Annual Singing Retreat

Annual Singing Retreat

6th Foundational Singing Training

6th Foundational Singing Training

Monday, December 21, 2015

Winter 2016 California Calendar

Feb. 4-5  Lessons in Woodside- still available

Feb. 5-6 Introduction to Uncovering the Voice at 

San Francisco Waldorf School- open to all

Feb. 7  Choir Day at Marin Waldorf School -open to all


Feb. 8-9 Lessons in Fairfax- booked


Feb. 10 Lessons at Ananda, Nevada City- booked


Feb. 12-14  Foundational Singing Training at Ananda, Nevada City- still accepting new applicants


Feb. 16   Community Singing Evening at Live Oak Waldorf School, Meadow Vista -open to all

Feb. 16-17  Lessons in Loomis- booked

Feb. 18-20  Pedagogical Training- for UTV graduates only


Feb. 21 Lessons in Auburn- booked



Testimonials

Thanks for an amazing Singing Retreat! I didn't know what to expect...after all the work I've done on myself, I was surprised that this singing showed me some structures inside myself I hadn't known were there. I'm getting glimpses of the 'me' I am underneath all the cultural overlayment and I am thrilled to be finally able to access this territory!   -Lissa C.


The Singing Retreat has been for me a kind of soul-oasis, a place where my spirit drank from waters that fed me more deeply than I realize even now. I have been drenched in pure tone and crisp, precise consonants as well as rich and wide vowels.
The spatial dynamics and eurythmy enriched my sense of belonging, both in my physical body and my place in the group, and were a perfect counterpoint to the exercises and singing.
To listen to my own voice resonating in clear tones, and at the same time to the voices of those around me, connected me simultaneously to my inner depths and to the depths we all share... This could be called “the voice of Heaven’.   And I am ready to get drenched again!  -Pamela B.

Christiaan's Open Singing Course is a revolution in the teaching of singing.  These technical exercises gently guide beginning and experienced singers into vocal freedom.  It is an often-emotional experience that leads you back to the joy of singing.
-Dr. Lynne Morrow, Sonoma State University

Christiaan Boele's lectures are a work of art in themselves, unwinding harmoniously, rhythmically and melodically.  
 -Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training

The experience of the Open Singing Course cannot be captured in words.  Moving, replenishing, spiritual, inspiring and lovely are some words that come to mind.  Christiaan is a gentle, masterful teacher who has crafted a training as relevant for experienced singers as for beginners and self-proclaimed nonsingers.  -Dana R.

The quality of your work with us magnifies with every session.  For me, your gift of an elevated understanding of the voice has improved and rejuvenated my work with children and adults alike.  Thank you.  My own voice has been enlivened and is more flexible and pleasurable as well.  -Rusty V.

Christiaan, thank you for sharing this gift of singing with such joy, such humor and such diligence.  I had a great time at the Open Singing Course and I wasn't stressed at all.  (I am very anxious about singing and I almost didn't come.)  -Windsong B.

During my Waldorf teacher training Christiaan taught us Werbeck singing exercises. In the beginning I merely enjoyed doing the exercises. It was an interesting and new approach to singing which made me forget my doubts about not having a beautiful voice. The exercises felt doable. During the years, however, I could experience the transformational power of the exercises. Not only did they make me calmer and more centered, they also helped me to access my creative potential. The exercises felt like a protective blanket wrapped around my body. I also use the exercises to prepare myself before teaching. My voice has improved which inspired me to incorporate more songs into my lessons.-Tosha W.

Thank you!  I have studied singing for many years and appreciate the gentle, soothing, relaxing approach.  Reminded me of  yoga and of labor-opening.  -Beth G.

Just amazing!  Really connected me to my voice in a new, spiritual way.  -Ken S.

Meeting with the School of Uncovering the Voice has brought me closer to a wholesome singing practice and has provided me with a solid anchor on my vocal explorations, a safe and nurturing place for healing the voice and for growing more intimately familiar with it.  In the few years passing since this schooling first reached me, new knowledge has been constantly flowing into my listening and singing, deepening my awareness to space as the habitation of the voice and to the voice's place within it. The Singing Training will allow these understandings to further mature and will serve to continue the cultivation of presence, sensitivity and elasticity that allow the voice to shine through the body.  With the help of this sharpened presence, I hope to be able not only to meet the world with my own stronger, more centered voice, but also to impart this knowledge to others who may benefit from it.  -David K.

This course is very illuminating to me and supports many of my own discoveries during my forty years of teaching guitar.  It has cured my "hopeless" attitude about singing!  -Nan S.

Christiaan, you are a delightfully clear and holistic teacher.   What a joy you are!  -Ann O.

I have appreciated the opportunity to be in the Open Singing Course for these few days.  The spiritual understanding of the human being sets these singing exercises apart from other 'warm up exercises' that are even similar in some ways in other schools of singing.  it is this subtle yet huge difference that gives the therapeutic element an extra dimension that goes so much deeper than most approaches to the human voice.  If one is willing to do the work, these exercises can have a marvelous effect in opening the voice.  In essence, it is the spiritual understanding of the singing process and particularly the larynx which contributes to the uniqueness of this work.  -Joy S.

Wonderful course with depth, feeling and sharing of such knowledge!  -Julie M.


I loved it!  Moved to tears!  Affirmation of my inner needs.  I'm longing for the wholeness.  Want more!   -Jen A.

The small bit of Werbeck singing I have been introduced to has been restorative, energizing and healing and has helped bring practical experience and application to many of the spiritual concepts we study in my studio.  I personally have been through a long journey of vocal issues while being a lifelong performer and music minister.  Werbeck's work has helped me to recover my voice time and time again and continues to assist me in re-training old patterns of strain that I developed in early, less enlightened vocal study.  There is nothing I'd rather do than learn more about this incredible co-creative art in which we have the blessed opportunity to allow living sound presence to take form in the world.  -Kath R.

Thank you for all the sensitivity and strength you bring to the world cloaked in wonder, beauty and love.  Your way in the world brings hope and healing.  -Katherine P. 

Wonderful!  I love the mix of information and exercises!  -Noelle T.

How does one speak of "The School of Uncovering the Voice" without sounding too mythical, opening oneself to suspicion, for this is not an easy thing to speak about.  When I first came to the Open Course, I was told the work would "Meet Me Where I Was."  I silently wondered what that could possibly mean?  I grew up with an Amish grandmother, cousins, aunties, uncles and relatives, who all believed in the power of song.  I did not know this then, I only felt it.  We sang for every occasion; for work, for birth, for death, in four part harmony, without instrumentation.  My first understanding of something sacred came from song.  Perhaps the definition of Christiaan's work I might give is that one will discover that which is sacred in oneself again.  There are things buried in the heart that perhaps only music can stir up again.  -Beth N.

Wow Christiaan, what a gift you have given us.  A new impulse for our time and FUN too!  You have helped me change my life.  -Doug C.

The workshop and private lessons with Christiaan have brought me a deep joy and an awakening that I have been longing for.  I am very moved by the process of genuinely connecting with the power of the voice and the breath; of experiencing the wisdom and effectiveness of not pushing and not trying so hard... My voice transformed within a week and I already feel more connected with it.  Voice exercises from previous teachers used to bore me, but now I actually feel delighted to practice the exercises I learned with Christiaan... I experience these voice exercises as I would a meditation practice.  They bring mindfulness, focus and calm to my busy life.. bringing true healing and peace. -Lena P.

-->
Connection, like the ripples when you toss the smooth stone into the water;  connection to the lion’s wild mane.  Thank you for these lively, living, working moments Christiaan. Joyous,grateful work! 
-Beverly K.

-->
This day helped me gain entrance to a spacious sense of true engagement with my voice that I’ve not experienced before, with a sense that this resistance I’ve had can give way to more openness and participation. - Lily N.

Passage
I no longer linger in the shadows of silencing fear and doubt -
The sun beckons me now, waiting - endlessly, effortlessly
Sounds fly from my throat and heart like doves and swallows
With clear tones sweetly ringing- deftly, solidly, free
Led by the infinite air streaming - everywhere, always
Needing only to slow my furious pace
and quiet my restless mind,
I open to the sounds of grace Divine
And am enveloped by a harmony of song
more beautiful than even dreams' vast skies.
-Pamela B. 
The 6th Foundational Singing Training in California
New Students are Still Eligible to Enroll through June 2016
Session Two: February 12-14, 2016
at Ananda Meditation Center, Nevada City, CA

The 6th Training meets over a 3 1/2 year period, for 5 days each June and 3 days each February. It includes four private lessons per year, group work and choir.

This advanced course is offered to those with previous study of Uncovering the Voice (such as attendance at an Open Course and/or private lessons with Christiaan). 

In this work, the process of singing is viewed holistically, with the aim of the natural opening and balancing of the voice.  The singer is invited to move with confidence and joy towards discovering his or her own voice within the group and in private lessons.  It is a gentle process and the voice is never pushed, but gently liberated through engagement and active participation.  A wide range of specific singing exercises will be developed together with a comprehensive study of Werbeck's book.

Singing Training Topics:

Session 1:  Exercises to Forget the Breathing    June 11-15, 2015
Session 2:  Directing the Sound                        February 12-14, 2016
Session 3:  Vowels and Consonants                  June 9-13, 2016
Session 4:  Expansion of the Sound                  February 2017
Session 5:  Reflection of the Sound                  June 2017
Session 6:  Reflection of the Word                   February 2018
Session 7:  Summary and Closing                    June 2018

Annual Tuition:
$800 for June
$400 for February
(this includes two private lessons in June and two private lessons in February)

To Apply:

Please write a paragraph about why you would like to participate in the Training and email it to Sheryl at: healing.round@gmail.com.  Upon acceptance into the Training, you will receive registration information.

Maximum Enrollment:  30 Students

Open Singing Retreat 2016

Why attend the Open Singing Retreat?

In various areas of our lives, many of us are now looking for healthier and more holistic approaches and we are feeling a new sense of responsibility for realms such as nature, food, clean air, clean water, etc.  Until recently, people have taken both their speaking as well as their singing voices for granted, as if they come for free and do not require any nurturing.  The renewing thought which the School of Uncovering the Voice brings is that we need to take care of our voices in different ways than was done in earlier days.  

How can we develop our precious, own instruments according to the needs of our times?  In earlier eras of humanity, the singing voice was a central issue in life.  Now our capacity is shrinking rapidly.  We need caring ways of expressing ourselves through our voices and to realize: Through my voice, I express my whole being and by singing, I affect my overall balance and health.  This can be done by the exercises given by Valborg Werbeck Svardstrom, who shows us easy ways to build up relation to all the basic elements needed for singing and care of the voice.   

In a joyful way, we try to experience the musical world as well as to understand the background of our doing; embracing both practicality and understanding.  Werbeck states that if there would be more singing and more righteous singing in our world, the criminality would decrease.  This thought can be understood as follows: Being with our voice connects us to more pure parts of ourselves and develops that what we may as human beings want to become (our more realized selves).  

The Open Singing Retreat provides a safe, welcoming and deeply renewing space in time to do all of this and more.  It is not only for trained singers, but it is also for people who do not yet have faith in their own capacity as singers and who are open to trying new experiences.



Open Singing Retreat
led by Christiaan Boele 
June 17-19, 2016
at Davis Waldorf School
3100 Sycamore Lane, Davis, CA 95616

Friday June 17
8:50 Check In
9:00  Welcome Circle and Introduction to the School of Uncovering the Voice
10:15   Morning Break 
10:45  Exercises to Forget the Breathing
12:00  Afternoon Break
2:00-3:00 Movement:  Eurythmy
3:15 Transition to Song  
5:00  Evening Break
6:30-8:30  Joyful Exercises and Choir

Saturday June 18
9:00  Building Our Sound Cupola
10:15  Morning Break
10:45  Bringing in the Vowels
12:00  Afternoon Break
2:00-3:00 Movement:  Eurythmy
3:15-4:00 Conversation & Questions
4:15-5:00 Children's Choir
5:00  Evening Break
6:30-8:30  Joyful Exercises and Choir

Sunday June 21
9:00  Deepening our Understanding of Singing
10:15  Morning Break
10:45-12:00 Conclusion & Closing Circle

Tuition:  $250 by May 1, 2016,  $300 therafter

Eurythmy:   Movements and gestures that reveal to the eye what language and music bring to the ear.  Speak and sing with the human body, making speech and music visible.

Children's Choir:  For children and teens ages nine and up.  Free to children of retreat participants and also open to the community ($15 per child & one parent may attend free).  Grownups are invited to join also! 

Special Discounts:
School Group  If three or more staff members from a school or a choir attend, each participant receives $50 off of their tuition.  
Past Open Singing Course Participants:  that register with a guest new to the Open Course, will receive $50 off of their tuition.
     
For more information and to register contact Sheryl at: healing.round@gmail.com or call:  530-210-3208

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Summer 2016 California Tentative Schedule

May 31-June 1   Sebastopol Lessons  

June 2-4  Woodside Lessons 

June 5-6 Loomis Lessons

June 7-8 Lessons at Ananda

June 9-13 Foundational Training at Ananda in Nevada City  

June 14-16  Pedagogical Training at Live Oak Waldorf School  

June 17-19  Annual Open Course, Davis Waldorf School

June 20-24 Marin Lessons

June 26  Choir Day in Marin  

June 27-July 1 Marin Lessons

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Singing Lessons with Sheryl

Sheryl is offering singing lessons!
Lessons cost $50 per hour session.
Contact:  healing.round@gmail.com to schedule.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Article written for Waldorf Today, March 2015



What is ‘The School of Uncovering the Voice’?   The simple answer:  It was founded in 1924 by the Swedish singer, Mrs. Valborg Werbeck Svardstrom in collaboration with Rudolf Steiner.   Mrs. Werbeck wrote her experiences and spiritual understanding of the human voice in her book, “Uncovering the Voice, The Cleansing Power of Song”.  She composed hundreds of singing exercises which were carried to the next generation by J├╝rgen Schriefer.  It is a holistic approach to singing that is in the early stages of being known in our time and Werbeck’s singing exercises are taught in some Waldorf teacher trainings.

As administrator of The School of Uncovering the Voice in California, I am often asked to share my own personal experience of Werbeck Singing.  In the words of Christiaan Boele, (who has devoted over thirty-five years of his life to teaching Werbeck singing around the globe); “This work meets people where they are at.”  

 Every human’s voice and life story is as unique as their fingerprints.  It is my hope that by reading the narrative of one person’s journey with Werbeck singing, some of you might become inspired to explore the possibilities for yourself.  And so I offer you a glimpse into my involvement with this work as I have gone through the process, from novice to teacher.

In 2001, I spent time with my friend at the American Eurythmy School in Weed, CA.  I asked her, “Is there a spiritual approach that utilizes the voice in such a way as Eurythmy does with movement?”  Her answer was, yes in fact there was, and I was invited to a weekend singing course with a visiting teacher, Christiaan Boele. 

 So, in a pre-cell phone era, on a Friday evening, I embarked alone for a long drive from the Humboldt coast (where I was a student teacher), through the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, eager to attend my first anthroposophical singing class. As my old Buick turned the blind corner of a windy road on the edge of a dark mountain, it violently collided into a huge boulder, surrounded by rubble from a fresh rockslide.  The tire and its rim were instantly wrecked, yet somehow I was able to propel the car forward and safely off of the pavement; thudding tragically down a dirt road that appeared out of nowhere in the wilderness, bouncing to a dusty halt in front of one lone house.  There I met amazing, angel-helper- humans who were able to jerry-rig the Buick’s spare donut tire onto my car and send me on my way for the remaining two hour drive to Mt. Shasta.

