Before you read this, if you don't know who Florence Foster Jenkins is, watch this video.
Now, When I say that I want to sing like Florence, that doesn't mean that I want to adopt her technique, or her diction, or that I wish my tone matched hers. I am very grateful for my Instrument. However Madame Jenkins sang with every ounce of her being. she sang simply because she loved it and That's how I want to sing.
I have found, that it is so easy to get wrapped up in and consumed by technical perfection. As a student studying vocal technique this is very easy to do, and singers should all sing with a solid technique. But perfection isn't real, and I find that many times, the most beautiful moments come from imperfections.
We as singers have certain responsibilities; not only to our audiences, but to ourselves as well. We are communicators; we communicate ideas, emotions and beauty. In order to effectively communicate these things there are many elements that have to be brought together simultaneously. Technique covers a lot of these elements, such as intonation, diction, and tone. Musicality is another category which holds elements such as dynamics and tempo. Intention is the last category, and there are two types; the composers' intention and what we bring to that and how we interpret that. The other type is our own intention. I think this is probably the most important element, because audiences can see right through us.
Our intention is immediately present in our voices. If we are singing for recognition, then our performance will not be as relatable or moving as it would if we are singing for the truth that we find in that piece. Intention goes further than individual performances. What is the intention behind why we sing at all? I sing because it makes me feel beautiful, I sing because music moves me. I sing because I love to. I sing because it brings me joy. I sing because it connects me to people. I sing to bring beauty to the world.
Florence sang because music was her life, and she wanted to contribute to the beauty that is music. She knew that music is powerful and it's special. She also knew that she had a voice. You have a voice whether you consider yourself a singer or not. You have a voice and you can use it. If your intention behind your voice is love of music it doesn't matter if you're flat or if I can't understand a word you say. Keep singing.
They made a movie about Florence, I watched it a couple days ago, and I haven't cried that hard at a movie in a long time, I think Florence is an inspiration. Her passion inspires me, and I hope it inspires you too.
1/22/2017 10:30:06 pm
Loved this Bonnie. I also loved the FFJenkins movie. So much more to it than her voice!
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The Dorkie Diva
I don't remember exactly when I came up with this, but I think it is so fitting! I really am truly one of the biggest dorks in the world, especially when it comes to Opera and Music and I hope you can see some of that here on my blog! I also hope Then there is the other half which is my diva side, she is only allowed to show herself in my style, and on stage!