I’ve been thinking a lot about time passing recently. Part of the nature of my job is that I’m constantly flitting between different timescales – one minute I’m working on events over a year in advance, the next I’m planning how to tackle a song I’m teaching this week. Having to swap between thinking about small timescales and large ones can be disorientating sometimes, and it can take a short while for my head to refocus. It can also make it hard to be truly “in the moment”, as even when I’m in the middle of a session working on a song, part of me is thinking about how the shape the song next time we sing it, how it will work in different performance spaces, and whether we can bring it back for a big concert in six months or even a year. I’ve been feeling the need recently to find a way to park some of the bigger “planning” thoughts whilst I’m doing immediate things, so that I can truly enjoy every second of what I’m doing. It’s important to be truly in the “now”, I think, and I’m going to focus on that in the coming weeks.
Maybe some of this introspection is related to anniversaries. The idea of forming BeVox came to me on a long car journey in June 2010. That makes this summer our 5th anniversary. As most fledgling businesses do, I made a business plan, which included 5-year projections for where we would be in 2015. Re-reading that plan now, some of it is hopelessly naive, and some we have failed to deliver on pretty spectacularly (the business plan had us running eight groups, two a night, with 480 singers by now!). What’s really interesting is seeing how the focus of the business has changed over that time, and whathas stayedthe same – all of which has been led by suggestions and comments from our singers.
Of course, the other anniversary that’s on my mind is my birthday. I turn 40 today – traditionally an age at which people reflect on the past and think of the future. In some ways, turning 40 feels odd – I remember my Mum turning 40, and it feels very strange to be hitting the same milestone. In other ways, it’s just another day – I’ll be starting the day with a Workplace Choir session, then recording backing tracks all afternoon before heading out for a BeVox session in the evening. I am celebrating at the weekend though – privately with Toni on Friday, then a family party on Saturday. It’s the first time in decades that I’ve celebrated a birthday with a family party, and it will be great to be surrounded by them this weekend.
So, nothing particularly musical in this post, but just some musings. One thing is for sure though – I would never have dreamed I would be where I am today, even just five years ago, and I’m incredibly grateful for the shape my life has taken. I’m glad to share it with so many lovely people.