“Like a tiny screwdriver drilling in my head”

Last night my singing class sang on a hill in Hampstead Heath overlooking London.

We usually gather in one of our member’s flat in Finsbury Park. But yesterday, because of the sunshine, someone suggested we meet on the Heath to sing our hearts out.

We sang as the scorching sun went down.

Around us, walkers walked, dogs cavorted, leaves rustled in the cooling breeze.

It was a perfect way to spend a summer evening.

This group of about twelve people has been singing together for about ten years now. I joined last year.

Our teacher, Guillermo Rozenthuler, is like a guru. His exercises I find have more to do with how to live than with just how to sing.

The main thing, he teaches, is to get over yourself. To step away from all your thoughts and inhibitions and just open your mouth.

Stop criticizing.

Stop using your mind.

Stop that damn censor.

How well his words relate to writing.

“Every time you worry about whether you sound good enough you are like a tiny screw driver drilling in my head,” he once told me.

“Insecurity is very noisy,” he said. “It throws everything off.”

So for those couple of hours once a week I try to do what he says.

I step out of myself and my insecurity.

I open my mouth.

I sing.

Deep, deep river. Lord….

photo by fofurasfelinas (flickr)

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8 Comments

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8 responses to ““Like a tiny screwdriver drilling in my head”

  1. I vascillated between revisiting horses or singing in my 50s. CHose the dangerous, expensive one, duh. Idiot.

  2. njaiswal

    Your photo goes very well with the piece. This is a much saner way to get away from the voices in your head than what I usually employ! My tool is denial. It is working pretty well for me, but since it is a negative tool, I’m pretty sure I’m going to burst at some point or the other. Lets see.

    Here’s a piece I wrote in one of those moments, take a look if you like.
    http://njaiswal.wordpress.com/2010/06/28/fact/

    Again, good post. 🙂

  3. Lovely and apt as always!

    Just sing. Just write. Just be.

    Very nice.

  4. ninakillham

    Nope, it was a good decision, Meg. I’m writing as fast as I can so I can revisit horses in my 60’s!

  5. This is sound advice. 🙂 thanks again Nina. xx

  6. WOW, what a fantastic insights for me! Just last night I danced publically and could hear myself excusing my mistakes while people tried to compliment.

    I scratched that off my bucket list and ironically, the next item is to take singing lessons. I will remember your teacher’s advice, “Insecurity is very noisy,” he said. “It throws everything off.”

    This is definitely my favorite line!

  7. Nina, beautifully honest blog entries about fear and insecuity and the creative process. I’ve recently read (for the first time) “Frankenstein” – and discovered – to my amazement – that the book is not about the “monster” but it’s all about Mary Shelley’s fear vis-a-vis her own creativity. Absolutely fascinating and the book hasn’t lost anything of it’s psychological relevance.

  8. Some interesting ideas that are applicable to writing. I like the sound of this guru of yours. He seems very swithced on to people’s emotions. A great find!

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