Sunday, 11 March 2018


I Wish I Was a Chorister

There was a solemn choral evening at my high school chapel, a memorial for
an elderly statesman, a student of my high school who had passed at ninety-four
years of age. There were four choirs present, but the one that had an impact
on me was the high school choir.

Forty years ago I auditioned to be a member of the some protestant choir, but my
voice could not take me there. I was stuck in this place where I could not be moved.
My friends made it, they slid through. There I was standing, embarrassed and helpless.
I could not re-audition and claim my voice was much better and that the panel needed
to revise their decision.

This is how it must have felt for those that had not passed the American Idol auditions.
Maybe I could have tried again in the next year, but I didn’t. Yesterday I watched and
heard  the teenagers pipe away. Their actions and clapping matched parts of the song.
I thought if only I had been a chorister, I would have been just like them.

At school in the 1980s, I pushed myself during Sunday services to sing as sweetly as I
could, as if to prove that I had a beautiful voice after all. I wish I could have told one of
the young ones how lucky they were to be up there on the stage and that after forty years
I am still affected by the memory.


  1. The idea of reflecting through the performance on your own impact is interesting. Like you, I wish I'd tried for choir. It's a bummer that at times kids don't really realize how lucky they are.

  2. Interesting how the performance triggered memories and reflection. I am sure you have a sweet voice, We all do. Just choir singing and Idol might be not part of our world. Choir singing is powerful.

  3. Our highest highs and lowest lows seem to make deeper, more lasting memories. Have you thought about joining a choir now, or taking voice lessons? Both might bring closure to this memory.

  4. In truth, the voice only matters when the singing is for an audience. Go ahead and sing for yourself...the uplifting feeling is the same!

  5. The line about American Idol made me laugh - from the sweet serenity of a Sunday service to the absurdity of the reality show auditions, it lightened the mood and helped me to see the way you navigate between the perspective of your younger self and that of you now. Way to go!