What is Voice Yoga?
Voice Yoga consists of a series of exercises that gives pride of place to the voice as a central, creative force in our lives. Our existence depends in important ways on our speaking, listening and ‘sounding’ abilities. This class promotes awareness of the many roles of the voice in our daily lives. It expands our creative vocabulary, without necessarily talking about music, the singing voice or any musical style. The point is not so much to learn any specific new technique: we play with the voice in a lot of different ways and listen with fresh ears to the hidden potential of our voices.
In Voice Yoga, sound, silence and resonance become a mirror for the self. The sounds produced by ourselves, allow us to ‘see’ ourselves more clearly, to hear what’s living deep inside us. In ever-growing cycles of creating and perceiving we learn about music and sound, about ourselves and about the environment.
Content of the classes
Exercises are based on yoga, musical – and theatrical techniques, vipassana meditation and our innate memories of playing like children – and become like them again. Some parts of the Voice Yoga exercises are comparable to yoga and tai-chi: the effect of the exercises is gradual. We believe that only with repeated classes you can really learn to connect the energies of voice & sound with the whole of your body and mind. You will begin to hear and feel things you did not hear and feel before. That’s why we suggest you to sign up for four classes a time after your trial class.
Your role as participant
It may be better to call the Voice Yoga events ‘sessions’ instead of ‘classes’: you are very much making the event, not so much in imitation of the teacher, but by sharing your own sounds and movements, or just by listening to and observing others. What a session will be like (quiet and reflective, noisy and wild, or both…) is very much determined by who are present. Your experience, whatever it is, is central. There is no predetermined goal. Like in a musical ‘jam session’, the outcome is unpredictable. We have no expectations of each other except allowing that part of you that wants to be heard to come out, and respecting each other’s contributions.
Voice Yoga is designed and taught by Mark van Tongeren, who brings with him 25 years of experience in working with sound, music and theatre in many different cultures.
In my Voice Yoga Review of 2014 you can read about some recent experiences:
For those seeking to enrich their voices, let off steam and unlock their hidden creative potential. For singers and those who are afraid to sing. For actors, musicians and other artists and professionals who work with sound. Perhaps more than anyone else, people who want to experience and learn about the therapeutical effects of sound seem to benefit from Voice Yoga.
Dates and time
Since Summer 2021 weekly classes have gone online or halted altogether. Check back for the restart, possibly in Autumn 2022.