In a month or so I am launching a mentoring program for Teachers of Singing and Recovering Academics.
It’s called “The Alchemy of Teaching Singing.”
I put this together because there is a crying need for those who work with singers to understand that the best teaching and coaching comes from those who come from an Undivided Self.
They are teaching WHO they are far more than WHAT they know.
Learning to do this requires a sort of alchemical process to find personal and pedagogical truths amidst the deafening noise of information, data, and a cult of personality. These things don’t work well with singing. Because singing is about the silence of stillness, becoming a channel for bio-electric energy, all human expression and divine connection.
I think many teachers know this–but they don’t FEEL it. They know in their heads how it is supposed to be, but have not been able to embody it yet, even as they help their students considerably. They have degrees and workshop certifications coming out every available body hole but still are wondering where their magic is.
We have more educated voice teachers now than at any time in the history of academia and dare I say it? Very little teaching from an Undivided Self, which means very little true wisdom.
It is about staying centered in spite of (insert performance issue, equipment malfunction, audience reaction, your self-agonizing “oh I didn’t sing that passage well.”) The later is slap-in-the-face to the privilege of singing and having an education. All functional pedagogy must lead to these things, or it is simply mental masturbation
Your “undivided Self” is created, not only in health and wellness, but by exploring your own inner life and creativity. “The Alchemy of Teaching Singing” will introduce practical and useful steps towards integrating your Undivided Self as a teacher and a singer.
Every major thread of one’s life experience must be honored, which creates a state of being of such coherence and strength that it can hold students and subject as well as the Self.
Singing is the “Great Thing” that should exist at the center of our teaching. The ‘center of knowing’ is often placed with the teacher, and ignores the special place where the magic happens: in the space between singer and singing teacher.
Special thanks to Palmer Parker and his brilliant book “The Courage to Teach.”