Back in my junior year of high school, a good friend of mine introduced me to a musical that would change my life. I’d always loved singing, but never thought I was any good at it. Actually, I really wasn’t very good.

Enter Jekyll & Hyde, the musical. A friend of mine made me a tape (yes, a tape), of the musical, and I listened to it all summer prior to my junior year. At about the same time, I started voice lessons. When listening to the musical, I became obsessed with the character of Lucy, sung by Linda Eder. I was transfixed. What a voice! In the privacy of my car, I started singing along with her everywhere I went. I learned to use my voice and use enough air to produce a belt, something I had previously been unable to do. Soon, I was learning how to control the belt, switch from head voice to chest. I even started singing along with Anthony Warlow’s part. I was singing high and low, loud and soft.

I developed a love for musicals above and beyond what I’d already had. That fall, I auditioned for a musical at school and for the first time, got positive feedback from the staff in charge of casting the show. “Wow, Alison. You really CAN sing.” I will never forget those words. They were a validation I had never heard before, and I knew that this was a direction I really wanted to go in.

So, in essence, I owe it all to a good friend from high school, and Linda Eder.

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