In today’s episode, Tara chats with Anne-Sofie Søby Jensen—a Danish singer. They speak about how Anne-Sofie’s musical trek took her from Denmark to the UK and the journey of really learning to own and love who she is as a singer. Her story may inspire any singer who struggles with comparison and trying to find their own niche in singing.
- Anne-Sofie grew up in a small village in Denmark in a family where piano music was often hear.
- Her parents were both pianist and she took piano lessons first from her grandmother. It set the stage for her music.
- Anne-Sofie also took part in some drama and theater in her teen years. During that time, the had a teacher who encouraged her to study classical music, thinking that her voice was be a perfect fit. This teacher (whom she had at 14) was super supportive of Anne-Sofie’s singing and helped her learn the art of becoming an expressive singer.
- When she met other teens in the classical world of music, her comment was: “I didn’t know that you could be a cool teenager having a normal teenage life and still sing classical.”
In her pre Academy days, she gained a love for oratorio through a workshop put on by an organist and choral conductor. It made her delve into Baroque music more and learn to love it.
She did end up going to the Royal Danish Academy of Music and after some time there, felt stuck. But another teacher—a guest professor—helped her understand her voice better and encouraged her to pursue new things. This was Professor Susan McCulloch from the UK.
So, Anne-Sofie took the leap and moved to the UK in 2017.
Some of the hardships she struggled with as a singer was simply comparing herself to other singers. Once she acknowledged that her voice was not a lyric mezzo but more of a lower mezzo/contralto, she found more joy.
“Finally realizing and honoring that has given me a freedom to sing the repertoire that I feel fits me. And not to feel that I have to press myself into a box that I don’t have to fit in.”
In her freedom, she could do this: “I decide what I want to do. I don’t have to do an audition…”
She also has been influenced by the book “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron.
On singing and performing, she loves this: “It’s the way that we can move other people.”
She also has found so much life in allowing herself to “play”.
“Letting go of everything and getting back that joy and of singing through ‘messing around’. “
Her final advice to singers is this: “Stop comparing yourself to others. Own who you are.”
You can find Anne-Sofie at these places to follow:
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