All the boys in our organization, besides being very talented, are extremely bright and really perceptive. In fact, as we begin our 38th season, I continue to be amazed and impressed with their quick wit and understanding of complex issues and situations. I believe choral music and being in our choirs allows this kind of critical thinking to blossom. And, current research backs this up too!
The (real) meaning of many songs is often hidden and not obvious . . . and only by exploration and a thoughtful process, does one discover the life-changing words come to life. It is our job to bring that meaning to our audiences as well.
I teach the boys that many words and phrases take on different meanings depending on how you say them. Take for instance, the following from one of our holiday songs:
“Throw the Yule log on, Uncle John”.
By making a punctuation change, it now reads:
“Throw the Yule log on Uncle John”.
Quite a difference!
At our recent summer camp, a new boy who had just moved into Tour Choir was having some problems. He told his camp buddy that things were just impossible for him … he was so homesick, the music was too hard and he had no friends.
His camp buddy wisely set him down and wrote out the following:
Impossible = I’m possible
He further counseled his new friend, that HE himself held the answers to making things happen, that by taking responsibility himself, anything was possible!
The two have become good friends and a great lesson was both shared and learned by simply making a punctuation change!
By the way, this is exactly what happened when I had this impossible idea to start a boys choir!
Here’s to another awesome concert season, 20/20 . . . the vision continues!