02 Apr Watch Disney Frozen “Let it Go.” One song, 25 different languages!
When Frozen was dubbed into 41 languages, it meant that 41 singers had to be selected for the popular favorite “Let it Go.” Hear 25 of the vocalists in 25 different languages. It is really amazing to listen to one take of the song, with 25 different voices & languages all patched together. Even though these are 25 vocalists, their voices meld into one.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, “Let it Go” composer Robert Lopez is grateful that the animated hit’s 41 foreign-language versions are not his problem, but that of Disney Character Voices International senior vp creative Rick Dempsey, responsible for translating Disney’s films. “We were floored when we heard the compilation of ‘Let It Go’ in all those different languages,” says Lopez. “It sounded practically like Idina Menzel singing the whole thing,” says wife and co-composer, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, who notes that it’s actually dozens of foreign voices dubbed for each language. “That’s why you want to work with Disney, because no one else has that touch all over the world.”
Idina Menzel does have a spectacular voice, and finding 41 international singers who could equal her sound is impressive. One amazing quality of Idina Menzel’s voice is her ability to sing higher range notes in an uber-focused sound placement. Her high notes sound compressed to a sharp clarity that build effortlessly into the climatic moments of “Let it Go”.
One great way to get that clarity of sound is through “vocal fry” exercises. Vocal fry is the sound that is made by the vocal folds vibrating slow enough that instead of creating sound we just hear a “buzzing” noise. It’s the sound you make when you’re tired and just waking up in the morning, or at the end of a long sigh or yawn – most of us know it as a “sleepy” sound. But vocal fry is much more than that, it exercises and strengthens the vocal folds to create a focused, clear sound. Vocal fry also aids in creating a “mix” sound on high notes, so that a singer can sing high with a sound quality that is more similar to their lower notes than, say, an opera singer’s high note sound quality.
If you want to try to sharpen your sound, combat breathiness, and build killer high notes, try doing a little vocal fry every day. The standard exercise is to move up and down a 5-note scale, increasing by a half-step after every repetition. You should be able to hear a tiny bit of sound that is following the note changes, but mostly a full vibrating “fry” sound dominates. After doing this for 5 minutes, try singing and enjoy how much easier it feels. For a more advanced exercise, try starting on a vocal fry sound, and then transitioning into a gentle pure sound in the same breath. The sound should come out very focused sounding, with a little buzz on it, almost the way a mosquito sounds in your ear. With commitment and time, you could start hearing those Idina Menzel high notes in your own voice!