I have had conversations recently with three different women about the phenomenon of ‘not being able’ to sing. Each had brought the identity of ‘non-singer’ with them from childhood, but each now had a different relationship with that identity.
The first has been singing in a choir for a few years now. She joined when she was in her fifties, having believed since the age of 11 that she couldn’t sing, because somebody had told her so. But she always rather wanted to nonetheless, so went along to join the choir with much trepidation and discovered to her pleasure that she could after all.
The second was a participant in a workshop I ran recently who had come along to accompany her daughter. She confessed to enjoying the session, but was worried that she was spoiling it, because she couldn’t sing. ‘But of course I sing to my daughter,’ she mentioned as an afterthought.