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Scholarly Abstraction: Diction Texts
Date: April 16, 2014
Madeleine Marshall Simon (1899-1993), a pianist turned vocal coach, enjoyed wide acclaim as an expert in English diction through her teaching career at The Juilliard School (1935-1986) and particularly after publication of her book, The Singer's Manual of English Diction (first published in 1953). By means of primary source materials, including an early version of her textbook containing her handwritten notes, personal correspondence from her time at Juilliard, and a handwritten phonetic transcription for Lily Pons, this historical investigation explores Marshall's life and career with specific attention to the cultural and professional contexts that informed her work. The argument advanced is that The Singer’s Manual of English Diction endured due to Marshall’s social and professional connections coupled with her comprehensive knowledge of the subject of diction.
(“Scholarly Abstractions” is a feature highlighting brief abstracts from recent graduate projects in choral music and research published in the IJRCS
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