Updated: Mar 19, 2021
I am a singer, trained operatically, a dramatic soprano.
For years and years I honed my technique and trained my voice to make beautiful music, to make sound that would resonate in very large halls, without amplification. I wanted to be part of the great, transformative story-telling traditions that are Opera and Art Song.
I succeeded. I made beautiful sound... and my body could not sustain the work.
Those in the know told me how wonderful the sound was when I forced my body to sing in the accepted way. Yet, every time I produced sound the way they wanted me to, I ended up with week long vocal compromise.
I felt shame and anger when well meaning, self-help inclined singer colleagues told me I could have an amazing career if I could just "get rid of my resistance." They had seen me "struggling with my ego" as world class professionals generously gave me fantastic input on how I should make sound.
This "good girl" tried harder to cooperate.
I continued to force the tiniest of tissues in my body and their support structures to make sound in a way they can only do with disastrous results while repeatedly addressing the "issue" of my ego that was purportedly getting in the way.
I had to quit singing (again) and went on another journey of self discovery, this time to honor the truth of how my body, mind, emotions and spirit interact. I discovered there truly was resistance and it wasn't my "ego". The vocal compromise was the result of something other than a bad attitude. That the resistance was legitimately anatomically based. It became clear that forcing a technique down my larynx (no matter how well it works for someone whom I highly respect) had yielded unhealthy results for my body and my spirit.
It took a lot of courage to fly in the face of accepted, academic authority. It took frustration, despair and a stubborn streak, the one that rejects an arbitrary "No" and asks, "Why not"? and "How"? to explore other modalities, to find out how this body works. As a result I discovered ways of talking about and supporting sound that are very direct and efficient and I've found that they work spectacularly well for others too, especially for those who are physically designed like I am.
My journey as a singer, teacher and human being has also taught me that the fundamental physical support work is just a starting point for identifying and nurturing each person's unique resonance.
I am deeply grateful to those who love me and have given so freely of themselves to help me in this quest, including those who did not understand my body/mind/emotions/spirit. They opened the way for me to search out my path for myself. I owned my shame and my anger - beautiful tools pointing the way, and perhaps away from the way I had been going.
I continue to uncover my truth, while changing my relationship with my story. I spend my resources, my time and my money, my sweat and my concentration on sustaining and balancing my body for optimal release of sound and I expect to apply myself to the growth of my spirit and the development of emotional intelligence for the rest of my life.
I have discovered:
When I resonate, true to the way my body and spirit resonate, I get heart stirring feedback.
There are those who want or need to hear my truth, shared in the way my body produces sound. I believe the same is true for you.
I am dedicated to helping people release their truth by helping them access and integrate their resonance.
Perhaps your experience of being judged vocally mirrors mine . . .
With great respect for your resonant path,
© Monica Schober, VoiceUnbound℠ 2017. A link back to this blog post and credit to VoiceUnbound.com is required in order to share it on your personal blog or website. Thank you.