Sing’IN Sing’Out — France


ERASMUS+, Key Action 1: training course

Dates: 15—25 November 2022

Venue: Bédeille, France

National team: Kristýna Štenclová, Zuzana Havlová, Eliška Bílková

Please read the info-pack, project summary and the daily activities schedule.

Hosting organisation: SolAfrika

Project report:

Countryside, community life, interesting activities, useful techniques, self-expression, sustainability, healthy diet and, above all, lots of music, singing and inspiration… These are only a few words to characterize the amazing project Sing’In Sing’Out which took place in a small village called Bédeille in France. With our three-member Czech team, we were truly happy we had chosen this training course. Other participants who quickly became our friends were from Serbia, Macedonia, Estonia, Hungary, and France.

This course could not have taken place without our awesome leaders Maëva, Yann, Clémentine and Louis, members of the society Sol Afrika. Thanks to their efficient organization of our daily communal life and fun welcoming activities, we were able to create a great group of people who were not afraid to be themselves and to open up. The project theme was: “Singing methods as a tool of expression of ourselves”, and the program was divided in two parts: singing and song writing.

The singing part included workshops related to singing techniques and warm-up, preparation of our body before singing, improvisation and choir singing. These activities were led by two kind and very talented singers, Samëli and Sophie Le Morzadec. We usually initiated our day with trust building activities (e. g. trust fall) which could be used with any kind of target group when getting to know each other. Warm-up and body preparation covered techniques indispensable for singing or any other public performance. We began improvised singing step by step, from very short simple melodies in English to longer songs in invented language. Thanks to Samëli and Sophie, we learned to “lâcher prise”, to let go, be in the moment and just sing as if no one was watching. Various techniques and activities we learned could be used not only during the music classes but also in any context when youth or kids need to gain self-confidence when expressing themselves.

After a few days of singing workshops, we felt more confident and prepared for the second part – writing. Together with slam poetry expert Slamézik, we started with games related to finding rhymes and continued with writing poems in English and in our mother tongue. Once we had our poems or songs prepared, a true slam poetry show with stage, microphone and audience could begin. At this moment, each of us showed a bit of their soul, feelings or thoughts. Later, we also tried to sing our created text, using any improvised melody that came to mind at that moment, with or without a chosen rhythmical background. I believe that these workshops would allow any group of children or youth to create something new without any previous experience, to share with others a little bit of themselves and to express it the way they feel it.

We had a chance to show the outcome of our work to locals. Within an intercultural buffet where we also brought a bit of Czech sweets and drinks, we sang a few simple songs together. We continued our performance on stage, during the Sophie’s concert, where we sang a song version of the poem “On the Grasshopper and Cricket” from John Keats. We truly enjoyed this last time singing all together and sharing our energy and enthusiasm with others.

I believe we all felt enriched and very inspired by this course. Saying goodbye to our new European friends was not easy and we hope we will be able to see them and sing together again.

We would like to thank everyone who contributed to making this project happen and we are excited to share this new inspiration not only with the youth and kids we work with but also with our colleagues, friends, family and from time to time, ourselves.

Zuzana Havlová

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