The day has arrived! ‘Time For My Music’ has just opened for membership applications, now you too can join our community of supportive women in music to advance in your career with all the resources, guidance and energy you could wish for.
You can purchase your membership by using either your Debit/Credit card via Stripe or with your PayPal account. Please read the terms and conditions you will find in the joining page, and remember that ‘Time For My Music’ is a community for females only.
We are proud to present ‘Time for My Music’, the result of months of work that started with Cafemnee’s first online workshop and then grew with the community group that evolved from it. Starting next week, you will be able to join this wonderful platform that offers a space for females in music to connect, share, learn and advance themselves.
Some of the benefits you will find in ‘Time For My Music’ are:
Conversation and resources about monthly topics to enhance your abilities.
Recorded Zoom calls with experts to solve your questions and improve your skills.
Forums and galleries to share your journey and receive advise from other members.
Zoom rooms for members to meet, catch up and share.
Mentoring on the use of digital platforms.
A library of information that you can access anytime.
A free-spam, confidential and welcoming platform where your privacy will not be compromised.
Sounds exciting? Do you think this could help boost your music career? Explore the page https://www.successbeyondthescore.com/ and keep an eye in our platforms to book your place as soon as the programme launches!
Besides opening the door for the return of indoor performances, on August 14th the UK government also updated the guidance for the performing arts in England to reflect new Public Health England research into transmission risks from singing, wind and brass performance. The research itself was approved after an intense campaign from the industry, that called for the corroboration through science of the assumption that brass and wind instruments were huge risk factors for the transmission of the COVID-19. Studies found that there is little difference between singing and speaking at the same volume when it comes to aerosol production, and that the ‘droplet effect’ from wind and brass is not as big as originally thought. Experts did agree on risk appearing through accumulation, meaning that a long performance in a poorly ventilated area would likely become a source of infection, but if the appropriate safety measures are ensured, said risk can be minimized.
We welcome these news and hope they give a boost to all our brass and wind interpreters, who have had a very hard time these past months. May we meet on stages again soon!
Betty Garcés says she started to sing when the sadness was too much for her heart to bear in silence.
A star in productions like Carmen, Le nozze di Figaro, Suor Angelica, La forza del destino, Turandot, La Bohème, Così fan tutte and Giulio Cesare, Betty is one of the most important opera singers of her native country, Colombia, and also a prominent soprano in the international scene. She grew surrounded by folkloric music rooted in both African and indigenous traditions, and also listening to salsa, which is a highly popular genre on the Pacific coasts of Colombia. You’d expect, with that background, to meet a cheerful person with an interest on the music she grew up with, but Betty is quite the contrary. Even today, she’s rather shy, maybe introverted, and she finds her words better when singing arias and lullabies.
Neither her quiet personality nor the social barriers that usually appear for black women in music had influence on the faith that her teachers Ivonne Giraldo and Francisco Vergara put in her, once they heard her and recognized the potential she had for opera singing. They introduced her to the genre and advised her to study overseas; Mr. Vergara even sorted the financial part himself so Betty could receive training in Germany. That enthusiasm helped Betty envision herself as a professional singer and eventually took her to where she is today.7
We wanted to share this story because Betty’s life is, in a way, a tale of breaking the shell: of personal struggles and difficulties like melancholy and depression; of the glass ceiling that afflicts the development of people in and out of the arts; of the stereotypes that could have type-casted Betty as only capable to perfom the tropical genres she grew up with. We strive to give to our members the support they need to get wherever they want in their music career because we know there are more women like Betty, who just need someone to see through and believe in order for them to shine.
It has been just a few days since we expressed our disbelief at the delay of the decision by the government to allow indoor performances. We mentioned that the measure would be studied again on August 15th and said that, given the circumstances, we expected nothing much than another delay. To our surprise, the outcome was quite the opposite. Indoor performances are allowed since last Saturday!
It is not as if everything went back to normal. The decision applies to England (Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have other policies, please check them out if you are in their territories) and it excludes nightclubs in general, and areas with local lockdowns in particular. Of course, it is also required that the performances comply with all the guidelines given by the government in regards of safe practices during the COVID-19 pandemic and the appropriate safe social distance.
Please read and understand all the recommendations and regulations so you can safely go back to work as soon as possible. Let’s hope now that the Government and audiences alike help us recover from the harsh hit that this pandemic has been for performing artists. Together, we will overcome this and any other challenge!
