Academic journal article Journal of Singing

IPA Made Easy: A Guidebook for the International Phonetic Alphabet

Academic journal article Journal of Singing

IPA Made Easy: A Guidebook for the International Phonetic Alphabet

Article excerpt

Wentlent, Anna. IPA Made Easy: A Guidebook for the International Phonetic Alphabet. Van Nuys, CA: Alfred Music, 2014. Paper, 64 pp., $9.99. ISBN 978-1-4706-1561-1 www.alfred.com

The IPA is a boon to singers because it facilitates accurate pronunciation even for performers not fluent in the languages. A new reference to IPA is a pocket-sized guidebook by Anna Wentlent, managing editor of school choral publications for Alfred Music, who has encapsulated an abundance of information into a compact volume.

One page is devoted to each IPA symbol; vowels are presented first, and then consonants. For each vowel, the sound is described according to the tongue position, with the descriptors forward, back, mixed, or central. For each consonant, the point and manner of articulation is identified, as well as whether it is voiced or unvoiced. Words that contain the sound in English, Italian, French, Latin, German, and Spanish are presented. (If the sound is not used in a specific language, the space is left blank. …

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