Mom wisdom

My mother loves owls, which I have always thought rather apt. She is a very wise woman. Of course, she thinks she’s completely ordinary, which just makes her insights into the rest of the world more potent. So here’s a quote — not because I love my mommy (which I do), but because she reminded … Read more

Fraidy-cats and want

What are you afraid of? It may very well be what you want most.  Everyone’s afraid of something. The tricky part is getting past the big, scary distance between you and that goal. Can you picture it?  Do you know what it will take, or at least what your next steps are?  Don’t let fear … Read more

Whitacre and the big “why”

This quote comes to us from the well-followed and much-liked Twitter account of epic choral composer Eric Whitacre.  If you’ve ever wondered why singing is unlike just about any other activity in the universe, try this on for size: I believe now more than ever that singing is a universal, built-in mechanism designed to cultivate empathy … Read more

An audacious “which came first?”

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When are you most brave?  Is it when you need your courage the most, or does your courage make things happen?  This chicken-or-egg question is an intriguing one, and writer Anaïs Nin was certainly no shrinking violet, either in the way she lived or in the way she faced adversity. Whether you rise to a … Read more

This week: Joyce, worth (re)quoting

Opera North has nicely dropped the perfect quote into our laps (thank you!), so we shall defer to Twitter for the dispensing of artsy wisdom this week: Beautiful #WednesdayWisdom from mezzo-soprano @JoyceDiDonato #WiseWords pic.twitter.com/0Lpi7LEUOu — Opera North (@Opera_North) June 22, 2016 Joyce DiDonato is undoubtedly one of the most charismatic divas to rise in the … Read more

The difference in seeing clearly

We talk a lot about talent, and we hear artists worry about it quite a bit.  But regardless of what talent you may or may not have, it will not go far without a clear vision of what you want, and the determination to get there.  Focus is so essential, yet we don’t practice it … Read more

A “pill” you can hear

We talk about the benefits of laughter.  We certainly talk about all of the things music can do for us.  But this sums it up:  the right dosage, at the right time, can change a day or a week.  Diligent practice can change our brains, our habits, and even our relationships.  Whatever you’re dealing with, … Read more

How they bounce in Japan

In the wake of yesterday’s post about resilience, let’s take a multicultural view of the art of bending without breaking: “Fall seven times and stand up light.” — Japanese proverb Resilience: Facing Down Rejection and Criticism on the Road to Success by Mark McGuinness If you’re an artist of any kind your work will be rejected … Read more

Hint: Don’t be nothing

Too many performers hang back, bound by fear.  We worry about what others think, what people say about our work, and how to avoid both negative words from others and the thoughts that invade our own minds.  We perform what we’re told to, believing we’re “too busy” projects that we’re personally excited about.  Of course, the external is … Read more

Better, now

Dreaming is all well and good.  Action is what makes a difference, for ourselves and in our world.  What if we were to take one of those great ideas and actually do something?  Pick one, and just start.  Do one thing.  Make a note about the next thing.  Then do that.  Imagine what could happen. … Read more

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