With 1 Voice
Climbing, climbing, climbing to reach my goals can be lonely and daunting. My voice gets tight and quivery when fatigue hits. Recently I took time out to sing with a friend in a Gospel singing workshop. Joy! one voice combined with many to bring back harmony on so many levels.
Happy Harmony Day
Today is World Harmony Day celebrating the diversity and beauty of our cultures living in harmony. Singing is how all cultures communicate and unify. While traveling down a river in Croatia with friends we sung in banter Australian songs while the locals opposite us sang Croatian songs. Singing in groups breaks down barriers encouraging people to embrace diversity as they sing in new languages. Singing another nations anthem in a choir has shown respect for another culture. In a combined choir for the FINA World Swimming Championships we welcomed swimmers with their anthem to be greeted by tears and cheers.
At the singing workshop I watched as we all started with trepidation and insecurity. Our teacher cajoling us with a physical, vocal and brain warm up that had us laugh, relax and breath. Singing shifted us to another world far from our daily grind. Our egos were bypassed to acknowledge our souls need to sing to our God.
Baggage be gone
The neuroscience of singing has proven it make us happier, healthier, smarter and more creative. Singing has been likened to meditation as there is a calming effect and beta endorphins are released. When you surrender to the voice within you the physical self is transcended. This is witnessed in the Variety Children’s Choir and the One Voice community choir which have disenfranchised members bringing magic to our ears. See: www.creativityaustralia.org.au/join/join-achoir/
Singing has been shown to help rewire the brain. Research with stroke survivors that were unable to speak with singing could access another part of their brain to be able to communicate. Singing for those with Dementia exercises the brain – with tunes come memories. Refer to: http://www.creativityaustralia.org.au/research/choir-research/ for research on singing and wellness.
Singing has the benefit of being a physical workout. Muscle tone improves in the larynx, reducing snoring and improving sleep – now that’s worth a Hallelujah! In order to sing we adopt the correct breathing posture. Singing has been found to support the immune system by decreasing cortisol and increasing IgA autoimmune antibodies. A molecular massage is how singing works on the thyroid stimulating this gland at the base of the neck that regulates metabolism. Research discovered that singing in a choir helps regulate participants heart rate as they literally came in sync.
Social isolation evaporates when people work as a team to create a melodic sound. Interpersonal skills are gained as learning together in a group you extend from a single being to a common humanity working together for music. Comfort zones are vacated as choirs learn together and growing self confidence as a song is grasped.
Singing for Good
Singing is not a selfish past time as it brings people together for a purpose. This is illustrated in this youtube of the sing for good fund raiser.
I have memories as a midwife of Mothers singing during their labor to soothe their pain. There is a correlation with the throat and cervix – the tighter the mothers cervix the higher pitch her voice. At one birth we ” Ommmed” for 6 hours getting lower and deeper tones until a beautiful baby girl finally came. The next day I had no voice and wondered if the neighbours thought a new religious sect had moved in.
So sing loud in the car, shower and together in choir, work or church. In the words of a little pig https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtA-FpTZOQw
Thankyou Sara Russell for singing with me in the Gospel Workshop
Thankyou to Mum and Dad for filling our house with music
Thankyou Ben Hur, Darren Wicks and all Choir Masters