Apprenticeship

Would you like to Apprentice in Vocal Tai Chi, expand your own vocal practice and offer Vocal Tai Chi to others on receipt of a certificate of completion?

Applications are now open. We start April 2023, North London, UK.

Next Zoom Cafe Q and A Session, meet Jenni and discuss the work in a group call with her in person. Email apprenticevtc@gmail.com for the next upcoming zoom date.

Applications are now OPEN

A Voice Life Practice For the Whole Self


Through its ancient wisdom and knowledge of the body and mind; breathing, moving, and staying in balance, Tai Chi offers a perfect grounding form for working with your voiceVocal Tai Chi safely invites and honours the imperfections of being human, including unknown daemons, respectfully and honestly engaging with them. Then, incapacitated grief may rise as vibrant keening. Stuck anger trumpet belly sounds of rage and courage. A quivering, distressed voice, for example, once encountered also spontaneously draws out self-awareness, and perhaps love, to meet with this pain. As the pain hears her own voice, in unplanned trills, shakes, glissandi, and new melodic narratives, compassion gently awakens and soft pulsations of gratitude (for the integrity that the voice itself is revealing) may also stir. “

Jenni Roditi – extract from forthcoming (November 2023) Routledge publication “A Companion to Women’s Musical Leadership – From the Nineteenth Century and Beyond”, Edited by Prof. Helen Julia Minors and Laura Hamer. Jenni’s contributory chapter is titled: “Beyond Music Workshops – A Composer and a Community.”

If you would like to read the full chapter in its pre-published form, prior to submitting your application, please contact Jenni who will email you a Drop Box PDF link of the final draft text.

Module 1

Those who are accepted will be met and received, as you are, where you find yourself, today. Please read the Home page for a short background description of the work.

The six VTC spaces

  1. VTC music – drones, tones and microphones, the vocal house, micro-forms, improvisation.
  2. VTC felt sense – Tai Chi, body work, inner hearing.
  3. VTC therapeutic – working with affect, uncovering hidden voices, triggers, blocks, catharsis
  4. VTC leadership – finding your own inner leader, observing Jenni as a leader
  5. VTC collaborative – partnering with each other for reflective and creative development
  6. VTC meditative – coming into presence, letting go

We do the work as a whole, and moving between these different spaces is a central part of the scope of the work. In the moving between, new potentials are often uncovered. In the foundation module we will touch into all six spaces and you will be encouraged to recognise in yourself how each one plays into your strengths and experience and how you can draw VTC into your own journey, practice and accomplishments.

Module 2

As we move into the second stage we will go into more details in these six areas, while continuing to work with all five as a whole as well.

  1. VTC music:  ‘Your music can never be more or less than you as a human being’ – Nadia Boulanger to Quincy Jones in 1954. Where is your music coming from?
  2. VTC felt sense: Tai Chi is an example of an ancient body-mind practice of perfect balance. As such it is embodied, intuitive and in harmony. Even as a beginner Tai Chi offers a way to ground the body and begin to grow from the roots. Tai Chi acts as an inner ‘home space’ from which to travel with the voice, body, music and theatre. Developing processes that encourage the felt-sense include free-form body work and internal hearing reflected as vocal sound.
  3. VTC therapeutic: Listening to people speak and sound, under their words and their ‘presenting voice’, reading timbres, how to see the signs, intervene, demonstrate, inspire, wait, contain, invite self-reflection and insight.
  4. VTC leadership:   Drawing out the session from the group, while not being afraid of your own impulses to lead, guide, include, tolerate, respond, suggest, provoke, follow. Different formats for the work.
  5. VTC collaborative:  Give and take, when to do nothing, do something, work together, co-creators, groups, choirs, conduction.
  6. VTC meditative: contemplative voice, heart-brain-voice coherence, mantra, drone.

Module 3

Collating and presenting your practice. Between modules 2 and 3 you need to work with 3 practice clients in your own time exploring the work. You then bring one of these clients to the 3rd module for a practice session in front of the group. We create practice groups where you lead the workshop, with supervision.

  1. One to one
  2. Group
  3. Performance
  4. Collaboration
  5. Working towards including VTC in your own accumulating practice method.  
  6. Feedback to build the process for next time 

A Listening Stillness

Listening is becoming a lost art, but it is vital to nurture this part of human life. VTC invites a listening stillness from which a full spectrum of expressive voices can spring. Freeing the voice safely through VTC opens a channel between awareness, emotion and sound. A participant may sense pain, but in voicing it, the pain is heard. This gives shape to the unformed, as emotional honesty. ‘Was that really my voice?’ is a common refrain as the singer hears themselves, as if for the first time.” Jenni Roditi, August 2022.

Becoming a Vocal Tai Chi Artist-Leader

If you have attended regularly, participated fully, and can demonstrate your own Vocal Tai Chi in a comprehensive manner, then you can expect to be approved and get a VTC Artist Leader certificate. You may then run your own sessions and use the title Vocal Tai Chi in your practice. See below in section ‘post-apprenticeship’ for information on membership to the Vocal Tai Chi practitioner network.

Team members

Jenni will invite in musicians and others from time to time to support the practical work.

Timescale


Please note the start date for the work has been brought forward from Feb 2024 to March 2023.

