gender affirming voicework

Gender affirming voicework is a new music therapy method developed by Maevon Gumble which aims to address gender-based vocal needs on a holistic level through the use of singing, conversational improvisation, toning, movement, imagery, relaxation experiences, and other music-based experiences.

Gender affirming voicework can be a lot of different things depending on what you're hoping to get out of the work. It could be:

Working with your physical voice to access a more affirming sound through changing vocal habits

Working with the body to encourage relaxation and groundedness

Exploring your emotional connection with your voice, body, and/or gender and ways of feeling more at home within yourself

Some combination of these!

The overarching goal of this work, though, is to access and embody a more affirming way of existing within the world.

A typical session includes beginning with a check-in, establishing an intention for the session, engaging in mindfulness and body-focused experiences, and then moving into our intention through music- and voice-based experiences.

Intentions can include, but are not limited to:

  • shifting how high or how low your voice might be
  • shifting where your voice is resonating/vibrating within your body
  • exploring imagery/thoughts that are reflective of your experiences of your voice/body
  • working on fostering a more sustainable and affirming vocal sound
  • learning strategies to ground your voice in your body
  • practicing interacting with each other within affirming spaces

  • exploring the various emotions that might come up within this work

  • healing from gender-based trauma

  • and so on

Gender affirming voicework is grounded in the belief that we as people often experience a kind of gender trauma through being socialized to interact with and live within the world in limiting ways. Directly working with the impacts of existing within this incredibly gendered and binary world, gender affirming voicework surrounds listening deeply and profoundly to our own experiences of ourselves--our own authenticity--as a way of honoring and fully embodying authentic and affirming gender expressions. By listening in to ourselves, we might begin to speak, sing, move, and live in the most affirming and authentic way we can.

A key idea to the way we practice: We are not "prescriptive" about the voice; we are collaborative. In a nutshell, this means that you are not going to be told "this is how you must voice." Instead, we're going to explore your own voice so that you can be with your own voice and, if working to shift the physical voice, decide which aspects of your voice you are wanting to shift and then develop a set of strategies for shifting these.

This method continues to be developed as Maevon Gumble continues to work alongside 1) individuals who seek to access and embody more affirming gender expressions for themselves and 2) music therapists who seek to provide gender affirming voicework services.

At Becoming Through Sound we offer:

Individual gender affirming voicework sessions

Work individually on your identified goals specific to your voice and gender.

Gender affirming voicework workshops

Gendered Voice: Workshop Series for Exploration & Embodiment: Use music, singing, and toning in a nonjudgmental, curious, and creative environment to build a deeper relationship with your voice, more specifically developing bodily awareness of what your voice is doing from moment to moment and how that impacts both the quality of the sound and the way you experience this sound. While we will explore gendered sound, this workshop series will be less of a "how to" voice in a specific way and more of a guide on getting curious about your own voice and all the many ways we can move and shift it.

Workshop opportunities for 2022 are still being planned/scheduled. Reach out for more information.

Learn more about gender affirming voicework