Towards the end of July, it was said that indoor performances that could comply with the sanitary requeriments would be allowed to happen again starting August 1st. However, right before the date came, the PM retracted the decision because of a spike in COVID-19 cases and announced the decision would be revised on August 15th.
It is August 12th and the COVID-19 new spike gives no signs of being overcome. On the contrary, we recently got our daily infection rate over 1000, something that didn’t happen since June. We don’t hold a lot of expectations for the government deciding to allow indoor performances starting this upcoming Saturday; the circumstances don’t look too bright. What we expect is that the crisis of the entertainment industry is properly addressed, because hundreds of individuals, groups and institutions dedicated to the arts across the country are on the brink of extinction due to the pandemic cutting their source of income.
We have to stick together and collaborate with each other more than ever. If we all take the appropriate measures and demand the authorities to do their part, we will not have to wait until the vaccine becomes available before going back to the stage.
Being part of the Cafemnee workshopping experience, I feel, has prepared us to return to making music as artists and performing in ways that will to help bring more light and love to our audiences.
One of our members
This post will wrap up on the amazing feedback that we received for the online workshop, our first experience in the digital world that became the seed of our soon to launch permanent community group. In our sessions, we always ask for feedback in a way that doesn’t only allow us to know what we did right and what we can improve, but to our members to reflect on their journey and set new goals that are exciting and achievable at the same time.
These are the first questions that we asked, with some of the answers we received. We hope that reading them will help you envision the kind of work that we do, so eventually you can join us online or when we can hug each other again.
One thing I learnt and will do!
To record myself on video or my phone audio to evaluate and improve my performance.
After the last session I went home and wrote two verses of a new song in 20 mins! This is a first. I learnt that my words come from my heart.
To play more confidently and with emotion when I’m not reading the notes.
One thing I liked about the workshop
I was able to interact with everyone during lock down and get feedback on my performance.
Having a mixed group of singers and musicians meant I learnt from everyone.
If lockdown didn’t happen I would be abroad but it allowed me to join the workshop. The workshop definitely helped me to improve.
Again, thank you to all our members for sticking with us and face the challenge of communication in times of crisis like the one we are currently living. We are going forward and honestly we cannot wait to show you the community we hae been working on to help you reach your goals in music.
As you know, our latest workshop took place online through the span of several weeks, as opposed to our regular face to face one day events. One of the results of the workshop was the community group, which has remained active after the masterclasses were done and has provided a space to our members to communicate and collaborate.
If you are wondering how to have access to this group if you don’t have it, or whether it will continue active, the answers are here. Yes, the group will not only remain active, but expand to become a permanent space for the growth and collaboration of women in music online, and there will be access to new members opening very soon!
In essence, each month there will be one topic we focus on, for example, how to get gigs. Members will receive information about the topic so they can set goals and ways to measure their progress during the month, using the forums and other online tools we have at hand to work together. Twice a month, there will be a Zoom call with Millicent and other experts to answer questions and give advice. This call may include a short presentation on the topic too, so everybody is on the same page, and it will be recorded and hosted for the platform to make it easy for members to rewatch or check later if they cannot attend the call itself.
Besides, in the Community Group members are to share good practise, tips, etc they have come across to support each other, as well as video and music clips on their journey. There will be instructions on how to set up a video or sound channel (YouTube, SoundCloud, etc.) to house recordings to share in the group and/or with prospective clients. And we will also host additional Zoom calls among the members only, so they can all catch up, chat and share during the month.
We are very excited and happy to go ahead with this group that has been so beneficial and enriching in the midst of the pandemic. Do you have some thoughts about it, are you excited too? Let us know through our contact form!
Since the middle of spring, Millicent has been teaching online through the platform Zoom, tailoring the classes to the level and goals of each student with the saxophone. Given that this was a seasonal offer for spring and now that we are way into summer, the booking system will close. Before the slots go for good, though, there is a chance to book your place to start or continue your process with the instrument.
Millicent will receive enquiries until July 31st. Click on the image below to find out more and book your sax lessons.
Great news! Last Friday, 17 July, our Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that indoor live performances should be able to resume in England from Saturday 1 August subject to pilot schemes being successful.
Social distancing, reduced ticketing and venue capacity limitations will be a requirement on all events.