Have you seen “La La Land”?
Were you a fan or did you not really get what all the fuss was about?
I’ve been wanting to watch it for ages but never had a chance until the other day when I was kid-free and put it on while I did the ironing – a job that was on my Superwoman Holiday “To-Do” List.
I really enjoyed it. I laughed. I cried.
I had listened to some of the songs on Spotify – you know that “City of Stars” number?
The song that really got me though was Emma Stone singing “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)”. I won’t give away anything surrounding the song – in case you haven’t watched the film.
You can listen to it here!
Such an emotional and luscious song.
I really think it was the best sung song in the movie with Emma Stone singing it with such tenderness and passion.
I love the line –
“I’ll always remember the flame.”
The creative side in all of us allows us to be free – to try and experiment and allow our minds to wander and to wonder. When our creative side is allowed to run free, it sparks a fire within us. It breathes life into our souls.
I know many people who would say they can’t draw, can’t paint, aren’t creative. But it is in there – it is inside all of us. Whether it is how you decorate your classroom, how you set the table or arrange the cheese platter when friends come over, how you sing along with your favourite songs in the car. And when we have been creative, there is a warm glow that washes over us.
“What is creative living? Any life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than by fear.” Elizabeth Gilbert
I love how Emma Stone’s character conquers her fear to unleash her creativity in order for her to have any chance of success.
FEAR – it is such a strong emotion. It is an essential in protecting us, but it can be crippling especially for our creative side.
This journey has been a leap out of my comfort zone. I was scared of opening up on the page and still am, but I also believe in what I am writing and feel such relief and joy in the process. I have also been amazed by how what I have been writing resounds with so many of you.
Now, back to this delicious song…
“A bit of madness is key,
To give us new colours to see.
Who knows where it will lead us,
And that’s why they need us.
So bring on the rebels,
The ripples from pebbles,
The painters and poets and plays.
And here’s to the fools who dream.
Crazy as they may seem.
Here’s to the hearts that break,
Here’s to the mess we make.”
“Audition (the Fools who Dream)” from “La La Land”
And you need madness – to think outside of the square.
Isn’t that the latest craze – we’re constantly being told that jobs in 10 years time don’t even exist today? We need to teach students how to collaborate, investigate, create and design. They need to be innovators and courageous and be able to stand out from the crowd.
And yet, the Arts, subjects that organically encourage and develop these skills, are often an under-appreciated, under-utilised and under-supported set of subjects in our Education system.
And we have generations of people who are feeling weighed down by the busy-ness of life. People feeling disconnected, yet overly connected to social media and technology. People of all ages, unable to sleep and with increasing levels of anxiety, depression and intolerances to food.
There is no time to stop and reconnect – so people search out programs, books, apps to help them.
And I am 100% guilty of this.
The last 2 magazines I bought – Wellbeing and Breathe – both had articles on the importance of music and singing in improving quality of life and mental health. They talk about its ability to bring people together and increase endorphins and “happiness” hormones. I know that after a good sing I feel amazing and have a “buzz”. I also get that feeling from creating art works and seeing how they impact on the performers and audience. (I have to tell you that the real reason I bought both of these magazines was for their gorgeous illustrations! They caught my eye and I was sucked in hook, line and sinker)
But being creative requires time, space and boredom. It requires the opportunity to dream and let your mind wander. I truly believe I am a better teacher when I have time in my day – where I can regroup and get my head together. Those mental ‘7 lesson, yard duty, staff meeting’ days, where you gulp down your lunch, drink cold coffee, and realise at the final bell that you haven’t been to the toilet all day, don’t make me a great teacher. I actually feel sorry for the students I teach on those days because I am not my best. I am not creative. I am not tolerant. I am cranky. I am a highly creative person and when I have insane days, I struggle. I need space and time. Even just to have a cup of tea hiding in my room.
So, here’s to us finding time to be creative in whatever form that takes. To making time to be curious and to dream.
And the world does “need us”. It needs our passion and it needs our flame.
It needs us “fools to dream” and it needs “the mess we make”.
Here’s to being creative.