Singing on sand

Modifié le : 2019/07/14

Two and a half years of singing, guid­ed by a teacher, sur­round­ed by life, some­times sit­ting at my piano, push­ing notes, lib­er­at­ing this chakra or that oth­er one. Fifty-sev­en years push­ing my breath­ing out of myself, sur­round­ed by humans, machines, progress.

For the past thir­ty years or so, there had been a tenor who had been sleep­ing, who had been told not to sing too loud­ly, that he was break­ing through. Twen­ty years of choir rehearsals had killed a soloist. And then two and a half years lat­er, a teacher told the tenor to reap­pear. There is so much tur­moil some­times dur­ing these class­es. The pro­fes­sor patient­ly seems to know where he’s going. The stu­dent, on the oth­er hand, does the right thing, makes mis­takes, takes paths that the teacher imme­di­ate­ly tells him to aban­don. How­ev­er, these sud­den pro­hi­bi­tions do not resem­ble the old ones. The teacher is a prism or a capacitor.

It is cer­tain­ly too late for the tenor in me to go on a con­cert adven­ture, but that tenor is there in my voice. When I com­pare myself to my cho­ris­ter friends, I know that I have evolved. When I’m with real soloists, the com­par­i­son is just point­less. I am an hon­est peas­ant. They are princes and kings, with crowned voic­es. I plow my song, they are already reap­ing the ben­e­fits of so many years of effort.

A few days ago, a cho­ris­ter asked me what I would do with these class­es. I shrugged my shoul­ders and answered, smil­ing : noth­ing. I will prob­a­bly find myself a choir where it is allowed to sing with all the ener­gy I have with­out fear of bury­ing oth­ers. Not that I am for­bid­den to do so in the cur­rent choir, but I still have to con­stant­ly hold back, melt to the lim­it of the exer­cise and, since I am a tired tenor, my voice is not so won­der­ful in voic­es more used to being perched.

Singing requires and does not require hard work. This is appar­ent­ly con­tra­dic­to­ry. The best singing comes from a blind trust in his body. The best singing also belongs to those who are gift­ed at birth. For tomor­row’s con­cert, we will have a soloist as thin as a reed, with grace­ful and whis­per­ing ges­tures. When he starts singing, a lion, what do I say, a large vol­cano throws its Jupi­ter­ian voice into the church. Impressive !

For my part, I am still tam­ing my proud ears, which, in col­lu­sion with the ide­al­is­tic brain, are try­ing to shape my vocal cords, to make them into good sav­ages dressed in clothes that are use­less to them.

And yet, we still have to har­ness the ani­mals, chan­nel their light, their strength, a job of a life­time. Blessed are those who, like this soloist, a young adult, can dance nat­u­ral­ly with wild ani­mals. On my side, I sit in front of my piano, half wise, half mule. I open a score, I try to sing. Chakras, I tell you, doing so lib­er­ates chakras and light­ens digestion.

These lessons are of course use­ful to me. They are my med­i­ta­tion, my life. Just like these writ­ings, which are a lit­tle more dance­able. It is impor­tant to remain con­stant­ly in this state of grace and of a danc­ing chore­og­ra­phy since we are doomed to go in circles.

Our cir­cle is not eter­nal. It lasts only one cycle. We are not plan­ets, but sea­son­al plants. Tomor­row, our song will be sand in a desert that will be trod­den by oth­er melodies.