why does the crowd just sing?

If you don't dare to sing at concerts, don't worry, you won't hear it!

At large gatherings, whether for a concert or to sing a national anthem in unison, a singing crowd always sounds right. How is it that a thousand average singers can transform themselves into one singer with perfect pitch?

Mimicry effect

We can also observe this phenomenon when, at the end of a play for example, the audience matches the applause in such a way that each individual claps at the same tempo. Each person will follow the rhythm of the person next to them, thus creating a chain of mimicry. We can then talk about rhythmic mimicry. In our case, this phenomenon applies to the accuracy of the melody. The "bad singers" will be influenced by the "good singers" next to them and thus self-correct. 

Averaging effect

This is a simple mathematical phenomenon: the average effect. If we take into account all the individuals in a crowd, we will find singers who are too high pitched and those who are too low pitched. The sounds mix towards the right one by the means of acoustic property. Moreover, according to the model of Lucas Lacasa (2016), our ear tends to attenuate the false notes through the hubbub and to interpret the whole of the acoustic signals emitted by a crowd towards a single and same right note. This is an interpretation that our brain makes of all the information it receives, which does not exactly correspond to physical reality.   


Apolline offers singing lessons in Lausanne as well as guitar lessons, drum lessons and piano lessons to help you perfect your musical skills. 

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