Time to say goodbye

For Wordless Wednesday, let me share with you a video of Chantalyne singing “Time to say goodbye” last weekend.  This performance earned her the title of Vars Idol 2013 (a father’s right to brag a little).


(Somehow the embed seems to have stopped working. The video on YouTube is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPG-nX_jmoQ.)

Name Your Tune

Just in time for Wordless Wednesday, here comes a “scriptless” film. This film, co-staring Alison Postma and Chantalyne, comes with a message: the importance of making your work your own. Don’t just copy someone else’s work; build on it. Put yourself into it. Make it your own.


Please note that this video has also been cross-posted at http://www.seo-writer.com/writers/index.php/2013/01/09/scriptless-with-chantalyne/


Singing Lessons Part III

We have a lesson to offer from the third of three songs our daughters performed at their singing lessons end-of-classes performance for parents and families.

Chantalyne sang “Chasse Galerie” by Claude Dubois. It is a song that demands a powerful voice. Unfortunately, as I mentioned in an earlier post, two days before the show we feared she would have to bow out, as her voice had not yet returned after a hacking cough that had commandeered much her past three weeks.

Her voice did return, although not quite as strong as normal and not quite as strong as it should have been for this number. Don’t get me wrong – she sang it very well and it was one of the better singing performances there. But it was not her best.

Nevertheless, her performance was riveting. And at the very end of the song, she delivered what we refer to as the “show stopper” moment.

There is more to everything than meets the eye. There is more to a great sports performance than just coming in first. How you play the game is just as important. How you behave off the field counts, too. How you treat other people. What else you do with your life.

And there is more to singing than just singing.

Watch the video and see why we call this such a show stopper. Then think about all the things you are trying to achieve in your life – land a new job or change careers, upgrade your home or move, build a new relationship or strengthen an old one – and figure out what other aspects you might be overlooking. What else goes into success besides the obvious? What else can you do that others won’t expect to add value? To catch their attention? To impress them? To win them over?

Lyrics to Chasse Galerie

À force de rester dans la forêt à s’ennuyer
Le diable est venu les tenter
Il fallait deux semaines
Quand la glace s’était en aller
En canot pour s’en retourner

C’était déjà l’hiver les grands froids
Nous mordait les pieds
Impossible de s’en aller

C’était déjà Noël le Nouvel An montrait son nez
Tous les hommes voulaient s’en aller
Le diable guettant comme un rapace son gibier
Vint leur offrir tout un marché

Dans un canot dans le plus grand que vous ayez
Installez-vous là sans bouger
Quand minuit sonnera ton canot d’un coup bougera
Il s’élèvera pour t’emporter
Mais si l’un d’entre vous après la fête terminée
Manque le bateau vous périrez

Et chez le grand Satan vous irez brûler ignorés
Ignorés pour l’éternité
Le canot s’éleva jusqu’au ciel ils furent emportés
Jusqu’à leur village tant aimé
Chacun revint une fois la fête terminée
Sauf le dernier sans y pensé
Posant le pied en embarquant s’est retourné
C’est retourné sans y penser

Alors le grand Satan dans un tourbillon de brasier
Tous et chacun à emporter
Le plus jeune d’entre eux
Le plus méfiant le plus peureux
Gardait comme un bijou précieux
Une prière à tuer les diables de la terre
Et quand il l’eut enfin citée
Comme des étoiles furent soudainement libérées
Devant leur cabane isolée

Singing Lessons Part I

Last week, my two daughters performed before the collected parents and families of their singing class at the Maison des Arts in Embrun. Thirteen kids ( 8-14 years old), one adult, eighteen songs, lots of fun.

And lessons, always lessons.

As I was playing back the video recordings we made, I realized there was a lesson to be learned from each of them. So there were lessons from these singing lessons.

In the video below, Chantalyne sings “Destin” by Celine Dion, the opening number at the show. It was a good choice to open with, because she got the crowd revved up – not that a crowd composed of the various singers’ families really needed revving up.

It was, in our opinion, the best singing performance of the evening. This is where you are supposed to nod your head wisely and say to yourself, “He will now lecture us on the virtues of hard work and perseverance and practice to achieve excellence.”

Well, not quite. You see, in the three-and-a-half weeks prior to the show, Chantalyne spent the first week and the third week sick, some of it with fever and all of it with a horrible, hacking, bronchial cough. In fact, two days before the show, we feared she would have to bow out, as her voice had not yet returned and the coughing continued only partially abated.

She really had very little time to practice.

But since you came here expecting a lecture on the virtues of hard work and perseverance to achieve excellence, who am I to disappoint? In fact, there was a lot of hard work building her voice up in general prior to getting sick, over a period of months. She took formal voice lessons twice a week. She practiced at home. She worked hard.

And once the fever was gone, she started to practice without her voice.  You see, there are three things a singer need to be able to deliver:

  • The words – she needs to know the lyrics backwards and forwards.
  • The timing – she needs to know exactly when to jump in (not a tenth of a second too soon or too late) and the exact pace to match the music.
  • The voice – she needs to be on-key for every note

So while still sick, she started working on the lyrics and on the timing under her breath. Yes, perseverance is worthwhile. Don’t let a little thing like a missing voice keep you from singing. Or crutches keep you from running. Or a poor memory keep you from whatever.  Figure out what you can do, and just start doing it.

Lyrics to Destin

Ya pas de voiles aux volets de mes frères
Ya pas d’opale autour de mes doigts
Ni cathédrale où cacher mes prières
Juste un peu d’or autour de ma voix.

Je vais les routes et je vais les frontières
Je sens, j’écoute et j’apprends je vois
Le temps s’égoutte au long des fuseaux horaires
Je prends, je donne avais-je le choix?

Tel est mon destin
Je vais mon chemin
Ainsi passent mes heures
Au rythme entêtant des battements de mon coeur.

Des feux d’été je vole aux sombres hivers
Des pluies d’automne aux été indiens
Terres gelées aux plus arides déserts
Je vais, je viens ce monde est mien

Je vis de notes et je vis de lumière
je virevolte à vos cris, vos mains
La vie m’emporte au creux de tous ses mystères
je vois dans vos yeux mes lendemains

Je vais les routes et je vais les frontières
Je sens, j’écoute et j’apprends je vois
Le temps s’égoutte au long des fuseaux horaires
Je prends, je donne avais-je le choix?

Je prends le blues aux signaux des répondeurs
Je prends la peine aux aéroports
Je vis l’Amour à des kilomètres ailleurs
Et le bonheur à mon téléphone.

Tel est mon destin
Je vais mon chemin
Ainsi passent mes heures
Au rythme entêtant des battements de mon coeur.