Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Sometimes having voice for one's primary instrument is the most frustrating existance. Instrumentalists can practice for hours, working out passages and gaining muscle memory. The weather doesn't really affect them, sore throats don't affect them, talking too much doesn't affect them, going to a basketball game doesn't affect them. Yet, if one is a vocalist, a rainy day will change your voice from the way it was the day before. If there is a hard passage, you can only practice it for so only before your voice gets tired and you sound like Miss Piggy with a cold. And if you try to practice more, it just gets worse. There can be no screaming, yelling, shouting, talking too long or too late. There can be no abundance of dairy or sugar, and definately no soda pop or alcoholic beverages. There is certain timing between eating and singing, and what you eat and what you sing. And sleep...if there is not enough of it, everyone knows. There is not much room for faking anything with the voice. It betrays everything that is going on inside you as soon as you open your mouth.

The other day a fellow vocal major and I were walking outside and heard uproarious yells and screams from across campus. The yells sounded fantastically abandoned and zany. We agreed that we sometimes wished we weren't vocal majors, just so we could scream and yell and not care. Yet we must live under the false pretense of being a reserved vocal major.



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