Opera vs. Screaming: The Misconception of Classical Vocal Artistry

Opera vs. Screaming: The Misconception of Classical Vocal Artistry

Many social media users describe singing “opera” as “screaming,” knowing that the former refers to a part of classical Western music and the latter means emitting continuous, intense screams.

Despite the big difference between the two words, “screaming” has become a ready-made description among many users of social media platforms for what opera stars offer, which is what the first Saudi opera singer, Sawsan Al-Bahiti, recently responded to in an interview broadcast by the Saudi Cultural Channel.

Al-Bahiti, who considered her singing at the “International Opera Festival in Riyadh” last year to be “a dream come true,” confirmed that the percentage of opera singers relying on their voices does not exceed one percent, while their total reliance is on themselves and “it is not the voice as is commonly believed.”

She said: “Whoever hears opera singing and says, ‘This is shouting,’ without realizing that whoever sings opera does not use or stress his voice, not even one percent… relying entirely on himself.”

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