Friday, November 14, 2003

Bwa Bwa-dop

Spring of '99 introduced me to the strange and wonderful world of a cappella linguistics. Over the next few years my vocabulary expanded exponentially with "behr wehr"s and "leh-deh-deh"s, not to mention hours upon hours of "oo"s and "ah"s. Whether we crammed into a teeny-tiny practice room, savored the acoustics of the stairwell or were blessed with the use of an actual classroom with piano, our group of 12-18 women occupied some room of the Humanities building anywhere from 6-16 hours a week. Come spring of '01, Acting 101 gibberish exercises flowed off my tongue as I simply recited my a cappella parts to my partner in varying tones.

Mostly we stood in a circle, singing in toward each other. There's no sound like it-- being part of it, immersed in it. The sad part is that I never fully appreciated the succulent sound of our lovely divas until May 14, 2001-- the last time we ever stood in a circle and sang to each other, tears rolling down our faces, voices quaking from the pain of our best mix in 3 years being separated. A number of our "founding members" were graduating and moving on-- myself included.

That summer I finally began to truly cherish the friendships made in those cramped quarters-- to understand that the harmonies clicked so well because we clicked so well. And let me tell you-- finding a mix of about 15 women that can cram into a small, hot, sweaty, stinky practice room and get along is nothing short of a miracle. Heck, it's a miracle to get that many girls to get along at a luxury spa...

We sang beautifully together. We inspired each other. Well, they inspired me at least. If it weren't for their confidence, their sass, their belief in me (their putting up with me) I wouldn't be working on music right now. I guess I'd be in Madison, WI or Chicago, IL in some advertising job. Or I'd be across the world in a mission field. Instead, I'm in Music City, USA-- at my own sort of job in my own sort of mission field.

Even if we are not always in touch, the women in that group will forever be with me: spinning in my cd player, ringing in my ears, breathing passion into in my heart--carrying me through every movement in the score of life.