A stream of conciousness ramble written in haste and without thinking too much

By Jenny Seabrook, 1st Alto

I wanted to contribute a few short musings to the Blog just to say what fun and what an absolute joy and *release* I am finding singing with The Dowsing Collective!

Back in gloomy February I was moved to drop a very speculative email to Andrea. I had heard of the choir through my brother, who had written about them last year for a local magazine, and had a feeling it would be just my kind of music i.e. an eclectic mix of indie, pop, world music and more, without being too ‘choral’. But it had really been years since I had done *anything* for myself – I barely have time to read a book these days, let alone sing anywhere other than in the kitchen or shower – so I was a little tentative. Encouraged by my lovely husband, my family and a like-minded friend I was persuaded to take the plunge and make contact. Andrea duly replied to my email and, encouraged by her chirpy and (importantly!) non-formal tone, I dragged said friend with me (or did she drag me?) and we came along to a taster session. I was hooked!

As others will testify, the Collective is composed of people of all ages and from all walks of life. My own personal situation is that I am a very happily married Mum of two gorgeous kids. I work part time in publishing and have loads of fab friends, but still I felt, back then, that something in my life was lacking. It was an unknown quantity, but surely there had to be more to life than running around after family with the (very) occasional pub trip of an evening leaving me hungover and short-tempered?! I was constantly tired and if truth be told, a bit bored, and fed up of spending my days worrying and planning for other people. I wanted something for ME!

Four months down the line, I can truly say that for the first time in years, when I am singing at Dowsing, I am so engrossed that a two hour practice can fly past without me sparing a minute’s thought to the (inane but all-consuming) logistics of how I am going to pick my son up from swimming lessons whilst my daughter needs to get to Brownies, and damn! I need to do a Tesco shop, or, oh my goodness how, on earth am I going to make a full Tudor costume in time for that school trip to Kentwell Hall TOMORROW?!

In between these logistics and my husband’s commitments (he having long reaped the benefits of such therapy, being saxophonist and keyboard player in a local band), it has not been easy to make it to every practice. Occasionally I have had to FORCE myself from the comfort and familiarity of my routine to attend. But I can honestly say that each and every time, as soon as we start singing, the experience is so all-encompassing and uplifting that it is the only time – and I include work and socialising – in my week that I really have room for nothing else in my head but the beautiful sound we are making. It seems I have found that elusive unknown quantity!

As our (my first) big gig at Ely Cathedral approaches I am not nervous. Rather, I am incredibly excited and cannot wait to hear how amazing we are going to sound in such an awesome setting, as I have no doubt we will. Roll on 6th July!!