Welcome back to the grind! Winter break has come and gone far too quickly for my liking and I now find myself struggling to retain the sense of calm that I was basking in over the holidays. I was so stressed out before winter break and I really don’t want to be stressed again this early. So I am going to be proactive this year – I don’t want to be struggling to keep my cool in a few weeks.
I read an interesting article in the paper the other day. It was about things you can do to have a happier life. Among a list of different suggested activities that have proved to increase health and well-being was singing. The article suggested that joining a choir or a singing group has been shown to have positive effects on people.
If you type into a search engine “health benefits of singing“, the results are surprisingly plentiful. You’ll find medical journals, newsaper articles, and blog posts all about these benefits. To name a few: lower blood-pressure, decreaed stress, longer attention span and memory recall, increased “cuddle hormone” and the best benefit I found on the web over and over again is that amatuer singers experience a higher sense of well being after singing in a group than professionals do! What? Yes that’s right going and singing with a group will make you happier than _____________ (insert here your favourite happy singing superstar, whose life you often fantasize about having). Now those are benefits I want to experience!
I like to sing, but I’m not a great singer (I may be slighty tone-deaf). I sing in the shower, in my car, in my kitchen, pretty much anywhere that other people can’t hear me. I’m considering taking the advice of the article and joining a choir on campus. I would prefer one that doesn’t require auditions and is more about singing for fun not for performance. A group where my joyful off-key crooning will be drowned out by others who can hold a note.
I’ve done some research and I found a campus group that fits the bill. It’s the St. Mike’s Singing Club. This choir has no auditions, the only requirement is an enthusiasm for singing.
Originating in 2009, the club is made up of students, faculty, staff, and friends of the university and their repertoire includes a wide range of music from traditional to contemporary. The club meets most Thurday afternoons at 1:10 in the Parish Room, under St Basil’s Church on St. Joseph St. (east side of campus).
Now, I’m actually writing this post during the winter break, so I can’t actually survey the group in person. However, I will soon and I’ll let you all know what my experience was like.
This is one of the changes I’m going to try to make for 2012. I’ve always wanted to join a choir, so I’m going to do it. This is my resolution, I’m going to stop thinking about doing new things and actually try new activities in my spare time. Last term, I was off kilter and out of balance. I’m hoping adding activities like singing to my schedule will help to even me out.
I would also love to join a dance group for those with no formal training or naturally endowed rhythm. Anyone out there in the blogosphere know of any campus groups that let klutzes like me dance for fun?
I wait with bated breath and a tapping foot for your response.
Happy New Year!