Hello everyone! I know for a lot of kids the end of August means the start of school.
Well, for singers this is a significant time, too. The Fall signifies the start of audition season. I, personally, can see the difference in my inbox at the start of August as companies start posting audition deadlines all at once. While auditions are super intimidating, I would like to share something that changed the way I think about my approach to not just auditioning, but performing in general.
For those of you who don’t know, I love anatomy. For me, a knowledge of anatomical structures is helpful as a singer and as a teacher. Plus, I think the inner workings of the human body are just super cool. For those of you who do not share my love of anatomy, this will just be a picture of your guts. Sorry.
I recently came across this diagram in a book I’m studying and I just had to share. The things I want to point out are the position of the heart and diaphragm. The top of the diaphragm is actually composed of tendinous tissue and is connected to the pericardium, which is the tissue that surrounds the heart. Let me translate that in the way my emotional singer self saw it: The muscle referenced the most as being vital to singing is literally connected to the organ most often referenced as being connected with emotion. Your diaphragm literally touches your heart. Not just touches, surrounds it and pulls on it. How perfect that these two structures are connected. Singing is something so emotional, so deeply personal, and sometimes, so heartbreaking. Isn’t is great?!
So, what does this have to do with auditioning and school starting and performing? Well, since singing is so closely tied to your heart, it is my opinion that repertoire needs to have meaning. The songs chosen for auditions (or for singing anytime, really) should be songs that really touch your heart (pun absolutely intended). If the songs we choose to share with others don’t mean anything to us, it won’t mean much to the audience either. And it is our job as performers to touch the hearts of our listeners, too.
I hope you enjoy this diagram as much as I do. I feel like, now more than ever, singing is so important. With COVID on the rise again and so much continued uncertainty, it’s hard to stay focused. But I can tell you this: singing is important. So go out there and sing your hearts out!
“You have to take a deep breath. and allow the music to flow through you. Revel in it, allow yourself to awe. When you play, allow the music to break your heart with its beauty.” ― Kelly White