An evolving series of participatory massed choral video works and half-time live singing events

Sing Nina Simone’s Feeling Good with San José State University athletes, fans, students, and community allies! Join us in building a democratic chorus and personal and collective anthem honoring women's athletics and equitable, inclusive community. Your footage will be gathered with others as part of a series of evolving massed choral video works and live singing events beginning with a collaborative half-time event for an SJSU Women’s Basketball game in February 2020. Your voice will be lifted by hundreds of other voices, and your face will be gathered with hundreds of other faces. Together, our sounds resonate! Sing—and may it feel good—by following the simple steps below. [Why sing? Learn more]

INSTRUCTIONS

Sing by yourself or with others. The whole process only takes a few minutes. You’ll need an internet connection, earphones, computer/tablet or smart phone. *Chrome or Firefox browser on Desktop/Laptops/Android Phones recommended. Support for iPhone coming soon!

1. Put your earphones in!
By using earphones throughout this process, only your voice will be recorded and layered with many others in the final video installation.

2. Take a peek at Video 1. You will be singing along to this video, guided by the song lyrics in captions.
Please note that the first verse and one small section at the end are sung as a call and response.
Nina sings when the text is in GOLD; You sing together when the text is in BLUE. Rewind Video 1 to the beginning when you are done.

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3. Click “allow” on Video 2 to activate your camera and mic. You should see yourself now.
*Some browsers may require you to update or enable flash player settings.

 

4. Press the red record button on Video 2 to start the recording. Then press play on Video 1 and sing along to the BLUE text.
It doesn’t have to be perfect. Your footage will be gathered with many others. Together, we are collectively resonant!

 

5. When you have finished press the red record button a second time to stop the recording. The video should save automatically.

That′s it! Feel free to give it another go—refresh the page to begin the process again. Thank you for adding your voice!

 

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UPCOMING EVENTS & PERFORMANCES


SJSU Women’s Basketball Game Half-time Event: February, 2020.

[More details to come]

Future events will be posted here as dates become available.


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NEWSLETTER

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It’s a new dawn / It’s a new day / It’s a new life / For me / And I’m feeling good / I’m feeling good
— Nina Simone’s Feeling Good

Dear potential singer (who may or may not be able to hold a tune),

We don’t sing much in public together—certainly not like they do in Europe’s football stadia, and rarely for women’s sports. As an artist and former college athlete, I've thought about how we might create singing rituals and ‘sporting anthems’ to harness our voices together and celebrate women’s athletics and female-identified sports. What song might build upon the legacy of black athlete activism here at SJSU in soldarity with racial and gender equity? What song might help us to cultivate a stronger sense of belonging in the midst of uncertainty and division? What song might hold space for tension and becoming? And how might collective singing embolden us to raise our voices and work towards an equitable and inclusive community—after the song is over? 

In collaboration with SJSU Athletics, Band & Choir, I chose Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” after lots of input (and some missteps). Because at heart, this is a song about the radical act of feeling good in the face of deep uncertainty, inequity, and division—about a new dawn, a new day. And because we’ve become increasingly convinced that “pleasure activism” (adrienne marie brown) has greater potential to charge our courage and harness our voices than our current polarizing discourse. Together, our sounds resonate!

And so, in this uncertain moment, we invite you to join your voice with others and sing Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” alongside a choir of San José State University athletes, sports fans, students, and community allies. Your voice will blend into a democratic chorus as part of an evolving series of generative video installations and live singing events beginning with a collaborative half-time event for an SJSU Women’s Basketball game in February 2020. As part of this inaugural event, we encourage you to visit the various campus affinity groups and resource tables to learn more about the ways in which you can get further involved in the movement of equity and inclusivity. 

We know many of us aren’t used to singing. It can be uncomfortable. We invite you to make space for uncertainty and feel good anyway. Your voice will lift up with many others, and your face will layer into a larger ‘sea’ of faces, as inspiration for future singing. Before singing, we encourage you to learn more about the deep roots and practice of call and response and improvisational scatting (spontaneous, melodic vocalizations of 'nonsense' syllables) in African American music.

May we raise our voices together as an antidote to isolation, silence, and despair, to build on ways that collective singing rituals can deepen our sense of belonging and embolden us to work towards a more equitable and just community. Please visit this link to sing now, directly from your computer. Feel good and sing together!

Thank you!

Mel Day [Artist and Lecturer, SJSU Art & Art History Department] in collaboration with SJSU AthleticsBand & Choir.

Sleep in peace when the day is done, that's what I mean / And this old world is a new world / And a bold world / For me... / And I'm feeling good...

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Thank you for raising your voice!

Feeling Good is a participatory, evolving video installation, massed choral work, and live singing event organized by Mel Day in collaboration with SJSU Athletics, Band & Choir along with many athletes, fans, students, student groups, and community allies.


SPECIAL THANKS

SJSU Women's Basketball Team
Blake Sasaki, SJSU Senior Associate Athletics Director for External Relations
Dr. Craig McKenzie, SJSU Assistant Director of Bands / Director of Athletic Bands
Dr. Jeffrey Benson, SJSU Director of Choral Activities
Ryan O’Rorke, SJSU Assistant Athletics Director for Marketing, Digital Media and Licensing
Joshua Moon, SJSU Promotions & Fan Experience Coordinator
Dr. Anthony Raynsford, SJSU Art & Art History Department Chair
Bonnie Sugiyama, SJSU Director of the Pride & Gender Equity Center
Nico Peck & Dr. Oona Hatton, SJSU Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

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Leily Khatibi, Web Designer & SJSU Graduate Assistant
Juyoung Ku, Undergraduate Assistant
Miles Caliboso, Video Editing Assistant
Dr. Haydn James, Massed Choir & Sports Conducting Consultant
Miriam Dym, Copy Editing Consultant
Giles Day, IT Tech Support

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Video still courtesy: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS Ron Kroon / Nederlands: Collectie /
Archief : Fotocollectie Anefo / 14 December 1965

Custom arrangement license: #353609 "Feeling Good" [from 'The Roar of the Greasepaint - The Smell of the Crowd']; Songwriters: Leslie Bricusse & Anthony Newley
This song is from the album I Put A Spell On You [1965] produced by Hall Mooney.


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Project organized by Mel Day [Artist and Lecturer, SJSU Art & Art History Department] in collaboration with SJSU Athletics, Band & Choir.

We welcome your questions, comments, and input. Please contact us for more info.