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The unmistakable combination; sweaty palms, a racing heart and butterflies fluttering throughout every part of your insides. What is it about that adrenaline rush, why does doing something scary make us feel so alive?

Comfort zones are overrated.

Have you ever heard of Voice Yoga?

I hadn’t either, until I met an artist who invited me to a session during a poetry workshop. We had briefly discussed how I enjoyed hearing someone read my poetry more than doing it myself. She kind of found this to be unacceptable. It was my work, my thoughts and feelings. I was sharing a part of me. The words should be heard in the writer’s voice…

How do you feel about reading your writing to an audience?

Our body is a tool, a complex instrument. It needs to warm up before any kind of physical or vocal performance. Anyone who works out on a regular basis, or is an athlete knows this.

You don’t just jump right in. The body needs time to prepare to be able to deliver at it’s best. Dancers and actors (if they are good) know this. An artist who fails to ready themselves before getting on stage, is not someone I am interested in working with. It displays a lack of connection to their own body and misuse of their tool.

Theatre school prepared me for Voice Yoga. Graduation would have never happened if I wasn’t able to make sounds in public. I have embodied a variety of domestic and forest dwelling animals. If you ever need someone who can impersonate a bear waking up from hibernation, look no further!

I do my version of a cat regularly to get giggles out of my niece. The four seasons, how different a normal cloud is from a storm cloud… All of this I can demonstrate, just for you.

Breaking patterns, moving and using our voice outside of the conventional physical and tonal ranges keeps everything moving like a well-oiled machine. Singing, creating a rhythm with your voice and chanting can be very healing. I remember reading somewhere about a group of monks who stopped chanting daily and their health quickly began to decline. 

Without the use of musical instruments sitting in a group and improvising with sound is powerful and uplifting. Listening and being truly present, finding the balance of your own voice within all the others.

Blood pressure rising, I continue to read my poetry in Voice Yoga class. Trying to be courageous, with each poem I read it gets a tiny bit easier.

Have you stepped outside of your comfort zone lately?

 

F.

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