This is my absolute favourite time of year, especially here in Nova Scotia. As we embark on the 2nd fall season of the You Gotta Sing! Chorus, I am in a constant state of gratitude for all the incredible people that have helped me on the path to becoming a community song leader.
I was blessed with hearing my mother’s voice as she read to me. I remember absorbing the vibrations through her chest into my little self and soaking up all her loving words.
My maternal grandmother would sing “diddle-dee” songs and bounce me on her knee, telling me silly, made-up stories while she stroked my hair. I learned about improvisation and playfulness from her.
My paternal grandmother had a fiery passion for music, especially organ music, and encouraged me as a young pianist and singer. She loved to hear me play the harp and sing in her later years. She taught me to appreciate the power and beauty of music and its capacity to lift away cares and troubles.
My aunt was my first beloved music teacher. As a toddler I would sit beside her at the piano and fell in love with the way her hands moved over the keys and the delicious sounds that filled my ears. This started a love affair with my first instrument, the piano. I could express feelings and thoughts without any words at all. My first taste of musical freedom.
I found another “home” in school choirs and theatre productions. Nothing beat the feeling of creating something with others, bonding in friendship and mutual admiration, and then sharing our creation with an appreciative audience.
I have been so very blessed along the way with excellent piano and singing teachers. Every single one of them taught with heart and wisdom and gave me exactly what I needed at the time in my life when I needed it most. Whenever I desire their guidance and expertise, I can bring up the sensations and memories of our lessons together ~ what a gift and joy in my life! I would often leave these sessions with great energy and enthusiasm and write copious notes, fired up to teach others what I had just learned! Thank you Catherine Holbrook, Arelene Wright, Theresa Thibodeau, Catherine Robbin, Deborah Joy, Ali Garrison, and Tannis Sprott!