Ever since I was 10 I have started singing higher and higher notes. Also at this time I could sing all the way down to the contra octave and still sing some 2nd octave notes. Now I can sing up to F# in the 3rd octave but only down to E in the small octave.

I first extended to 2nd octave notes, then soprano C and higher.

As I have practiced soprano for 4-5 years I should be very good at it. However it sounds very squeaky, sort of like someone playing the flute for the first time and has ever since I started extending my high note range. In fact it sounds more squeaky than it did when I started singing soprano C and above.

Why is my soprano getting squeakier with more practice and why did my bass range abruptly go from down to contra octave to only E in the small octave?

  • I am not a doctor but I would not underestimate a possible pathology. Changes in your voice can be a relevant and often ignored sign of an ongoing pathology (not a fancy singer pathology, I mean of the life-threatening if untreated kind). Consider seeing a doctor just to make sure everything is in order. Jun 12, 2015 at 17:22
  • But my Momma says that I am a hypochondriac and that I don't need to go to the doctor if I have something minor(like cracking in my lungs) or strong but normal(like menstrual cycle cramps).
    – Caters
    Jun 13, 2015 at 3:57
  • Or you know, just have it checked out and then move on if it's nothing? "My voice has changed and I'm very well past puberty" is an entirely legit reason to see a doctor. If nobody would go see a doctor until he has two weeks to live there would be much more coroners than general practitioners. Of course, if there is a relatively sudden change, if you can no longer hit the notes you hit when you were 12 that's called getting old. Jun 13, 2015 at 6:23

2 Answers 2


Uh, all the way down to the contra octave? It's only very deep basses who can dip into the contra octave convincingly (contra-B, its highest note, is already really, really low, requiring 2 auxiliary ledger lines below the bass clef system to write down).

E in the small octave is still pretty low for a soprano. It's about a fourth below what you would expect an alto to sing.

The squeakiness is likely a combination of control, closure and breath. The high pitches actually require very, very little air, so the trick is to sing very, very lightly. Being able to do that requires good breath control, singing from deep in the stomach and keeping the chest elastical. The feeling is to be singing with a connection between diaphragm and mask without involving the throat. Of course, this is nonsense anatomically but it tends to correspond with where one feels vibrations and/or tightness.

"As I have practiced soprano for 4-5 years" does not really specify whether you actually had lessons. That might be worth a try as well. Finding a well-matching teacher does not necessarily work the first time around, though. And you can't expect wonders in a short time.

  • I really could sing down to the contra and up to the 2nd octave when I was 10 because I could sing a lot of the notes in Blumenlied by Gustav Lange when I listened to it, including bass clef notes. And I really can still sing as low as E in the small octave but my great octave and contra octave has been completely lost(I think this is simply from high female hormones). In exchange for that I gained some more 2nd octave notes and notes from soprano C to F# in the 3rd octave
    – Caters
    Jan 5, 2015 at 4:05

Take lessons from a qualified voice teacher who can give you feedback about specific ways to improve your technique and tone. You already know that you are not happy with the way you sound and do not know how to improve it on your own. It is probably time to pay a teacher to show you how to unlearn your bad habits and re-learn some good ones. Good luck, and keep working at it.

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