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Freedom to sing for all

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Freedom to sing for all! YES, EVEN THE TONE DEAF!

Once, there was a little 5-year old girl who loved to sing and to make a whole lots of sounds. She loved to converse with the birds and the wind, she loved to run across the land with her arms wide open and shout silly things to the universe. And dance, and jump and climb trees and mountains... But her parents were facing real hard times and were very stressed. So day after day they would say to her things like: "Stop! You're giving me a headache", "Be quiet, I can't concentrate", "You're too loud", "Shut up!!!!" She started to think that singing and making sounds were a bad thing and that serious people did not want that in their life. But then she discovered that this was not a definite rule. For example, her mother sang when she was happy, and even when she was sad. And nobody told her to stop. She took her to the opera, where people sang very loud and very high and it made people clap their hands with excitement for a long time. So the little girl concluded that it was just her voice that was too ugly to listen to and too dangerous, since it was giving her parents terrible headaches. And of course she did not want to hurt them because she loved them very much. So she became quiet, she grew sad and eventually fell sick.

And now, instead of singing and running around with the wind, she began to hide in closets and create an imaginary world where everyone was allowed to sing and dance, and even scream. Of course, that world was a little bit chaotic when looked at from the outside, and sometimes overwhelming, even to her. But soon, she realized that the inhabitants of her world, including herself, had conveniently become deaf to one another, so the screaming did not bother any of them. It was a great feeling, at first, to be able to return to the same kind of freedom she had felt in the past, before it had become a problem. But then, as she started populating her world with her imaginary friends and when they all became deaf to each other, she realized that they were each of them alone, while together in the same place. And that was not so fun anymore, because no one played with the others. And then she started to miss her parents, too.

So, she visited her imaginary world less and less, until she stopped going there all together and even forgot the place had ever existed.

The little girl's parents loved her very much. So when they saw that she was so sad and so ill, they decided that it was time to shake her up and take her out of her silence. They remembered how much she loved to sing and dance and jump around and make all these sounds. So they took her to a very famous professor who was highly specialized in teaching kids how to dance, and another one who was the best at teaching kids how to sing, and another one who would teach her how to make sounds with an instrument.

All these highly specialized professors were great. Or so all the adults said. They had a great reputation. They taught you how to get in line and how to endure and how to be serious and dedicated and become highly skilled like them. They taught you all they had learned and all that had make them so successful and respected and highly miserable, as all the adults seemed to be.

While the little girl was learning how to be highly skilled in all these wonderful activities, she also learned that the secret of happiness was not to be happy, but how to be happy about torturing yourself. She had to come to that conclusion because she was indeed happy when she went to her dance class and tortured herself trying to turn her feet out and to lift her leg all the way above her head, and to climb up on the tips of her toes, which made her toes bleed, but made her teacher happy. So she also learned to be happy that she made her teacher and her parents happy and proud. However, as far as the singing went, she quickly reached the conclusion that her voice was no good for anyone, including herself, because every time she sang, her throat burned like fire.

The little girl loved to read and she particularly felt for the story of the little mermaid. If you remember the story, the little mermaid wanted so hard to hang out with humans and become a human herself, that she went to see a powerful witch who made a deal with her. The witch made her drink a magic potion that gave her human legs, but in payment for her services, she would take her voice and the little mermaid would never be able to sing or talk again. Also (that she discovered later), even though she was able to dance, she would feel terrible pain as if she was walking on needles.

As she grew up, the little girl started to think that, like the little mermaid, she also had made a deal with a powerful witch. Only she could not remember when, how and why. Their stories were so similar. Like the little mermaid,the little girl had lost her voice and every one of her steps felt as if she was walking on needles. Like the little mermaid, all the little girl had wanted was to be loved and to hang out with other humans who loved her too. And like the little mermaid, the little girl had been disappointed, because even when other humans seemed to enjoy hanging with her, she was never good enough for them. Especially when it came to singing. Since that was something that she could not do. Remember, the prince loved the mermaid like a sister but ended up marrying someone else...

To Be Continued...

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