Helping Talent Bloom

Adam Taggart
By Adam Taggart on Tue, May 24, 2016 - 8:01pm

I had a "feel good" experience today that I think is worth sharing. I'm posting it in this 'Community Building' group, as it does involve building Social Capital/Community, but mostly I'm just happy to have been part of this little story.

Lucy (not her actual name) is a student in my 9 year-old daughter's 4th grade class.

She's always had a different teacher than my daughter before this year, so I haven't known her that well before now. But each year at the school concerts -- you know, those ones where the whole class is trotted out to sing holiday carols? -- she catches my ear.

I went to high school with a few folks who eventually became really successful singers (for example, my good buddy Pete is currently playing Jean Valjean in Les Mis in London), so I have some experience with what a kid with a naturally talented voice sounds like.

Lucy struck me as likely having that gift. Even surrounded by 40 other enthusasticly-hollering elementary schoolers, every so often I'd catch a clear-sounding strain from her that stood out from the rest.

Anyways, a few weeks back, I chaperoned a field trip for the 4th graders and was able to spend some time getting to know Lucy. She's super-cute, bubbly and can hold a surprisingly mature conversation with an adult. I asked her about her singing, and as expected, she told me about the love for music she's always had, and how singing is a joy for her. She's completely self-taught; no singing lessons or mentoring so far -- just raw natural passion.

But then she floored me by telling me about a neurological condition she's developed. To protect her identity, I won't get specific; but it's heartbreaking to hear of such a vivacious, good-hearted kid having to deal with such a burden. I was so impressed with her willingness to freely raise what must be a very scary thing for her, and with the comfort and acceptance she displayed when describing a clearly difficult condition to live with.

I thought a lot about her courage and character in days following the trip. A kid like that, you wish good things for.

So the idea eventually hit me to gift her a singing lesson with a talented music teacher I know. The hope was to let her take her voice out for a test drive with a safe, experienced mentor -- to let her discover what she's capable of, and if nothing else, to spend an hour doing what she loves.

I heard this morning that she just had the lesson last night. From all accounts, it went great. I'm really hoping she's able to continue taking lessons. To work on developing her gift. To find a therapeutic outlet in the midst of her health treatments. And just to enjoy the discovery process of life the way every 9 year-old should.

In closing, here's a short audio clip from the lesson that her mom sent me. Just Lucy, with no prior vocal training, setting that voice free:

3 Comments

Thrivalista's picture
Thrivalista
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 5 2011
Posts: 60
Lucy's voice

Thank you, Adam. She does have a wonderful voice.  I hope you get your wish for her to continue developing her talent, and that she's able to overcome whatever difficulty it is she's facing.

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 7 2007
Posts: 5570
Wow!

What a voice on that girl!  No wonder she stood out for you, I got chills listening to that.

Adam, that's a great story and a solid testament for why I am thrilled to be able work with you here at Peak Prosperity.  Working with good people who you admire is a real gift in life (but should be a basic birthright, if we were doing things well.  :))

I'm hoping for an update at some point, to hear how her singing career is moving along..

Michael_Rudmin's picture
Michael_Rudmin
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 25 2014
Posts: 772
Nice story, thanks

But I wonder... it wasn't the voice that struck me, though it was very good... so much as the sense of rhythm and note control. (Maybe that's what you mean by voice?)

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