After discovering the creative joys of collaborative vocal improvisation, the Suffolk singer wants to help people reach into their hearts and bring out their voices
“What sound does my body make?” is a question that has followed Briony Greenhill since she was a child in Suffolk, sitting and singing on the stairs of the family home. It’s there today in her work as one of the world’s leading proponents of collaborative vocal improvisation (CVI) and, too, in the power and intimacy of her new album, Crossing the Ocean. “These voices that we have are part of our human design,” she says. “There’s a beauty in bringing that out and making music with it.”
Vocal improvisation is different to other forms of singing. There is no song, no score, no lyrics. “When you’re not given a song, and you end up learning to trust the song that comes through you in the moment, it’s like finding the rubber ring you can trip down the river on,” Greenhill says.