Announcement: Chicago Circle Singing at Davin Youngs Voice
I’d love to share with you a brief story that will lead to an announcement about a new offering at Davin Youngs Voice.
In 2014, I began a singing and teaching journey. It was an unexpected journey of discovery, that got kicked off by the incomparable Jeanie LoVetri. For the last couple of years, I’ve been working with Jeanie and Somatic Voicework™ The LoVetri Method to uncover my authentic voice. As a result I have become better equipped to help the singers I work with to do the same. I’ve put in a LOT of work and much of it has been not only physically, but emotionally challenging. That being said, it has paid off. I feel I am singing better than I ever have and I am routinely pleased with the sound I make. This is different than in the past. Further, I’m more proud than ever of the teaching and coaching I am able offer. I routinely hear voices and changed and I feel well equipped to help them do that.
I’m not saying any of this to brag, but in hopes that you’ll see this as an important part of my journey, which has taken another exciting and unexpected path. A path I hope you might join me on.
After a good chunk of time singing mostly in private and studying to help find improvement in my instrument, I decided it was time to really explore in a more public way. I heard over a year ago of CIRCLESONGS, a workshop led by Bobby McFerrin around improvised singing and I knew immediately I needed to go. What better way to explore this voice I had worked so hard to change than to put myself in a setting where there were no mistakes. I have spent many years improvising with bands or instruments, but the thought of improvising with just voices was both terrifying and exhilarating.
In August, I made my way to the Omega Institute to participate and the experience was pretty much exactly what I’d hoped it to be. For the first couple of days whenever the entire group would gather (180+ singers) to improvise in a circle, I’d find myself in tears… often not able to sing. How beautiful the human voice is! What a privilege to participate in singing together. Once the feelings of overwhelming emotion became a bit less, I was able to spend a full week just singing. Singing in a safe space that faciliated play and exploration as well as growth in the human experience. I made great friends from all over the world and found myself feeling especially full, in a soul sort of way. See, I was reminded once again that when we share our voice, we share ourselves. It’s an undeniably wonderful feeling and one I am quite addicted to.
In light of that addiction, I came back to Chicago with the bug. For years clients have asked for gatherings around singing, but I’ve never known quite what we would sing together as a group. Folk songs? Hymns? What would everyone be down with. But, now I know! We’ll make our own songs, in the form of a circle. This happens all over the world. Why not in Chicago? So, I got 13 singers together to test the experience out. We were led by the stupendous Alison Wedding who happens to have spent years doing this kind of thing and actually teaches it at Berklee. I asked the singers if it would be ok to record the experience so that we could show others what it was like. It’s a hard thing to capture, spontaneous singing, but ultimately the experience was so wonderful and magical, how could we miss it!
The video above is exactly that. A brief glimpse into Circle Singing and something that I hope will become a monthly gathering space for ALL singers who want to share their voice. Look, the singers in the video… they’re pretty great. But, the beauty of this singing is that you don’t have to be. All you have to do is be willing to use your voice and I guarantee you’ll find value in the experience. Further, if you’re like me and you’ve been working on your voice… why not take the chance to explore! These gatherings will be just that. No mistakes. Only opportunities to use your voice. Your BEAUTIFUL voice!
I hope you’ll watch the video and feel welcome. You can learn more about what we’re doing and sign up HERE. You also don’t have to sign up. You can show up. Last minute. That is welcome too. The point is, I’m looking forward to hanging and singing with you.