Singing with Cici and Firoza
Volunteer Cici and Friday Member Firoza have kept up their weekly singing sessions during the last three months of lockdown. Meeting on Zoom to learn, practice and perform 🎤 each session begins with some vocal warm-up exercises: "MA MA MA....ZA ZA ZA...WAA WAA WAA..." before getting to grips with the song they're working on. We caught up with them both to discover the joys of singing...
While the centre was open, on Friday, the day I attend, Cici and I would regularly have a singing session which I thoroughly loved doing! I was excited to know that we could continue having our session while we're all staying at home, on Zoom, that was great news! And I appreciate Cici giving her time to do this, it really has helped me get through this lockdown, knowing I have something fun to look forward to every week! I choose songs and sometimes Cici will suggest a song.
At the moment we are working on 'By your Side' by Sade, suggested by Cici, which is a beautiful song. Cici plays on her keyboard and we do warm ups, which I'm getting used to, they can be rather funny at times, especially when I first started doing them, the kinds of sounds and noises we end up making, and we end up giggling. But it all helps, you can hear and feel the difference post warm up, and then I sing. I enjoy it very much, thank you Cici!!
Firoza and I have been singing together for a couple of years now, starting off at the centre whenever there is space for us. It began as an offshoot to the '60's girl group'/singing group we were running on Fridays, with some of the other members, and the song choices have kind of stayed in that area, very soul-y and r'n'b-y. Firoza really loves Florence And The Machine too, so we have been singing some of her tunes. For lockdown we went a bit slower, and it's so lovely to hear Firoza sing something a bit different. 'By Your Side' by Sade is such a lovely, mellow, yet deceptively difficult song to sing, and I think it really brings out Firoza's tone in a lovely way, and gives her a chance to make it her own.
The online sessions usually start with a bit of chatting, it's nice to connect with someone outside your household and see how the week has been. Then we do some warming up of the voice, focusing in on different aspects, like the breathing, the support and tone. Zoom isn't the ideal medium as it cuts out a bit of the sound but it works.
Over the last few months we have worked on 'Space Oddity', 'Mr Postman' and 'By Your Side'. Hopefully, when the time is right, we can go and do the radio show that we had planned for Spring and Firoza might sing something for us.
For now, here's a snippet of the work in progress....
Watch the melody unfold here: