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I cannot sing, but I am a singer. Singing and music - Yale Common App Personal Statement


amishiii 1 / 1  
Oct 31, 2016   #1
I cannot sing, but I am a singer. Growing up in a small family of four, I've never been a fan of the ever-present quiet. I could too often hear the inner workings of our house and the slight bustle of wind against the windows that made everything seem solemn and lonely. I'd never known anything different-that is until I heard music for the first time.

It wasn't until I got a ride home from a friend that I was introduced to a magical box stuck inside cars that plays sounds so melodious, the ear can only dream of. As my friend in the passenger seat turned the knob on this alien contraption, I felt as though while taking this trip in their car, we were simultaneously being transported elsewhere through channels of music. I was in awe. How had I never experienced this before? As my friend changed the station from Lil Wayne's "Lollipop," which had given me unexplainable confidence and swagger, to Fergie's "Big Girls Don't Cry," which ironically made us all want to bawl our eyes out, I knew I found something special. Color and beauty flooded into my once greyscale life and light sparked in my eyes. People were sharing in agony and passion and love all through a few simple movements of the mouth.

The very next time I got into a car with my quiet parents, I had the radio on before they even let go of the breaks. I soon found that they didn't share the same affinity for this beautiful creation. So used to their traditional Indian music, if any at all, they demanded I shut off this horrid noise that did little for them, but give headaches. However, I was relentless, as those in love often are. I turned on the radio every time I entered the car and every time I was told to shut it off but, soon enough, I had learned the words to my favorite songs. Once the radio was shut off, I began to sing, belting out the words to Kelly Clarkson's "Breakaway," knowing music is how I, myself, would breakaway. I sung so loud, I drowned out my entire family's constant criticism of my supposedly croaking voice. Though my mouth may have been moving, Kelly's voice was the one playing in my head. I couldn't care less how I sounded; I no longer felt the painstakingly quiet car rides and I no longer felt alone.

Eventually, my parents gave in to the wonders of the radio, probably in hopes I would stop singing, but I never have. Now, at 17 years old, I have even gotten my parents to sing along with me, as they finally found beauty in it as well. My house is no longer the somber place it once was; it's a home filled with constant humming, laughter, and misplaced dance steps. I am in turn filled with light and love. I better connect to my once reserved parents, and they better connect to world around them. Music unites me with something much bigger than myself and transports me into a much more beautiful place than I have ever been, and my voice gives me the power to call on this gift whenever I desire. I'd be a fool to not use it.

When pencils were being passed out before I took my ACT's and other students were going over formulas in their head, I was singing. When warming up for my regional tennis finals, while my opponent was running last minute drills with her coach, I was singing. When comforting scared children while volunteering at my local hospital, I was singing. It gives me the strength I need to reach my goals. It makes me brave. It makes me who I am. I cannot sing, but I am a singer and I will be for the rest of my life.
slvrd - / 1 1  
Oct 31, 2016   #2
Hi! here are some comments :)

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... different-that is, until I heard ...

... did little for them, but give headaches.

... I entered the car, and every time I was told to shut it off every time.
..."Breakaway," knowing that music is how I,...
... I drowned out my entire family's constant criticism of ...
... quiet car rides.and I no longer felt alone.

I am, in turn, filled with light and love.

... and transports me into a much more beautiful place more beautiful than any I have ever been (...) I'd be a fool to notnot to use it.

When pencils were being passed out before I took my ACT's andWhile other students (...) in their heads as pencils were being passed out before the ACTs, I was singing. When warming up for my regional tennis finals, whileWhile my opponent was running last minute drills with her coach before our regional tennis finals, I was singing.

I cannot sing, but I am a singer, and I will be ...
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 10,529 3444  
Oct 31, 2016   #3
Amishi, would you mind providing us with a copy of the prompt that you are trying to respond with this essay? You should always attach it with the essay posting because we use that as the guideline in reviewing your essay. At the moment, we cannot make an accurate analysis of your work since we do not have any idea as to what the topic is. I can however, try to provide a general analysis of the essay based upon what you have written.

I cannot really get a clear idea as to the purpose of this essay. Is this a background response? An open topic? Or perhaps a reference to something that you feel sets you apart from others? There are so many possibilities in this essay that I need you to clearly tell me what its purpose is.

The up close and personal approach to writing is good. It almost feels like you crafted this essay to be a personal statement. Is that what it is? The content is an eye opening look at who you are and what helps to make you this person. Yet, I cannot be sure that this essay meets the requirements of the prompt it was written for. I guess I can give a more accurate analysis and better review the essay once you provide the prompt for it.
OP amishiii 1 / 1  
Oct 31, 2016   #4
@Holt
Prompt: Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 10,529 3444  
Oct 31, 2016   #5
Amishi, would you consider using the closing paragraph as your opening paragraph instead? That particular paragraph has a memorable slant to it that makes one interested to read more about your connection to music. If you switch around the paragraphs in the essay, you can create not only a more interesting essay, but also a more imaginative and involving discussion.

By doing the switch, the essay gains a more personal connection with the rest of the stories that you are sharing with the reviewer. As of now, the essay is quite long and I feel that there is room to make it shorter in order to hold the attention of the reviewer. I believe we can better assess how to shorten the essay once you have made the switch in the paragraphs. When an essay is open topic, you need to make sure that you get your core message across before the reviewer loses interest in what you have to say. Right now, the essay feels like a long series of opening statements that suddenly comes to an end. There is a need to develop a beginning, a body, and a conclusion to your essay. That is what we will try to do with my suggested edits.


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