On making meaningful changes.

Habits have been my nemesis since forever. (Building the good ones, that is.) We are inundated with ways in which to self-improve our lives, our health, our diet, our mind, our productivity, our practice, our relationships, our accounting, our time, etc. Just about...

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The theft of wildness.

Last summer while visiting my family's favorite spot in Maine, my little one Adrian and I were joyfully clambering over some of those ancient glacier-scraped rocks on the shoreline by our cottage. Alas, we were quite shocked when came upon a dead harbor seal pup who...

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The music chooses you.

I want to share one of the most defining moments of my life. A sophomore, I was in my college dorm room and had just cued up a new CD that just arrived in the mail. (Remember that?)I heard the first strains of the first track, and immediately felt my whole body and...

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Relieving the ego’s pain points.

I know I'm not the only person around who wants things.The things that we want come in many different shapes and sizes, but I am talking about the Big Things.The things that our inner being is calling out for. The things that, if we look closely enough, cause us the...

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The wisdom of Rest

I am taking some time away up on the coast of Maine with my family for two weeks. (Two weeks. It seems like two years!) It's such a vital reflection point, taking the space and time to remove yourself from the regular comings and goings of life and work. It seems like...

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How to be patient

Do you know Frog and Toad? They are *wonderful* anthropomorphic children's story characters (but really, these stories are for adults). In a story titled "The Garden," Toad comes to visit Frog one day, and sees his glorious and abundant garden. My goodness! he...

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The pursuit of greatness

What does the term greatness bring up for you? I believe we all strive to realize our best, and seek our own, personal version of greatness in our lives.  But somehow, when it comes to music, art, the voice, and personal expression, we tend to relegate "greatness" to...

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How to make beautiful sound

W R I T T E N  B Y  Allison Mondel Last night I was scurrying home from the grocery store, and pulled into my driveway just after dusk. As I was gathering my bags from the trunk, I turned to look up at the chilly sky. (I always look up whenever I am outside.) I spied...

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Naked singing

W R I T T E N  B Y  Allison Mondel No, no, no. Not what you think. Not really, anyway. But why does singing sometimes feel so naked? Especially when you are going solo. Just you and your voice. You and your sound. You and your thoughts. (Oh, the thoughts!) You and...

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“with heart and mouth”

How can we stay centered on the deeper purpose of our singing?

We learn how to focus our awareness in order to focus on our purpose. Awareness heightens the senses and calms the thinking mind. It connects us with our instrument, and keeps us focused.

As Hildegard states, and as I teach in the Studio, we focus our awareness on our heart. The heart is the seat of the Sacred Voice. It is here that we are both connected to our divine source, and here that we experience that longing to praise the very same divinity.

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Allison Mondel
Allison Mondel is a musician, philosopher, advocate, and mentor. Her greatest delight is to understand how things work, and share her hard-won wisdom with others. She writes about the higher nature of music and the voice, alchemizing personal roadblocks, and the pursuit of one's creative vocation.

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