It was on this floor that I learned how to let go, how to let loose.
I’m at The Banff Centre which I call “the artist spa”. Never am I treated so well as an artist as when I am here. If you are here as an artist on residency or attending a workshop you are given an ID card that says ARTIST beside your picture. Suddenly identity becomes apparent. You swipe your artist card to get into the gourmet buffet and sit at tables marked ARTS, you swipe your artist card to get into the pool, the gym, the climbing wall. You show your artist card to get 10% off massages, you show your artist card to get free tickets to shows by other artists.
I’m here for the Advanced International Voice Workshop with Richard Armstrong. I’ve been working with Richard since my early 20s and his ability to reach inside and draw out exactly what one’s voice needs never ceases to amaze me. Richard says *the voice is the muscle of the soul”.
In the morning after the breakfast buffet (which includes an omelet bar and coffee tea service) we each arrive at the studio and begin to roll on the floor.
Rolling is an integral part of what Richard teaches. It allows one to let go. It is liquidity. It is skin. It is gravity. It is our place in the world. And with the rolling our breath opens and releases. When the breath releases the voice releases as well.
A documentary about Richard is being filmed while we are here. It is strange to have cameras in the room while doing this deep work but Craig Hall, the filmmaker, just did Richard’s introductory workshop last week and he understands. He is one of the vocal tribe. He rolls on the floor with us with his camera sometimes. His camera becomes his voice.
It’s day 4 of 10. All fifteen of us are working deeply. All fifteen of us are baring our voices to each other, to the room, to the mountains, to the sky.
My happy place
Bookmaking below the mountains
Pre-publish Banff views
My room at the artist spa includes a view of our studio.