And so everything came to a halt, again…
In the first lockdown, last spring, all professionals in the arts were shocked. It was hard to believe that all would be cancelled and closed. Artist ending up with no work and no income. Everyone had to struggle to survive, nothing coud be taken for granted. However, this first Corona period brought us a few good things too. Many cultural professionals invented creative solutions to be able to perform one way or the other. And when the limitations were lifted, in the summer, the creative initiatives multiplied. I was able to pick up my favorite profession again… performances may not have been profitable all the time but I could sing again! Teaching started up slowly too. With a couple of afdjustments and good safety measures it was possible to start coaching individual singers again. Even some choirs carefully started up rehearsals, in small groups, often in the open air. But at least, something was happening!
And then came the second lockdown…. And everything came to a halt, again. In the meantime I have seen choirs dissolving. Too many incertainties and too much desparation to go on. There are other choirs that declared a choir-break. And so they haven’t been singing for the last four months. People are despirited, a heart-breaking situation. In these last couple of months I, and so many other singers, have noticed that the lack of actively making music is not an option. I miss singing both physically as mentally. Cathing a cold in the fall and winter was never a problem because the resonace of singing would vibrate through my nose and head cavities and the cold would have no chance to settle. Now it has. Bad moods would be chased away when working together at beautiful choir music. Now the dark clouds keep hovering over my head all day. So I had to take action.
First of all we have to focus on the possibilties, not the impossibilities. I can still coach singers online (provided I know them and their situation beforehand). Besides, choirs have alternative ways to sing together too and home recording has become so easy with such high quality that it offers great possibilities too. But I will get into that specifically in my next blog. For now it is important to stay positive and look towards a brighter future. The restrictions have been imposed for a very long time but there’s hope at the end of the road. People are getting vaccinated (although pretty slowly here in the Netherlands) and so we may hope for more possibilities, for our profession too, this fall. Besides, our society has been deprived of any cultural event for a long long time. People will want to go to theatres and concerts again. Or sing in a choir or take lessons. Our audience is hungry to see and hear live performances once again.
Let’s go on re-inventing ourselves to be prepared fort he renewed interest in our beautiful profession! Good luck doing that and keep up the spirit for a little longer!