Susan Eichhorn YoungComment

The Last Day of Summer...

Susan Eichhorn YoungComment
The Last Day of Summer...
Labor/Labour Day musings...

This day represents the end of summer and the beginning of the fall season.

For those of us in the business of show - we begin the season!

Summer schedules turn to fall,  we begin to gear up again!

Someone asked me the other day what my advice would be to singers entering fall season.

I share with you my OWN advice and what I am continuing to discover.  This year, 2012, my family and I had a summer.  We continue to heal physically and emotionally and psychically from our car accident, but we are MOBILE!  We could enjoy the long days,  laugh,  not have more surgeries and ongoing doctors' and surgeons' appointments to schedule. I am not singing yet...YET.  It will come soon - but I am still dealing with physical issues that make it tough to support for any length of time. I have about 65% of my right hand - no Chopin YET - but I can fake it well enough to teach. (Have you noticed singers?!) I still have soft tissue swelling and spasms and PTSD that I am working on.  But I am alive!!!  I get great energy from my family, from the friends I love and from my students who give me HOPE and POSSIBILITY!  We were able to spend time with Erin (our daughter) and her boyfriend outside a trauma unit,  with my best friend Irena and her husband Ted - who have been mentors and friends and teachers always;  with students in Toronto in August for the first time since before the accident;  with my family out west in Canada - mom and siblings and nieces and nephews.

So, what can I look forward to this fall season and pass on to you?

My biggest teach-able learning is this:  How to be PRESENT in my life.

As working artists we are constantly chasing the next job.  Once we have a job,  we know it isn't going to be there forever, so we are constantly looking forward.  That is something we have to do for survival.

May I suggest to you that even though survival is CRUCIAL,  learning how to be PRESENT in our NOW is just as crucial.  Yes, but...

Yes, but...nothing.

Trust me on this.  PRESENT in the MOMENT is key to discovering your next.  If we are chasing our next so much we cannot BE where we are,  we cannot afford to express what we need to, as artists, as human beings, as performers.

I have learned that the PRESENT is all we have.  We can plan,we can stew, we can worry - and it doesn't change anything about NOW.  So what if we simply embrace NOW and do what we can NOW and live NOW in order to achieve our potential?

When I was in the trauma unit and then in the rehab hospital,  I had to release what I could not do.  It didn't help me to actually re-learn how to do anything.  I had to relinquish "I used to be able" and "I want to be able",  and say what do I DO NOW?

Once I was able to give myself permission to be where I was,  I began to learn again.  I learned how to walk differently,  how to bend my leg eventually. I learned how to hold a fork, how to write with my left hand, how to rejoice in the smallest things that gave me more ability!

"I want to be on Broadway".  "I want to sing at La Scala".  These are not PRESENT.  These create stress.  These create obstacles.

Where are you NOW? What can you do NOW?  What takes you from present to present?

Each step is so important.  EACH step.  No matter how big or how small, no matter how significant to the outside world,  if it is significant to YOU it allows you to rejoice in your present.

It might be worthwhile to explore what "being on Broadway" or "La Scala" or "the Met" means to you really.  Is it the actual PLACE or is a state of BEING?

Being is NOW.  Being is progression.  Being is success with each awareness and discovery.

I think I want to change to those places to this:

I want to be ME - in its fullest and most magnificent form.  Where I am ME is UP TO ME at each step of the journey.  My choice, my work, my journey.

Happy Fall!

Susan Eichhorn Young covers all things voice—strong and sophisticated singing and speaking. 

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