Tag: LooseLeaf Notebook; mental health

Frank Ticheli: Overcoming Anxiety & Trusting the Subconscious

Frank Ticheli conducting

Composer Frank Ticheli shares his experience with Generalized Anxiety Disorder, which manifested in his 30’s in the form of chronic pain and impeded his ability to compose. We discuss how Frank reframed his relationship to his writing process in order to reconnect with his work, difficulties with medication and therapy, and how cultivating a dialogue with one’s subconscious enriches creativity. Lastly, we discuss Frank’s An American Elegy, commissioned by the Alpha Iota Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi in memory of the victims of the mass shooting at Columbine High School, and the role that educators can play in caring for and monitoring their students’ mental health during increasingly anxious times.

Sasha Cooke: Managing Imposter Syndrome & the Benefits of Couples Therapy

Sasha Cooke

Two-time Grammy Award-winning mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke shares her experience of imposter syndrome, a feeling that one is not worthy or deserving of one’s success. We discuss how these inner bullying voices originated in relation to her body image and how music became a safe, empowering space. Lastly, Sasha shares how couples therapy and practicing gratitude enable her to take ownership and responsibility for her personal and musical life, and how she stays connected to her kids when she’s on tour.

Sidney Hopson: Resilience Through Music & Cultural Policy

Percussionist and arts policy consultant Sidney Hopson shares how he found strength and comfort in classical music as a young child struggling to care for his ailing parents. We discuss how Sidney’s discovery of cultural policy, pinpointing how he could bring the transformative power of music to others through legislative action, enabled him to combat audition anxiety, a decade of depression, and the pervasive racism of the classical music industry. Lastly, Sidney unpacks why he’s experiencing increased creativity and motivation during the pandemic and offers advice to those of us who may be struggling to produce creative work or take social action during this difficult period.

Hila Plitmann: Healing through Creativity

Soprano Hila Plitmann and I discuss how engaging in playful creativity opens a space for internal healing, connection with loved ones and the world around us, and gratitude even in times of adversity. Hila shares her thoughts on mantra singing, motherhood, and how “the mind is a playful instrument.”

Christopher Trapani: Depression, Memory & Communication

Christopher Trapani

Composer Christopher Trapani shares his experience with clinical depression and how it impacts the nature of his creative process, memory, and communication. Chris discusses how he both evades and encodes the filter of depression into his music, myths about the tortured artist, medication, and therapy, and how mental health challenges can be better addressed in the workplace and in schools.

Untangling Anxious Signals and Creative Impulses

States of high anxiety can produce thought patterns similar to those experienced during the creative process – seemingly disparate thoughts connect to create new meanings and stories – but there are also stark differences between imaginative impulses and anxious physiological signals. I unpack the positive and negative impacts of anxiety on creative work, and why the two are easily confused.