...from the musical mind of jordan maicoo

What's a Castrato?

Article 13.01.2012 13:02

As you may have guessed by just looking at the word 'castrato' that it has something to do with castration! Click my article to read the full details.

A Castrato is a man who has a singing voice of a soprano, mezzo - soprano or contralto. This happens when the singer is castrated before reaching puberty, thus the larynx of the boy is not allowed to be developed properly. This may also happen naturally (although it is very uncommon). Therefore, the vocal range of the singer remains unaffected and he can sing very high!

However, there was a downside to this. Because of the lack of testosterone in the castrato's body, his bone joints would not harden properly and his limbs would grow unusually long. Combine this with intensive training, and you had a singer with unrivalled lung-power, breath control and range.

Castration for this purpose was made illegal in Italy in 1870.

Hope you learnt something!


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