We arrive on a Saturday and meet for a communal supper. Our singing work begins Sunday. We sing each day for 6 days, ending with a communal supper on Friday night. Each day there will be time to enjoy each other’s company; participate in various extra-curricular activities; or simply relax in a gorgeous natural environment.
We spend 2+ hours per day in the singing workshop. This includes moderate movement – think expressive dance or tai chi – no one is pushed to do that which they are not willing or able to do. You will be exposed to various elements of the singing practice – always mindful that the JOY of singing is the primary focus here. Singing outside of the workshop hours is highly encouraged.
Here's what will be included in the daily singing sessions:
Do not expect sheet music – there probably won't be any. The ability to read music is not required. Most songs will be either taught by ear and we may even create some collaboratively, on the spot!
Expect to have fun while learning new skills, expanding your own expressive territory, and singing as a group. The web is full of articles outlining the many physical and psychological benefits of singing with others. These benefits include: enhanced social engagement and sense of belonging; release of tension and anxiety; increased sense of well-being, calmness and resolution; cardio vascular and respiratory health; alleviation of muscle tension and physical aches and pains; enhanced listening skills; an improvement in general alertness; and elevated endorphins. Here is an article that briefly outlines how singing changes your brain. Here is a compelling TEDTalk about how singing together benefits us.
Do not expect perfection! This workshop is for singers of varying abilities. Each singer is a valued member of the group, no matter their ability or musical background. You will be encouraged to participate with open-heartedness, non-judgement and a willingness to do your best.
There is no planned concert at the end. We are singing for ourselves. That said, if people decide they want to gather on the beach or town square to share, no problem!
We schedule each retreat to include trips to local points of interest. There is also plenty of free-time to relax enjoy the surroundings.