Those who submit an application will then be able to access the forthcoming chapter by Jenni which will be appearing in “The Routledge Companion to Women in Musical Leadership – from the Nineteenth Century and Beyond” due out in November 2023. Jenni’s chapter is to be titled “Beyond Music Workshops – A Composer and A Community.”

This chapter goes into detail about Vocal Tai Chi and related practices, and will act as a reference document in establishing the apprenticeship. Those who apply will be able to read the chapter prior to its publication at the end of 2023.

Please email apprenticevtc@gmail.com to go on the interested list.

Financial Support

There will be financial support offered for cases of special need, thanks to a generous donation from close supporters. Receiving financial support will be available based on need and strength of application combined, and decided on a case by case basis.

There will be two options to apply for in terms of requesting support.

  1. There will be one full scholarship available to enable one person to attend fully supported, all costs covered, if that is demonstrated to be essential.

2. The second option is that there will be a few part grants available where you will only pay two thirds of the fee and support will be given for the third module i.e. £750, if you cannot meet the full amount.

This assistance is only for people who can demonstrate financial need, outlining their situation simply in the application, and who also have strong suitability and commitment to the work. Self-funded applications without financial assistance will be in the mix of applications.

Payment

Full payment to be made in advance. Deadline for payment is March 3rd 2023, 4 weeks before the first session. Payment per module is not an option as it is too time consuming to keep track of all the different arrangements that would then be struck up.

Commitment

You have to be clear that you want go for it and get to the end of the journey. Don’t apply if you want to have an intensive workshop for yourself. That can be arranged separately and is a totally different approach from what will be offered. This is a process in which, while working on your own voice and discovering other peoples voices, you will be in a process of learning leadership skills.

Everything that you do as a practitioner will be regarded as material for learning and building up conscious and intuitive skills as a Vocal Tai Chi Artist Leader.

If you are unsure about the commitment you will be undertaking, then please arrange a one to one call with Jenni to discuss your reservations before application.

Therapy and ‘therapeutic’

Vocal Tai Chi is not therapy, but it does have therapeutic benefits. 

The implications of this are important: Jenni is not a qualified therapist. Your work with her is done at your own risk, and on the understanding that you are working with her to learn from her empirical experience running a form of voice work that has therapeutic elements. She has been involved with this kind of work for over 30 years, without complaint.  She is not there to be your personal or the group therapist as such.  If you feel you need a therapist then it is important to find someone else to work with separately. A therapist can support you alongside the apprenticeship, if necessary. 

Vocal Tai Chi is a good adjunct to therapy, but does not replace it. You need to be willing to take full responsibility for yourself at all times during the apprenticeship. 

There is a lot more background information on the kind of therapeutic elements and benefits of Vocal Tai Chi in Jenni’s forthcoming chapter (November 2023). There is a drop box link to the chapter for those who wish to read the final draft of the chapter in advance of its publication and in advance of application to find out more.  Please email apprenticevtc@gmail.com to request a hyper link to the PDF final draft of the chapter. 

“The work of Jenni Roditi is truly remarkable. All music speaks to the unconscious. But rarely do we find that conduit from the unconscious back into musical form. Jenni Roditi, employing a sophisticated use of improvisation, a deep understanding of how listening becomes musical expression and her own innate musicality, makes vocal work that is at once utterly original and completely timeless. It speaks of what is most ancient in all of us, and, simultaneously, what is most urgent, present and new. It is, quite simply, extra-ordinary. And very, very beautiful.”
Simon McBurney, Complicité founder, director, performer. March 2018.

Extra sessions

There will be occasional extra sessions with guest facilitators. These will be paid for on a one-off basis and you only need come if you want the input being offered, as extra curricular.

Structure and Location

Three modules of five days each run over nine days, one day on, one day off. 6 hours, per day. Some days may be a bit longer. I am hoping to work afternoons 2-5 and evening 6.30-9.30pm, depending on venue availabilities. Venue/s to be announced. Some evening sessions may take place at the Loft, Jenni’s live-work space, in Crouch End.

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Sunday, Tuesday.

The main reasons for spacing things out are energy conservation and absorption of the work.

Dates in 2023


Foundation: April 3 – April 11 2023.

Development: May 22 – May 30 2023

Empowerment: July 10 – July 18 2023.

Cost

£2,250.00 [£750 PER MODULE X3]

Refunds

If after all effort has been made to resolve an unexpected issue, it is still impossible to proceed, particular exceptions can be made for part or whole refunds to be provided, on which a view will taken at the time after all avenues have been explored.

Online Application

Applications are now open (from November 7th 2022) and close February 1st 2023. Notice of your acceptance on the apprenticeship will be February 15th 2023, 7 weeks before the apprenticeship begins. Enough time to make travel and accommodation arrangements as needed without rush. Payment as arranged, with, or without financial support, is requested between 15th February and 4th March. 2023. After 4th March 2023, non payment opens the way to other applicants on waiting list to take priority.

Zoom Interview

As well as a written application you may be invited to a zoom interview. This won’t be necessary in all cases but please be aware that between February 1st and February 15th 2023 you may be invited to talk with Jenni on Zoom.

Post Apprenticeship

For further information including the certificate, support follow up sessions, license to practice VTC, website practitioner listing page, and a future apprenticeship in 2024, please see here.