Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Music lessons

Sophie loves to sing. Since she was a toddler, she would delight us with her sweet voice. As she got older, the once familiar nursery-rhyme songs turned not only to show tunes and pop music but also to original, lyrical creations of her own. I love that she finds joy in making music. I started my own music lessons at the age of eight. Now that she was the same age, what better Christmas present than to offer her singing lessons with a local teacher.

Tonight was the big night! I picked Sophie up at her dad's house. She was dressed in her Sunday best and wriggling into her golden slippers when I had to remind her of the snow on the ground and the need for boots. She obviously wanted to make a good impression. She also brought a journal and small matching notepad so that she and the teacher could make all necessary notes. Excitement was mounting ...

The teacher lives on a winding back road; it was an adventure just driving up the snowy hill. When we arrived, I asked Sophie if she wanted me to stay or leave her and come back at end of the lesson. Sophie chose time alone with her new teacher which I thought was very brave. She could not wait to meet her and jump into this whole new experience. She also needed to be assured that, if she practiced and stayed committed, I would keep my end of the bargain and continue to take her to weekly lessons.

I left Sophie and returned later to find her singing in front of a music stand while the teacher was accompanying her on the piano nearby. I had quietly let myself in and it was such a lovely moment to watch her singing so freely, her back to me and unaware that I was in the room. She seemed to be having fun and the teacher seemed pleased with her new pupil. "Sophie has such a pretty voice."

My dad and my maternal grandmother loved to sing. I have an old, old recording of them and other family members singing at my christening. They are, of course, all gone now - all the voices who expressed themselves in song, who found strength in music.

It warms my heart to know that a new voice will be heard, a new generation. Sophie, welcome to the club!