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Vocal Music (Solo): Research



Browse Professional Journals

Professional journals are a great place to learn from experts about the most recent developments in your field.
Search articles online or browse the Allen Library current periodicals (near the Allen entrance). See especially:

Journal Article Databases

thinkerLibrary databases provide citations for articles, book chapters, and more. Most articles/chapters focus on a narrow and specific topic, so they are great for deeper research. To get started:

  1. Choose a database.
  2. Search for keywords such as genres, topics, names of people, etc.
  3. Limit your results by date, language, and more with the the left-hand menu on the results page.

Need more help?

See our Article help page for step-by-step instructions and videos to help you search databases and find full-text articles. And you can always ask a librarian for individual help.

Music Article Databases


Books in the Allen Library (selections)

Find more books on the history of vocal music

Search subjects in the catalog:

Opera > History and criticism
Singing > History and criticism 
Vocal music > History and criticism

Browse the shelves:
Call number Subject
ML 1460 History of vocal technique
ML1600 – 2881 History of secular vocal music
(opera, musicals, songs, etc.)
ML 2900 – 3275 History of sacred vocal music
(Masses, oratorios, etc.)


Online Resources

Books in the Allen Library and online (selections)

Find more books on opera

Search a title or composer in the catalog, for example:

Margaret Garner by Richard Danielpour
Puccini, Giacomo

Search subjects in the catalog:

Opera > Dramaturgy
Opera > History and criticism

Browse the shelves:
Call number Subject
ML 410 Composer biographies
ML 1699 – 2110 History of dramatic secular vocal music
(including opera)


Reference resources include dictionaries, encyclopedias, and more.
They often provide a short overview of a topic, then point to more resources you can use for further research.

Music Reference Databases

Books in the Allen Library (selections)

Find more reference books

See all voice reference books in the catalog:
Song reference
Vocal music reference

Browse the Reference shelves by call number:

Call Number Topic
ML48 - ML49 Opera libretti, translations, &
IPA transcriptions
ML54.6 Song texts and translations
ML102 S6 Song dictionaries & encyclopedias
ML102 V6 Voice dictionaries & encyclopedias
ML128 S6 Song bibliographies
ML128 O61 Opera bibliographies

Looking for songs/aria texts, translations, or IPA transcriptions? See our guide to Vocal Music Translations.


Books in the Allen Library (selections)

Find more books about singers

Search a particular singer, for example:

Anderson, Marian
Hayes, Roland

Search subjects:

African American singers
Male singers
Singers > Biography
Women singers

Browse the shelves:
Call Number Subject
ML 400 Biographies of multiple singers
ML 420 Individual singer biographies
ML421 Performing groups

Suggest a Resource

Know of a resource you think should be added to this guide? Let us know!

Want to suggest we purchase something new? Contact Tracey Rudnick (

Find Full Text Articles

Search eJournal Locator for the journal title:

 Journal Title:

Need help? See our article help page or ask a librarian.

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