Eleven years ago I did my first Somatic Voicework™ training. At that time I was teaching alone and did not know how my work would be received by others. Since that time it has grown and now many people have participated in the courses, at Shenandoah during the full summer CCM Institute and at the other institutions where Level I training is offered: The University of Michigan Ann Arbor, The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, The University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond and now at City College of New York this coming weekend. It has been amazing to me to see this work go out into the world and be useful to others. I had no idea that I would ever train teachers nor did I ever envision an Institute of any kind anywhere.
I have found that many of the people who have gone through the certification courses have been interested in deepening their knowledge of the principles of the work and have stayed in touch with me and with the training over time. Some of them have become very knowledgeable about it and are working with it as their primary mode of teaching singing. We have an association of teachers of Somatic Voicework™ now and will be building our community through various other activities over time.
I am now faced with the unfortunate situation of realizing that there are individuals who have gone through the three day Level I course, and only that course, and are using Somatic Voicework™ on their resume and on their websites as a way to tell others that they have been certified (which is true) and that they use the work, but they have had no further contact with me, with anyone else who is secure in the method and have not had any further training beyond that first level. Word has gotten back to me that some of those people are saying things under the banner of Somatic Voicework™ that I would absolutely never say, not to anyone, and would never want anyone else to say, under my banner or not, to a student of singing. This is true of others who have gone through Level II and Level III as well, which is unfortunate.
So, if you are someone who has taken the training and you have not had any contact me with, with the Institute through Post Certificate trainings, with a Somatic Voicework™ faculty teacher anywhere, and do not participate in the chat room, and if you are most particularly only a Level I grad, please know that I want you to finish the levels as soon as possible and stay in touch with me. Very soon, we are going to make that a requirement and in order to keep using the logo and claiming to teach Somatic Voicework™ it will be necessary to stay in touch in some significant but as yet undetermined manner.
If you are someone who reads this blog and you encounter a teacher who is a Somatic Voicework™ teacher, understand that I can’t at this time guarantee that the person is actually teaching Somatic Voicework™ in any recognizable way.
Just generally, if you take someone’s work into your own life and make it your own, in my opinion, you have an obligation to honor that work by following it as closely as you can. Unless you are very very unusual, you won’t know if you are doing that until and unless you check in now and then to find out. That goes not just for me but for anyone’s work.