The practice and politics of the unfettered female voice–reclaiming your power through voice, song, and opera-inspired exercises.
For centuries, opera has used women’s voices to convey male stories. Within an art form dominated by men, the female voice is a means to an end: controlled, denatured, and crafted to carry words and intentions that belie the true depth and complexity of the female experience.
Here, author and opera singer Fides Krucker shows readers what it means to find–and use–our authentic voice, to sing wildly and uninhibited from the depths of our bodies and spirits. Part memoir, part radical vocal guide, and part feminist call to action, Reclaiming Calliope offers an intriguing look at the rarified world of opera, with fascinating behind-the-scenes details to which outsiders don’t typically have access. Through incisive critique, personal stories, and intriguing exposé, Krucker razes the male gaze that packaged characters like Carmen, Tosca, and La traviata’s Violetta for viewer consumption–and radically envisions an empowered, new way of finding and fueling the authentic female voice.
Through a series of breathing and vocal prompts that anyone–not just singers–can do, Krucker helps readers reconnect to their authentic primal voices: she takes the reader inside her vocal studio to learn new methods of breath, voicework, and embodiment to uncover and access personal and social truths. Each chapter includes a theme-related exercise–an act of expression, release, self-discovery, or resistance–that guides readers to develop voices unbound from anyone else’s storytelling, boldly and without apology.