Do you need to sing?
Whether you are 7 or 70, there may be a deep longing for you to express yourself through your voice. I have come to believe that it is really important to pay attention to this longing and open the door so that your voice can soar.
This is one of the most beautiful gifts we have in being human, to sing. You may not aspire to be a ‘famous singer’ or the centre of attention on a stage, but you still long to sing. I believe that longing is something beautiful inside of you that needs to be honoured and celebrated, even if it is for you alone.
From my own personal journey with rediscovering and releasing my own voice, I have been able to help many others release theirs. It is a great joy to journey with a child, teen or adult in this musical way. You can read more of my personal story of finding/releasing my voice down below.
To come to singing lessons is different than learning an instrument because the instrument for the voice is YOU! Our time together is more of a mentorship relationship and the process requires vulnerability, hard work, determination and courage. Lessons can be set up per session or a for a monthly fee when there is a full year commitment.
Per Session: 30 minute ($35) 45 minute ($55)
Monthly Fee: for commitment Sept – June 30 minute weekly sessions ($125 – 3.5 lessons per month with school holidays) 45 minute weekly sessions ($175 – 3.5 lessons per month with school holidays)
Scholarships may be available upon request
Cathy’s Singing Story
My singing story began as a young girl in Harrison Hot Springs. I grew up on church property and so on one part of the property was my home and on another part of the property was the church where my father was the minister. I could go into that sacred space and be there all by myself. As a child, it seemed large and beautiful. It was there, especially when I was alone, that I loved to sing. I would sing and dance and allow my voice to carry through that space.
Over time, I heard messages that didn’t encourage this love of singing. I heard things like; “you are too loud! Stop making so much noise! I’m trying to concentrate – go sing somewhere else. You are embarrassing!” etc. There were little windows where the love of singing would burst out again, as in my brief time in Uganda at the age of 21 or when I was alone with children. I knew that children would be safe and so I could allow myself to dare to sing with them. However, my confidence in myself or in my voice was severely shaken. My voice came to represent more than just my singing. It meant so much more. My voice was about me. Having lost courage with my voice was about having lost courage with myself. Did I have value? Did I have the right to take up space in the room with my sound? Am I too much? Too vibrant? What if I really let out how I feel? What if things get out of control?
When I was in my late 20s and lived in Atlanta, GA, I became quite sad and depressed. Things were challenging in my life at that time and I lost a sense of vitality and joy. I sought out help and one person asked me this simple question; “Cathy, what do you want?” I didn’t know. I became very silent. I didn’t know what I wanted. I knew what everyone else around me wanted and what I thought I SHOULD want. But to truly say what I wanted was a foreign concept to me.
I lived with this question for a long time but then one day, as I pressed the cross-walk sign to cross a street, I became aware of a longing deep inside of me. It bubbled up from the centre of my being and floated right up to my face. This bubble told me one thing: “I want to sing.” I was so surprised. It felt so fragile and vulnerable. This came from a very deep part of me. Immediately I heard old voices coming at the bubble. One of these voices said; “That’s not practical!” Another voice said, “Who do you think you are to sing?” I could feel the bubble sliding back down. I realized in this moment that this was a life decision. If I sang, I would be on the journey towards life. If I didn’t, a part of me would deepen into sadness and depression.
Shortly after that I joined a community choir. I learned to sing with them over the following 3 years. Every Tuesday night I went to rehearsal and learned to sing many beautiful classic choral works. The music was so beautiful it touched my sadness. I often ran from rehearsal to the bathroom where I would run into a stall and cry my eyes out. Then I’d wash my face and return to the choir. They were a beautiful group who just loved me through my pain. At the end of the 3 years I tried for a 1 line solo. People said my voice sounded like bells. I cried. Perhaps I would learn to sing after all.
At that time, I returned to the Fraser Valley of BC. I decided to take the voice journey further and signed up for private lessons through a local university. It was a big deal for me to spend that money on myself and learn some more skills with singing. However, I found the process very stressful. I couldn’t seem to get the exercises right and I found myself tight and unable to progress. I felt stuck in taking the next step and I found the lessons were making things worse the more stressed I became. So, eventually I quit and sought out other methods. I read books, listened to programs and sought out mentors. In this eclectic journey, I stumbled upon some things that really helped to unlock sound in me. I also continued on a personal healing journey of my heart.
To my surprise, the more I healed in my heart, the more my voice became open and free. The healing of my heart made me softer and more open. Being softer and more open affected me physically to not be as tense and stressed, which affected how I released sound. The combination of new methods and inner soul work allowed my range to broaden higher and lower and to find new colours of tone and texture that I had been longing for.
To release this inner voice has been one of the most satisfying and rewarding aspects of my life. The reward has not come from outer accolades, but from the inner joy of expressing who I truly am. This is beyond any financial value, this is an immeasurable pleasure for which I am truly grateful.