What is the exact difference between a mezzo soprano and a soprano? Have heard that both have almost the same range but what is the exact difference? If mezzo is slightly weak in singing in head voice, then what can she do to improve the same ?

1 Answer 1


Technically speaking, a mezzo soprano tends to favor the lower and/or be overall better suited towards the lower soprano range (though not an alto) while still having a soprano timbre overall, though usually a bit darker as a result.

Ideally, a mezzo soprano is a mezzo soprano and it thus not 'slightly weak' (as you put it) compared to a regular soprano -- ie, this is their natural voice which just happens to be lower than the average soprano, and their is nothing wrong with this. Their voice should be further trained in it's natural tendencies for best results, not pushed towards something it is not.

This is of course assuming that they are receiving proper instruction and practicing with good technique to be considered a mezzo soprano.

  • I would also add that the quality of sound distinguishes a mezzo as much as range. Many mezzo sopranos can actually sing up to high C and beyond comfortably, but their timbre and training as a mezzo favors the lower ranges. You're absolutely right that one is not lesser or weaker than the other, just different. Like the difference between violin and viola.
    – Max Finis
    May 27, 2016 at 14:25
  • I tried to address this by saying that the lower range is a bit darker than a standard soprano, which is what I think you're referencing with timbre. I'd like to understand you further - could you elaborate on this part of your response? May 27, 2016 at 19:14
  • 1
    My point was just to elaborate on what you already said – that the timbre is, indeed, "a bit darker" and perhaps fuller-bodied – but also to add that it is that difference in quality that makes one a mezzo as much as range. Both the sound and range are defining elements of their equipment, and one can't choose their instrument; it is what it is. Furthermore, their training as mezzo focuses on the literature and sound qualities that favor and amplify their darker, fuller sound.
    – Max Finis
    May 27, 2016 at 21:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.