Swiss yodellers choke on 'playback' tapes

7th May 2010, Comments 0 comments

Swiss yodellers are up in arms over the planned use of 'playback' recordings to back their voices at the 100th anniversary of Switzerland's national yodelling association on Saturday.

"This is taking the mickey out of the public, unfortunately you can't put it any other way," Hannes Fuhrer, composer and singer of the traditional high pitched Swiss Alpine chants told the daily Berner Zeitung.

The organisers argued that the extra recorded voices were necessary to back up the 600 yodellers and Alphorn players on stage in a one-off gala performance in the cavernous main ice hockey stadium in Bern.

Yodelling, a type of folk singing with a high pitched oscillating chants, is traditionally sung outdoors. It was originally a form of communication between isolated Alpine valleys.

"We'll never sing over pre-recorded tapes. In singing we express our feelings," Philippe Rosat, former head of the yodellers club in Pays-d-Enhaut, a rural area of western Switzerland, said in the newspaper 20 minutes.

© 2010 AFP

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