Five ways GL Voice works to be a queer-friendly space

The importance of committing to being a welcoming singing space

June is Pride monthand this year I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge that while the arts world has long been a place where queer people are out and proud, not every singing space is friendly and/or safe for all. It is something I have witnessed myself and spoken out against, and will always speak up about.

I want you to know that GL Voice is committed to being a welcoming space for queer singers.

Georgia is wearing a white tshirt with a painted heart with an updated pride flag rainbow. She's showing it off with her hands and smiling at the camera.

It is very important to me that everyone can come and be their whole selves in our space.

GL Voice has always been LGBTQIA+ friendly, and strives to be a safe space for queer folx. 

I say strives, because creating a safe space requires working through our inherent biases and accepting that we’ll never get it perfect.

Five ways GL Voice is committed to being a queer friendly space

I acknowledge that as a cis-het-white female, I cannot know the lived experience of my queer clients AND I can listen and learn and do my best to ensure our space is friendly, welcoming, and a safe place to be queer.

1. I will ask you your pronouns, and use them correctly

How you identify and what name you want me to use is yours to share, and mine to get right. That’s it!

2. How much you share of yourself, is your decision

Singing is vulnerable, and often a place where we can be quite introspective. We ask ourselves a lot of questions and reflect a lot, but I will never expect you to share all your answers with me. You do not have to justify or explain your decisions of what or not to share.

3.Our work together is confidential

I’m serious about your privacy, and everything that happens in our work together is confidential. I have a whole policy about it! Your sensitive data is protected with care.

Equally, what and how much you share in our shared spaces – Studio Class, Karaoke Parties – is up to you. And I expect all Studio Members to adhere to the studio values, which include being open and respectful of everyone’s individuality. We’ve never had any instances of bad behaviour between members in the Studio, (because you’re all great!) but you can be sure that if it ever happened, I would shut it down immediately.

4. You choose what you sing, and how.

Finding something that rings true for you, so you can be your full self as you sing, is important. You can bring literally any music to our work, and we will work together to adapt it to you, your voice, and your skill level.

Part of adapting to you, includes gender-bending, changing pronouns, changing keys and even changing the odd lyric if we need to.

That said, we will always honour the origins of the song too, and sometimes that will end up with you deciding not to sing it because you cannot sing it with integrity. It’s a nuanced discussion that requires openness and humility.

5. We celebrate diverse music together

One of the joys of a diverse space where everyone is choosing their own music, is how much music we all get to explore from each other. I don’t think we’ve ever had a group event with only white-cis-het-male composers. Not by design, but organically because we love our diverse music at GL Voice.

What music are you rearing to sing? Book a discovery call and join our Voice Studio.

Share this list with a singing space near you

These are things I strongly believe should be industry-standard, but sadly I know they are not. Still, we can bring about change if we start at home. If you are in another singing space, and you don’t think all these things are normalised in that space, talk to the person in charge and ask them about it (if it is safe for you to do so).

About the Author

Georgia Aussenac is a Voice Coach specialising in fostering confidence, joy and fun for adults looking to make singing a part of their lives.

Georgia also coaches English-speaking singers and voice teachers on French diction.

With a particular passion for everything vocal health, Georgia offers Vocal SOS coaching to anyone who uses their speaking voice professionally and is struggling to keep up with the demands of their job.

You can work with Georgia online from anywhere in the world, as long as your schedules match up!