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Imperfect Harmony: Finding Happiness Singing with Others (Paperback)

Imperfect Harmony: Finding Happiness Singing with Others By Stacy Horn Cover Image
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July 2013 Indie Next List

“Listening to choral music has always been moving for me, but I never realized the profound emotions felt by the chorus members. In this delightful, charmingly self-effacing memoir, Horn explains how singing with the Choral Society of New York's Grace Church has been life affirming, even life saving. Drawing on the reflections of other singers, composers of choral music and scientific evidence, as well as her own experience, she beautifully puts into words the joy of singing with others in harmony. Any lover of choral music would love this book.”
— Samantha Flynn, Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh, NC


“In this one-of-a-kind celebration of singing with others, I’d call her pitch nearly perfect.”—The Atlantic

For Stacy Horn, regardless of what is going on in the world or her life, singing in an amateur choir—the Choral Society of Grace Church in New York—never fails to take her to a place where hope reigns and everything good is possible. She’s not particularly religious, and her voice is not exceptional (so she says), but like the 32.5 million other chorus members throughout this country, singing makes her happy. Horn brings us along as she sings some of the greatest music humanity has ever produced, delves into the dramatic stories of conductors and composers, unearths the fascinating history of group singing, and explores remarkable discoveries from the new science of singing, including all the unexpected health benefits. Imperfect Harmony is the story of one woman who has found joy and strength in the weekly ritual of singing and in the irresistible power of song.

About the Author

Stacy Horn is the author of five nonfiction books, including Imperfect Harmony. Mary Roach has hailed her for “combining awe-fueled curiosity with topflight reporting skills,” while others have described her work as "immaculately researched" and "several notched above the typical reporter's insights." Horn’s commentaries have been heard on NPR’s All Things Considered, and she is the founder of the social network Echo. She lives in New York City, and when she's not researching and writing, she's singing soprano 2 (the best part) with the Choral Society of Grace Church or helping care for animals at the ASPCA Animal Hospital, where she is frequently forced to chant quietly to herself, "No, Stacy, you may not take that puppy (or kitten) home."

Praise For…

“In this one-of-a-kind celebration of singing with others, I’d call her pitch nearly perfect.” --The Atlantic Monthly

“If ever a book could make you want to break out in song, this is it!” --American Profile

“[A] beautifully researched and eloquent book.” --The Huffington Post

“In this joyful and contemplative memoir about the power of singing together, Horn celebrates the transcendent consolations to be found in the act of making song.” --More

“Horn create[s] a paean to the joys of communal singing that’s both familiar and thrillingly new, and worthy of a closing standing ovation.” --Forward

“Horn eloquently traces the evolution of ensemble singing . . . She writes movingly about how singing about death and simply breathing together bring a transcendent feeling of harmonious belonging.” --Publishers Weekly

Product Details
ISBN: 9781616200411
ISBN-10: 1616200413
Publisher: Algonquin Books
Publication Date: July 2nd, 2013
Pages: 256
Language: English