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Growing Up, Being Forced To Perform In A Way I Couldn’t

May 16, 2020

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Expecting us to perform in a way we can’t is damaging. It feels like you’re not willing to find their skill and use that. But just automatically expect it from them.

I suck at singing, wait, I CAN’T sing. It’s something that is not for me.

Shocker, I was forced to do it. I don’t mean a gun to my head force or my mom made me do it, I mean I had to do it or lose points for not participating in class.

Remember when I told you my mom ruined my life at a Catholic school, there was a subject called music, translation, it was like choir. They expected us to know how to sing. Not everyone starts singing when they are toddlers. Singing is not for everyone.

They expected that out of you. No singing basics just threw us in it. I am not asking for a 3-hour class, just teach enough basics to sing the song on key.

When I moved to the burbs and went to a public school, the fine arts teacher put on plays or should I say, musicals since there was singing.

Everyone was required to sing. Everyone knows I cannot carry a tune to save my life. The teacher will say ‘use your singing voice.’ Uh, I CAN’T SING. Might I add she was also the choir teacher so why couldn’t she teach how to ‘use your singing voice?’

The 5th grade. Guess what happened. This teacher gave me a solo in one of the songs. Like WTF. I never auditioned or anything. I am not in the choir. I can’t sing. So why did she give me a solo?!

I was expected to perform a solo when I know damn good and well I can’t sing. The teacher expected me to be able to do so.

What universe makes these people think everyone on the globe is a talented singer? There were some students in the choir she could have given the solo to.

There was one solo I struggled to ‘sing.’ After class, a boy told me I was bad and made fun of me. Well, Karen, I NEVER WANTED THIS DAMN SOLO, THE TEACHER THINKS EVERYONE IS TAYLOR SWIFT. Even though Taylor’s career started in 2009/2010 and this happened in 2007.

This is what the teacher wanted? Me to get made fun of when it’s obvious I cannot sing? EVEN THE BOY KNOWS I CAN’T SING! I didn’t have bad anxiety at the time, if I did, I would have taken a zero over embarrassing myself and being made fun of.

Your singing voice is not supposed to sound like your talking voice. In my YouTube videos when I yell and overreact, my voice is higher, for example. I wasn’t even singing, more like mumble rapping.

I wish stuff like this was more inclusive and had more ways to be involved besides being required to sing. Anyone should be able to embrace what talents they have, not what you think/expect them to have. There are tons of ways

Making posters for the play

Being the Mcee

Tech crew

making props/outfits

ASSISTANT director

Tech crew would have fit me. I could have worked the camera, turned on/off the music, etc.

Lucky for me, I was saved the embarrassment because my mom couldn’t get me to the school for performing for the parents. I’m no expert, aren’t solos given to either the person with the most experience or you hold auditions for the solo? The teacher picks me when it’s clear I cannot sing.

It gave me the mentality that I have to do what someone expects me to know what to do rather than what I know how to do. And this teacher expected everyone to know how to sing. Well, I suppose everyone could sing but me. Autotune was a thing why couldn’t they autotune my voice?

I can imagine how this can damage some folks with anxiety as well. With everyone staring at you making you even more anxious etc.

This is one of the reasons why I joined YT. No singing requirements. If you know gaming, you do that. If you know make-up, you do that.

Things that are inclusive fit me, where I can pick what I am good at and go from there.

There are YT experts. They know you will not know everything about YouTube when you start. Unlike this, the teacher expected everyone to know how to sing.

Never took into account that not everyone starts singing when they are little or don’t have the luxury to get into it etc.

For those who see this as whining. The play was for a grade so I either embarrass myself or get a zero. The teacher randomly gave me a solo I didn’t volunteer as tribute for this. The ONLY thing that had try-outs were speaking parts. How did this teacher jump from the speaking part to SOLO?!

I feel if the teacher knew this, she would have created different roles you can sign up for rather than expecting everyone to sing.

We need more things that have diversity. A play with the only thing you can try is a speaking part, and giving solos to random people? That is not a great way to direct a play. In band solos are given to first chairs, they have the experience, right?

They’ve been playing X for so long.

I can’t sing. I was learning how to dance, a dance number (no singing) could have been a good fit or something to try out for.

Make your plays, and clubs diverse for everyone. Not everyone can sing, dance, etc, or have the luxury of parents who can sign them up for lessons and drive them to and from the lessons.

Imagine signing up for piano lessons and the teacher expects you to know how to play. You’re taking lessons because you DON’T KNOW how to play.

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