Role models

Bernadette & Friends8 April 2021

Can role models help us to realise our dreams?

We all have dreams big and small. A trip to New Zealand, learning to sing, stand on a big stage once, study after all ... The list is long. But we mostly only dream, and push the fulfilment of these dreams far away from us.

What can help us and encourage us to actively work towards realising our dreams? Role models play a central role, especially at a young age: someone with whom one identifies, whom one imitates or tries to imitate.

Role models live an ideal for us to strive for. They can bring meaning into life and counteract a feeling of inner emptiness. In difficult times, they can give us support and orientation.

I believe that someone becoming a role model is not a conscious decision, at least at first. It is a process that, in the best case, enables us to actually realise our dreams or come as close to them as possible.

If I have to name my musical idols, it's not so easy for me. The Beatles were one of them at a very early stage. Especially their album Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. When I was 4 or 5 years old, my father bought a Japanese tape recorder.
He needed it for his theatre performances, but at home he regularly used it to play the Beatles and this very album. I remember that as soon as I heard the Beatles, I took over the living room dancing wildly.

The East German record company AMIGA brought out its own jazz series during this time. So besides the Beatles, jazz also became my musical companion in Children's and Youth Days. One singer in particular impressed and touched me: Billie Holiday. Brecht and Weil also exerted a great fascination on me at that time. Later, I sang everything that was on the hit parades of the 80s. There were times when I grabbed everything that somehow looked like a Microphone and sang the songs I liked. Preferably in front of the big mirror in the bathroom, that sounded even better.

When I was in my early 20s and regularly performed on stage with a big jazz band, I was sure of my talent, but I was also aware that talent alone would not help me in the long run. And that's when my parents came into play ...

I grew up, as they say, in an artist's household. For me, it was quite normal that my parents worked as artists. They were known and respected in their professions and earned enough to give us a good and secure life as a family.

Of course, my parents' professions meant that other artists came and went in our house: Writers, painters, sculptors, dancers, actors and many more. So even as a child, I was witness to stimulating conversations, great parties and everything that we think of today as a "bohemian lifestyle".

But: my parents also had a strict work ethic. Every day my mother trained her body to meet the demands of being a ballet dancer. Back pain, injuries, marital crisis? It didn't matter. Early to training and in the evening to the performance. Often from Monday to Sunday. Then there were the matinees and tours.

As a child, I was taught how important it is to have an good recallable technique is to be able to cope even in stressful or difficult situations to be able to meet the demands of the audience and the demands on oneself. I probably unconsciously had the example of my parents in mind when I decided to take singing lessons in order to improve my vocal potential to further develop and raise it to a new level.

When I started teaching, I was studying theatre studies and modern German literature. Even then, music was an important part of my life and although I finished my studies, it was ultimately music and singing that became my profession.
Today, I pass on my experience and knowledge to all those who, like me back then, are looking for a way to improve their vocal abilities to improve. One of the questions I ask my students in the rehearsal lesson is: What are your musical idols, which songs do you spontaneously sing along with when you hear them?

Not everyone has a clear answer to this. And that is not necessary. It is often enough to think about: Why do I want to take lessons? Are there artists who particularly occupy or touch me? How do I feelwhen I sing? What has changed after I sang?

Singing has always made me happy. Although I was also ambitious, there was never any compulsion behind it, but simply a lot of joy. There were songs that I listened to and sang over and over again because I wanted to know: How does it work, what are my idols doing, what do I have to do to sound like them? My experience with it was: You keep doing it until you get it right. Then it becomes good, it becomes your own language.

Also today as Vocal Coach it is important to me to Singing technique never become an end in itself, but to use it as a proven means of enabling pupils to express themselves musically in the way they want to: with their own and distinctive emotional expression.

I hope I have encouraged you with this article to become active and to follow your dreams and role models. Are you drawn to the stage? Then take a look at my Online singing courses in.

Sing A Song - Be Happy

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