The Daily Iowan

Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

Holly+Patch+speaks+at+the+Trans+Vocality%3A+singing%2C+Gender%2Cand+Joyful+Politics+event+at+the+Jefferson+Building+on+Wednesday%2C+March+7%2C+2018.+The+event+explored+western+musical+in+terms+of+trans+and+gender+non-conforming+representation.+%28Yue+Zhang%2FDaily+Iowan%29
Back to Article
Back to Article

Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

Holly Patch speaks at the Trans Vocality: singing, Gender,and Joyful Politics event at the Jefferson Building on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The event explored western musical in terms of trans and gender non-conforming representation. (Yue Zhang/Daily Iowan)

Holly Patch speaks at the Trans Vocality: singing, Gender,and Joyful Politics event at the Jefferson Building on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The event explored western musical in terms of trans and gender non-conforming representation. (Yue Zhang/Daily Iowan)

The Daily Iowan; Photos by Yue Z

Holly Patch speaks at the Trans Vocality: singing, Gender,and Joyful Politics event at the Jefferson Building on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The event explored western musical in terms of trans and gender non-conforming representation. (Yue Zhang/Daily Iowan)

The Daily Iowan; Photos by Yue Z

The Daily Iowan; Photos by Yue Z

Holly Patch speaks at the Trans Vocality: singing, Gender,and Joyful Politics event at the Jefferson Building on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The event explored western musical in terms of trans and gender non-conforming representation. (Yue Zhang/Daily Iowan)

Annie Fitzpatrick, [email protected]

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






An event Wednesday night discussed issues of gender and vocality at “Trans Vocality: Singing, Gender, and Joyful Politics,” hosted by University of Iowa graduate Holly Patch.

Patch graduated from the UI with degrees in gender, women, sexuality studies, and music in 2011. Her time and education led to a great deal of interest and the discussion of vocality in the transgender community.

The event centered on the special relationship between vocality and gender. Patch focused on the distinction between vocality and voice. Vocality allows for an intersubjective acoustic space that avoids dichotomous generalizations, Patch said.

“I hope that [participants] are going to think more about how they hear things … also how they’re hearing gender in general … I want to get them thinking more than anything,” Patch said.

She also discussed the power of the human vocality in its internal embodiment, covering the uniqueness of each individual’s vocality and how that ties to identity. The discussion was then directed specifically to the lives of transgender individuals.

RELATED: UI faculty and rape-prevention advocates host forum discussing #MeToo movement

Allison Holmes-Bendixen, a musical-theater teacher and participant in the study, noted the prominence of vocality.

“I learned so much … I was thinking about the way she was talking about experiencing vocality and finding authentic voice,” Holmes-Bendixen said. “And that spoke to me a lot as an instructor of voice.”

The event then focused on the art of opera in terms of vocality.

The distinctions among soprano, mezzo, tenor, and bass roles represent a long history of the gendering of voice, Patch said, noting the pioneers of transgender singing and how they challenge the binary roles of vocality.

Patch then discussed the transgender representation in choirs across the United States and how they tie to her study of trans vocality. Patch referenced the importance of these communities for the growth and acceptance surrounding transgender individuals.

Mary Ann Rasmussen, a senior lecturer in the UI English Department working in gender, women, and sexualality studies, listened to the presentation of her former student. She described Patch’s time at the university and the transformation that into a research study.

RELATED: What’s wrong with today’s masculinity?

“I encourage students to bring together things that they’ve been learning … and for Holly, it was music and gender, women, and sexuality studies,” Rasmussen said. “So she brought them together in this really brilliant way that involved performance and research on the gendering of opera.”

Patch concluded the discussion by addressing each individual’s experience with the individual’s vocality. By addressing the uniqueness of people’s identification and voice, there is room for growth and education of the transgender experience, Patch said.

The event touched on the importance of not making assumptions regarding one’s gender based on vocal cues.

“Knowing that I can understand the manuals of what the voice is doing physiologically, but that experience of what voice feels like and authenticity … is unique to the individual,” Holmes-Bendixen said.

The UI provided the groundwork for Patch’s study of the subject, and Patch referenced the importance and meaning that had.

Comments

comments

Navigate Left
  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    New Living Learning Community to provide support for first-generation students

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    UI research leads to possible treatment for diabetes, fibrosis

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    To ‘Bah-humbug,’ or not to ‘bah humbug’

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    UI students and staff discuss preparation for winter

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    Veterans for Peace advocates for change with weekly Pentacrest protest

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    UI study dives into new biotech that could replace needle-administered drugs

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    U.S.-Mexico border forefront of Obermann Conversation

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    UI senior attends rocket launch in Florida

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    UI Hospitals & Clinics

    Research papers show aspirin to negatively affect older populations

  • Iowa alumna Patch hosts discussion on gendered vocality

    Campus

    UISG to pair with Yellow Cab to provide airport shuttle service

Navigate Right