The Moment I Knew I Wanted To Make Music: Toddy

by - March 21, 2024

Photo courtesy of Denisa Rahma

I grew up in a musical household. My mum was a music teacher and my parents met doing community musical theater together. I was always musically inclined. My mum wrote in my baby journal that I was singing songs fully in tune as soon as I could speak.

My mum brought me to my first opera when I was 8 years old. My friends from choir were cast in the children’s chorus of Engelbert Humperdinck’s Hansel und Gretel. This was the day I fell in love with opera. I was absolutely driven to be cast in the next opera. I worked very hard and at 10 years old I was cast in the children’s chorus of Bizet’s Carmen with the Calgary Opera.

I will never forget the moment I first stepped out on stage on opening night, marching across the stage with the heat of the stage lights singing “Avec la Garde Montante”. It was at this moment that I decided I would dedicate my entire life to opera. I became absolutely obsessed with classical music. Diving head first into music theory, music history, international phonetic alphabet and the stories of the great opera singers.

My musical journey wasn’t all sunshine. I went to McGill University and by the end of my degree, music was killing me from the inside out. Music was my biggest love and my biggest heartbreak.

It was my entire identity and letting go of that dream was the hardest thing I’ve done. I never thought I’d come back to singing but as the great saying goes: “If you love something, let it go. If it comes back to you, it's yours forever. If it doesn’t, then it was never meant to be.”

I went on to become a professional standup comedian, I won a drag TV show, and all of that in a wild series of events brought me to this album deal. I had to step away from singing in order to let it find me again. This album has made me fall in love with music all over again. It wasn’t until after I graduated that I was told by a voice teacher, “You know singing should be easy, right?” I truly had never heard that in my life. Hard work and joy don’t have to be mutually exclusive. I hold myself to a high standard but am slowly learning that I can have fun and still have a good (or perhaps even better) product.

The Moment I Knew I Wanted to Make Music is always. Music is my breath. Whether I’m aware or not, it keeps me alive.

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