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Journal of Singing Article Appendix: Survey

The following is a copy of the survey used during my doctoral research as a supplement to the Journal of Singing Article, published Spring 2023. 

Welcome to Singing for Two, a survey about the experience of pregnancy for classical singers. Thank you for taking the time to participate in this survey. If we haven't met yet, my name is Catherine Gardner and I'm a classical singer and mom to a one-year old. When I began to do research regarding my own pregnancy and its impact on my singing, I found that stories and experiences from singers who had experienced pregnancy were missing from the brief medical descriptions I encountered. In response to this, I decided to focus my doctoral work on the experience of pregnancy for the classical singer. Along with in-depth interviews that I have conducted with pregnant or recently pregnant classical singers, I have created this survey to collect a broader scope of experiences. Your responses to this survey will help create a well of information and stories about pregnant classical singers. The data collected from this survey will be included in my dissertation research on the topic, and will also contribute to a public online resource I plan on developing in order to further our collective knowledge, instigate conversation and provide support and information on the subject. This survey is intended for classically trained singers who have been pregnant one or more times or who are currently pregnant. All responses are strictly confidential.

This survey will take approximately 20 minutes to complete, depending on your responses. Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences. If you would like to contact me with questions, to share your story in more depth, or to submit a personal photo performing while pregnant for my website gallery, please email me at singingfortwo@gmail.com

1.Statistical Information

i. In what country do you currently reside?

ii. Please indicate the continent(s) and/or countries in which you performed while pregnant.

__ Africa
__ Antarctica

__ Asia

__ Australia

__ Canada

__ Europe

__ South America

__ United States of America

iii. Please indicate your age by checking the appropriate box.

__ 18-25
__ 26-29
__ 30-35
__ 36-39
__ 40-45
__ 46-49
__ 50-55
__ 56-59
__ 60-65
__ 66-69
__ 70-75
__ 76-79
__ 80 and above

iv. Please check the date of your most recent pregnancy (or indicate if you are currently pregnant).

__ I am currently pregnant with my first child.

__ I am currently pregnant and already have one or more children.                                                                __ I was pregnant between 2010-2015.

__ I was pregnant between 2005-2009.

__ I was pregnant between 2000-2004.

__ I was pregnant between 1990-1999.

__ I was pregnant between 1980-1989.

__ I was pregnant between 1970-1979.

__ I was pregnant between 1960-1969.

__ I was pregnant before 1960.

v. Please indicate your current voice type.

__ Coloratura Soprano __ Soubrette__ Lyric Soprano __ Dramatic Soprano __ Lyric Mezzo

__ Dramatic Mezzo __ Contralto

vi. I made adjustments to my repertoire during my pregnancy.

__ yes __ somewhat __ no
Comment: ____________________________________________________________________

vii. My voice type changed after/in connection with my pregnancy/pregnancies.

__ yes __ no

2. Changes in Vocal Fach

viii. What was your voice type prior to pregnancy?

__ Coloratura Soprano __ Soubrette
__ Lyric Soprano __ Dramatic Soprano  __Lyric Mezzo
 __ Dramatic Mezzo __ Contralto__ Other (please specify)

ix. I switched my voice type after my ____________ pregnancy.

__ First __ Second
__ Third or more

x. My voice change has been permanent.

__ yes __ no
 __ Other (please specify)

3. Vocal Changes

xi. I experienced the following changes in my breath awareness and function during these periods of my pregnancy/pregnancies (first trimester, second trimester, third semester). Please check all that apply.

__ Increased difficulty singing long phrases
__ Increased difficulty singing coloratura passages
__ A greater understanding of "appoggio"
__ A feeling of having too much air (feeling "stacked")                                                                                        __ Difficulty achieving depth in inhalation
__ Greater ease in breath support
__ Greater ease in abdominal engagement
__ Increased difficulty with breath support
__ Increased difficulty with abdominal engagement
__ Other (please specify)

xii. During pregnancy I experienced the following vocal changes during these periods of my pregnancy/pregnancies (first trimester, second trimester, third trimester). Please check all that apply.

__ A feeling of increased suppleness in the tone                                                                                                  __ Changes in the passaggio
__ Greater ease in the upper range
__ Greater ease in the middle range                                                                                                                       __ Greater ease in the lower range
__ Huskiness in the voice
__ More difficulty in the upper range
__ More difficulty in the middle range
__ More difficulty in the lower range

Comments____________________________________________________________________

xiii. During various stages of my pregnancy (first trimester, second trimester, third trimester), I experienced pregnancy-related changes in my instrument and ability to perform.

__ Strongly agree
__ Agree
__ Neutral/Neither agree nor disagree
__ Disagree
__ Strongly disagree

Comments____________________________________________________________________

4. Physical Health

xiv. During each time period (first trimester, second trimester, third semester), please indicate the impact of the physical changes of pregnancy on your singing voice.

If you have had more than one pregnancy, please check all answers that apply to each pregnancy. If you are currently pregnant, please check up to your current trimester.

