important attribute of singing performance with strong effects on the subjective perception and reception of music. Recently, musicologists have started to study singing style in popular music, where at the same time digital singing style effects have become so popular that today the majority of popular music productions will make use of one of the few effect plugins that are available on the market today. In this context the ARS project aims to establish a mutually beneficial interdisciplinary collaboration between musicologists studying singing performance (humanities), engineers working on singing voice transformation (digital sciences), and developers specialized in software for professional audio.
ARS has two central objectives: The first one is to establish new means to study singing style in real music performances. The second one aims to develop algorithms for high quality expressive singing style modification. From the long list of style related singing characteristics, the ARS project will concentrate on features related to personal style that is stylistic effects a singer might choose in a performance to create an interpretative effect. This includes the modification of intonation-, and intensity contours, as well as the voice characteristics including but not limited to: rough, growl, breathy, belting, and the vocal tract configuration implying a singer’s formant.
To achieve these objectives ARS gathers a multi-disciplinary consortium of:
1. musicologists (PASSAGE XX-XXI): responsible for the description of singing style in performances and the specification and creation of style models;
2. specialists in voice analysis and transformation (IRCAM, Analysis/synthesis team): responsible for singing voice analysis and the implementation of style effects;
3. specialists in singing voice interfaces and control (D'Alembert, LAM): responsible for developing new approaches for performative analysis and control interfaces;
4. developers (Flux): that will implement prototype plugins, for evaluation by professional users.