MY Inspiration:  Where You Belong by Tomorrow Bird | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Country folk duo Tomorrow Bird tell us more about their song, Where You Belong. The duo play the Green Room stage at Stockton Calling on Saturday 31st March

One of our best friends has long dreamed of performing at The National Theatre. Treading its hallowed boards sits at the very top of her bucket list, alongside having children and mastering the cartwheel… (If you’d ever seen her attempt one, you know just how gargantuan a task that is!) 

But the truth is for so many years this prized dream has eluded her.  And craving it as intensely as she does means her other (amazing) achievements have all been measured against the one mountain she has yet to climb.  Inevitably, in her darkest moments, she can’t help but question if she will ever climb it at all… 

From an early age, we are taught that practice makes perfect.  That hard work will be rewarded, slow and steady wins the race – and good things come to those who wait…

It’s a beautiful sentiment, and very often true…  But not always.  Some dreams, evidently, are simply not meant to be.  For all the athletes who dream of Olympic gold, only a small minority will ever win it.  Though every child imagines walking on the moon, just a handful on earth will ever do so.  And while every one of the UK’s 40,000 Equity-registered performers have practiced their Oscar acceptance speech at least once, the odds are only their bathroom mirror will ever hear it.

Dreams – despite what Disney has told us – don’t always come true.  Giving your all to something doesn’t guarantee you success.  In pursuing our dreams we lay ourselves bare to failure, rejection and the compounding of our deepest insecurities. It is a daily trial of both physical stamina and emotional perseverance. A relentless up-hill struggle fueled only by faith, blind passion and an all out stubbornness that hears neither rhyme nor reason…

But wait!  Before you retire your violin to the attic or your sketchpad to the bin – remember this; it is BECAUSE dreams have no guarantee of success that they matter so much.  To follow a dream is to embark upon your very own quest, much like a modern day Frodo.  And just like Frodo, our respective quests introduce us to fellow travelers that enrich our journey all the more. They may not be a fellowship of elves and wizards, but they will share in our vision as only a fellow dreamer can do. And in them we find kindred spirits in which to seek solace, and even race against, for it is inevitably our piers whose acclaim we desire the most…

In other words, the gift of a dream is in its pursuit, not its achievement.  For therein lie the reserves of hope, strength, grit and courage that will see us through the best and worst of times…

The scale and length of our journey are what create the joy in our achievements. The obstacles and insecurities we battle are what tell us we’re reaching for something worth fighting for.  And the time it takes is only the time we need to know we are worthy of what we seek.  The hard part is remembering (and believing!) in all that when everything and everyone – including the voices in your head – are telling you to ‘grow up’ and give up… 

Where You Belong is a song we wrote about this very struggle.  We wrote it last summer – on a dark and rainy day that simply demanded a rainbow… Simon’s sciatica pain had reached an all time, excruciating high; Jen was battling the remaining symptoms of months-long viral laryngitis; and our aforementioned friend had just narrowly missed out on a gig at her beloved National Theatre…  Again. 

Dreamers are so often labeled ‘airy fairy’ avoiders of reality… Well show us a dreamer and we’ll show you a warrior who has chosen to stride ever forward despite the sea of doubt within and without them. We’ll show you a burning heart that refuses to stop beating no matter how many times it breaks.  And we’ll show you a person brave enough to keep their hopes where they damn well belong; UP!

Not every dream is ‘meant to be’ (and frankly thank GOD, because there’s no way either one of us would have cut it as Prime Minister OR a space cowboy!) but invariably the dreams that come true, belong to the people who never gave up on them. 

We don’t know what your dream may be, nor do we know if it is ‘destined’ to come true or not…  But if a dream is in your heart, then the power to do something about it is in your hands.  It may not pan out the way you planned, few things in life ever do (again – thank God!) but one way or another you’ll emerge braver, stronger and wiser than ever before… And that’s just the consolation prize! 

So please, we beg you, turn a deaf ear on your inner doubts, the odds against you and the naysayers around you…  But never, ever, turn a deaf ear on your dreams. Follow them past the point you thought you could continue.  Believe in them long after you thought you would need to.  And fight for them as hard as you can, and with all that you have… Because then – whether you ever ‘get there’ or not – you’ve already won… And those sound like pretty good odds to us! 

As for our friend?  This week she begins a four month stint performing in Macbeth at The National Theatre… 

The cartwheel still eludes her…  But hey, one dream at a time! 

 

 

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