__ I experienced little or no physical changes that impacted my singing                                                          __ I experienced some physical changes that impacted my singing
__ I experienced multiple physical changes that impacted my singing                                                          __The physical changes I experienced made singing difficult for me                                                               __ The physical changes I experienced caused me to stop singing for any length of time                          __ The physical changes I experienced were beneficial to my singing
__ Other (please specify)

xv. Please check all physical symptoms that you have experienced during pregnancy (first trimester, second trimester, third trimester). Please indicated whether or not this symptom was present before pregnancy and remained the same, this symptom was present before pregnancy and worsened, or this symptom was present before pregnancy and disappeared during pregnancy

__ A feeling of having too much breath                                                                                                                  __ Breathlessness
__ Difficulty sleeping
__ Fatigue                                                                                                                                                                     __ Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)                                                                                                          __ Headaches
__ Heightened emotions
__ Increased appetite                                                                                                                                                 __ Increased frequency of urination                                                                                                                       __ Increased sensitivity to scents                                                                                                                           __ Nasal dryness                                                                                                                                                       __ Nausea

__ Nose bleeds Swelling                                                                                                                                            __ Vomiting                                                                                                                                                                 __ Other (please specify)

 

5. Professional Impact of Pregnancy

xvi. Please indicate the number of performances during each time period (first trimester, second trimester, third trimester). For those with multiple pregnancies, please check all boxes that apply.

__none __ 1-2 __ 3-4 __ 5-6 __ 7-8 __ 9-10 __ 11-12 __ 13+

xvii. How much did your career plans influence the timing of your pregnancy?

__ It was the most important factor

__ It was an important factor among others

__ It somewhat influenced the timing
__ It didn't influence the timing much

__ It had no influence

__ My pregnancy was unplanned/a surprise Other (please specify)

xviii. I felt supported in my decision to continue performing during my pregnancy by the following people in my life. (I felt very supported, I felt somewhat supported, I felt neither supported nor unsupported, I did not feel supported, my performing was discouraged, or not applicable).

__ Husband/Partner __ Family members __ Voice teacher/coaches __ Agent __ Conductors
     __ Directors __ Administrative staff __ Audience members  __ Other (please specify)

xix. Audience members commented on my pregnancy before, during or after performances.

__ Rarely __ Sometimes  __ Often __ Always

xx. Please check all boxes that apply.

If audience members commented on the fact that you were/pregnant while performing, their comments expressed their feelings of...

__ Amazement
__ Approval
__ Congratulations
__ Disapproval
__ Discomfort
__ Shock
__ Use of humor and jokes
__ Questions regarding the baby
__ I received no audience comments                                                                                                                        __ Other (please specify)

xxi. I withheld news of my pregnancy during auditions.                                                                                                                                                                                     

__ yes __ sometimes
__ no
__ I didn't participate in any auditions during my pregnancy

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xxii. I withheld news of my pregnancy to colleagues, conductors, directors etc. during gigs.

__ yes __ sometimes __ no __ Other (please specify)

xxiii. I withheld news of my pregnancy on social media (i.e. Facebook) for professional reasons.

__ yes __ no
__ Other (please specify)

6. Emotional Well-being

xxiv. My emotions were/are more accessible to me during pregnancy.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree

xxv. The knowledge that I was/am pregnant impacted my interpretation and emotional connection to my performance repertoire.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                          __ Strongly Disagree

xxvi. My attitude towards competition and/or rejection changed when I became pregnant.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                              __ Strongly Disagree

xxvii. I experienced difficulty in memorizing and/or learning repertoire in various stages of my pregnancy/pregnancies. (First trimester, second trimester, third trimester)

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                              __ Strongly Disagree

xxviii. My pre-performance routine changed when I was pregnant. Please describe changes to your routine if applicable.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                              __ Strongly Disagree

xxix. Before becoming pregnant, I experienced some form of nervousness or anxiety before performances.

__ yes __ no

xxx. Please check the box that best describes your experience.

__ During my pregnancy, I noticed a change in any nervousness or anxiety I experienced before               performances.                                                                                                                                                           __ There was a noticeable decrease in my performance anxiety during pregnancy.                                     __ There may have been a decrease in my performance anxiety; it's difficult to tell.                                  __ There was no change in my performance anxiety.

__ My performance anxiety increased during my pregnancy.                                                                            __ I don't experience performance anxiety.                                                                                                          __ Other (please specify)
xxxi. Please check the box that best describes your experience.                                                           

__ The changes in my performance anxiety remained after my pregnancy.                                                    __ Since my pregnancy, I have had less performance anxiety.                                                                              __ Since my pregnancy, I have had more performance anxiety.                                                                          __ My performance anxiety has not changed.

__ I don't experience performance anxiety.                                                                                                          __ Other (please specify)

 

7. Body Image

xxxii. I generally feel comfortable on stage in my non-pregnant body.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree
xxxiii. I feel/felt comfortable on stage with my pregnant body.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree
xxxiv. I feel/felt more positively towards my body while pregnant.                                                  

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                              __ Strongly Disagree

Comment______________________________________________________________________

xxxv. I purchased maternity gowns for performance during pregnancy.

__ yes
__ no

Comment______________________________________________________________________

xxxvi. I changed shoe size or style for my performance footwear during pregnancy.

__ yes
__ no

Comment______________________________________________________________________

xxxviii. During staging rehearsals, my pregnancy was an issue.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree __ Not applicable

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xxxviii. During costume fittings, my pregnant body was an issue.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xxxix. Special accommodations were made for me because of my pregnancy during rehearsals and performances.

__ yes __ somewhat __ no __ the parties involved were not aware of my pregnancy

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xl. I requested changes to staging due to my pregnancy.

__ yes __ no
__ Other (please specify)

8. In conclusion...

xli. During my pregnancy/pregnancies, I experienced a re-ordering of priorities which impacted my performing.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xlii. Overall, becoming pregnant positively impacted my singing.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

xliii. Overall, becoming pregnant positively impacted my singing career.

__ Strongly agree __ Agree __ Neutral __ Neither agree nor disagree __ Disagree
                                             __ Strongly Disagree __ Other (please specify)

xliv. Please feel free to share any thoughts or experiences this survey may have missed.

Comments_____________________________________________________________________

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