After almost not making it there at all, the next morning I attended my first Uncovering the Voice workshop. My perception of what it means to emanate song as a human being; of the potential of creating music with a group of other humans; and even my understanding of the very nature of sound in our world- all was unequivocally changed.  We entered into the realm of pure cosmic tones and were led there through a process that contained holiness, sensibility and humor.  It was indeed a spiritual awakening, yet simultaneously compounded with a deep yearning and sadness.  The weekend course seemed as a moment ‘out of time’; an experience that couldn’t possibly be re-created in the everyday world.  I felt privy to a mystery school; as if I had been invited to share in a rare teaching that was only known among the Eurythmists and other esoteric-type folks. 

The magical weekend ended and I returned to ‘the real world’.  I managed to get on Christiaan Boele’s email list and periodically received invitations for lessons and courses that were offered in CA each Feb. and June.  At that time, the 2nd Foundational Singing Training was beginning but life circumstances prevented me from signing up. There was also a Therapeutic Werbeck Singing Training being offered in the US by another teacher, but I was advised to master the foundational understanding of Uncovering the Voice before learning the therapeutic applications.   Over the next seven years, I attended the Open Course (now called the Annual Singing Retreat), had private singing lessons and went to Werbeck singing workshops at Waldorf conferences.  I wrote down every Werbeck singing exercise that I learned and kept them alive by sharing them with my Waldorf students and colleagues. 

 In 2008, at long last, I enrolled in the 4th Foundational Singing Training and my in-depth study of Uncovering the Voice truly began.  What had once seemed to me as a rare and obscure singing occurrence became familiar and attainable.  With the masterful guidance of Christiaan Boele’s instruction, I gained a spiritual understanding of the process of singing and the Werbeck exercises worked their magic of opening, clearing, balancing and strengthening my instrument.  After completion of the 3 ½ year Foundational Training, I enrolled in the Pedagogical Training and learned how to become a teacher of Uncovering the Voice.  In 2013, after demonstrating my teaching abilities, I earned my teacher certification in Uncovering the Voice, and I am now bringing the work further into the world in my own unique way.  Singing is a lifetime of endless growth and possibilities and I continue to take lessons and advanced graduate courses with Mr. Boele.

For the past seven years I have served in an administrative capacity for The School of Uncovering the Voice and have thus witnessed the transformational process that people have undergone as they’ve immersed themselves in Werbeck Singing.  I have seen advanced, classically-trained, professional singers burst into heart-wrenching tears, wishing that they had found this singing school decades earlier; feeling that at last they were singing in their own authentic voice.  I have also seen people with severely compromised singing abilities undergo a healing process; they are uplifted with confidence, joy and knowledge that they are able to discover their vibrant and beautiful singing voices.  In these courses, all levels of singers become as equals, learning and transforming together.  This process will meet you where you are at.

The School of Uncovering the Voice is a flame of hope for the potential of our relationship to our individual voices, to each other as we unite in song and in our connection to the song of life itself.  With each person that embodies this work, it continues to evolve in creative and artistic applications.  In the United States, there are now approximately one hundred graduates of the Foundational Singing Trainings and there are a small handful of people who have earned teaching certificates from Christiaan Boele. A new Pedagogical Training has just begun and hopefully more teachers will be emerging in the coming years. The 6th Foundational Singing Training in CA will begin this June. 

May the work of Valborg Werbeck Svardstrom continue to blossom in our communities and shine into future generations.  May all people be able to sing with well-being, liberation and beauty.

Blessings,
Sheryl Adler-Eldridge

If you are inspired to better understand and develop your voice and undergo this inherently healing and artistic process:
Visit our website:  www.werbecksinging.com and email Sheryl for more information:  healing.round@gmail.com

- Attend the Annual Singing Retreat for a thorough introduction to Uncovering the Voice.

- Join the 6th Foundational Singing Training in CA.  This is the in-depth Training of Werbeck’s work and is in conjunction with private singing lessons. 

- After completion of the Foundational Singing Training, graduates are eligible to enroll in the Pedagogical Training and also advanced classes.