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Songwriting Workshop With Children's Choir

Back in December I had an exciting chat with the director of the Comox Valley Children's Choir, Sophie Simard, about having me teach a songwriting workshop on a weekend in March. I sent a proposal for her to forward to the choir's board of directors, we met a couple of times and hashed out final details through email and texting. The song would be written for Canada's 150th Birthday and would be submitted to the Lieutenant Governor's Sing Me A Song Contest.

Then my son brought home pink eye. Yeah, no big deal, take some drops we'll all be ok in a couple days. My sons was fine in a couple days. Me? NOPE. The Tuesday before the weekend workshop, I began to feel as though someone had punched me in my left eye. It stung, weeped, and began to swell and look very red. I used cold compresses throughout the night and next day and by Thursday it stopped weeping but was still incredibly swollen and red and sore, and my vision was blurry. The doctor I had seen told me it was acute viral conjunctivitis and there were no drops to help me out; I had to suffer through it and "by the way, it's going to go into your other eye as well". I had been looking forward to this workshop for weeks. There was no way I was going to cancel!

By the time I arrived on Saturday to work with the choir, I looked like a zombie in an apocalypse! The kids were telling me with concern that my eyes were REALLY red. As I struggled to see them properly, we talked about the basics of songwriting, the structure of a song, and how to find your melody and lyrics. Thankful that I had healthy ears and these lovely little creative souls to keep me going throughout the day, we had our song written in 4 hours!

The next day we were to polish the song and record a performance of it. It didn't work out. I won't bore you with those details, but let's just say we didn't think the videoing through. I returned a week later with better equipment and we nailed down the video in one take in the rain!! It sounds soooo beautiful! And if you listen closely, you can also hear music coming from the dance studio next to us! AND I could SEE this time! ;) Without further adieu, I give you: CELEBRATING CANADA by The Comox Valley Children's Choir and PK Tessmann!

Be sure to subscribe to their YouTube channel and follow them on Facebook! I'll be performing with them for their year end concert on May 13th at the Comox Pentecostal Church, so keep your eyes healthy and open for details on that!

See you soon!

~ PK

PS: There is actually treatment for adenoviral conjunctivitis for adults if you see an optometrist in the first day or two of symptoms. It's not needed for children since their young immune systems get them over it quickly and easily. Luckily I found this out for my husband. Betadine rinse worked like a charm!

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