De geheimen van een Swingle Singer



Sara Brimer Sara Brimer was born and raised in East Tennessee in the United States. Throughout her high school and college years she was active in her school choir and community productions. While in high school she took part in The Music Man, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and played the role of Eliza in My Fair Lady. During her years at East Tennessee University where she studied Music Education, Sara was given the roles of Suzanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Mabel in Pirates of Penzance, The Diva in La Divina, and also took part in productions of Carmen and Dido and Aneas. In 2006 Sara toured in Germany as a soloist and ensemble singer with the ETSU Chorale lead by Dr. Thomas Jenrette. In the summer of 2008 she auditioned for the Swingle Singers , and moved to London in January 2009 to begin touring with the internationally acclaimed group.

Everyone thinks that being a Swingle Singer is AMAAAAZING. Well it is definitely that but it is also many other things that most people would never imagine it could be. Being a Swingle can be terrifying, shocking and shameful, even lonely.


I have never been in another professional A Cappella group, so I cannot say for certain if everyone goes through the same kinds of things, but I have a niggling suspicion that others may have had similar experiences. There is so much that happens in this job that doesn’t involve singing really difficult Fugue lines meant for an organ master’s nimble fingers.


When I say “terrifying” I do not mean getting “the jitters” every single time you go on stage to perform. I mean the feeling of terror when you think you might lose your life in an airplane, being struck by lightning whilst flying high above the Atlantic Ocean (this is a true tale).


When I say “shocking and shameful” I don’t mean the numerous possible debaucheries that present themselves to musicians who will be leaving the country the next day (we do not play those games!). I mean the shock of seeing poverty and starvation running rampant amongst the locals on the way to your fully catered concert.


Last, but especially not least, when I say “lonely” I don’t mean that there aren’t enough fans, that people don’t want to be your friend, or that you are physically alone. These things are almost never the case. The “lonely” I’m referring to comes from having friends that are getting married, having children, having epic birthday parties, being diagnosed, having surgery, etc. and you cannot be there with them. Even more cutting is that you have chosen this path. It’s a strange and incredible position to be in.


I have to say I think I got lucky. I got lucky because I have co-workers who are kind and supportive. Co-workers who are some of the best friends anyone could have. Co-workers who I have to trust often more than my own instinct, yet I can do that because of who they are. I love my job and the people I work with. It is likely to change with the seasons because that’s how we work but, like any great relationship with ups and downs, those shining moments of gold are so worth the fight.


It is not all sunshine and rainbows, it is chock full of hard work and tears. In the end, quite often, those things are more beautiful than anything else.