Magic Choral Trick #96 Balancing the Half Diminished Chord – the Controversy
High on the list of any musician’s priorities would have to be finding the correct resonant balance for the half diminished chord. Well – perhaps the choral director subset of musicians. And amongst those are the truly fanatical about such things – the Barbershop directors.
So here’s the scoop about the controversy.
I had originally heard that in a half diminished chord all parts should be balanced equally – and this does work well. Well, certainly better than just taking a stab at it and hoping for the best.
But I still felt that I wanted more from this type of chord, so I asked Ig Jakovac, a singing judge with the Barbershop Harmony Society – and here’s what he said:
“Half-diminished chords should be balanced with the perfect interval (fourth, fifth) predominant. Some find a more consonant sound is achieved when the lowest minor third, if it exists, is emphasized.”
A half diminished chord, if it’s sung in tune, with good quality is always going to sound exciting. But Wow! When that third, the second note from the bottom is emphasized a bit more, something in the feeling of depth in the chord gets much richer.
Thought you’d all like to know.
Posted on February 24, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged Balancing the Half Diminished Chord – the Controversy. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.