Global Harmonies Singing Philosophy
The Voice is the deepest expression of your soul
Discover it, Explore it, Support it
Sing from the soul
Harmonise with others
Let go and have fun
Refresh, Inspire, Uplift
Voicework is the exploration of the voice, our unique instrument which produces vibration/sound and word. It is the lynchpin between our minds which formulate linguistic expression, our emotions which colour our vocal sound and tone, and spirit which is present in and contactable through sound.
In practice, voicework consists of:
- deep breathing and body work
- natural sounds e.g. laughing, sighing, weeping, groaning
- toning or the elongation of a note or tone, using breath and voice
- chanting or the rhythmic speaking or singing of words or sounds, either on one or two pitches or using a melody
Singing is often associated with both entertainment and talent. Those who are ‘good’ singers are paid to or asked to sing and others who ‘can’t’ sing, listen or consume singing recordings or occasions as a product. In some cultures, however, learning to sing and singing collectively is as important and fundamental to growth and socialisation as learning to read and write is in our culture.
I believe that most people unconsciously or consciously yearn to sing. Singing is good for us, physically, emotionally and spiritually. This is why singing is a birth right and everyone, regardless of talent and experience, should have the opportunity to sing for themselves and with others.
Learning to sing is a misnomer. We unlearn how not to sing. We find out how to support and nurture our voices, how not to force, not to judge, not to constrain or copy. We have fun, we dramatise, dance with and delve into our voices. Then, we find we have our own unique voice which we can enjoy freely in the way we want to.
On group harmony singing
I firmly believe that group harmony singing promotes both wholeness in the individual and harmony in a group. It allows individuals to find their own voice and to experience that collectively. It is uplifting, inspiring, relaxing and fun. Singing transcends barriers between people and can create a longed-for feeling of oneness, even with strangers.
When we sing as a group we intensify the experience of the toning qualities of vibration, that is, our cells, internal organs and etheric bodies are being massaged and harmonised by sound.
On intercultural singing
Intercultural singing involves singing songs from cultures other than our own, mixing songs from different places and reinventing traditions. This reflects the society we live in today, which is not monocultural and where development is dependent on harnessing and repsecting all people’s talents, contributions and needs.
Singing songs from other cultures and in different languages allows people to explore unusual sounds and therefore parts of their psyches and personalities. This style of singing frees us from inhibitions and allows us to express ourselves in a unique way. Most of us have a vocal comfort zone, and stick to a repertoire in which we feel comfortable. Learning to sing African, Georgian, native American, Indian, blues or what ever other genre or style allows us to expand our voices, developing us as singers as as people.
In singing the songs of ‘the other’, or of different cultures, we do not aim to become like them but we can take a step closer to imaginging what it is like to be in the world in a different way. It is a process of sharing, on a very embodied, non-intellectual level, which can give rise to more empathy and mutual understanding amongst cultures.