Patricia PE Janssen is a Belgian singing and piano teacher, singer, medieval harpist, author, composer, choral director, Vocal Habilitation Professional, and singing for health leader.
As a teacher, she provides vocal health workshops for amateur actors, dance teachers and people with speaking professions. As a performer, she gives a voice to medieval music with her ensemble Mensurabilis. She is currently working towards her University Specialist Certificate in Medieval Music Research and Performance at the University of Lleida through Medieval Music Besalu. Her publications include the book Maegdelycke klanken, music for the Maagdenhuis of Antwerp (2015).
Patricia discovered the Voice Study Centre (then known as Voice Workshop) during the COVID lockdown as a result of its free online short courses and cites the first-ever course she attended – ‘Intentional teaching and the breath’ with Alex Ashworth – as one of her top three favourite courses so far. She is dedicated to continuing her professional development through a wide range of courses and enjoys that “some are very science-driven, others are hands-on”.
When speaking about the courses the Voice Study Centre offers, she said: “Over time, different people present similar subjects, so it allows for a different point of view on material you already know. It also allows you to pick and mix the subjects that are interesting to you. And from a practical point of view, I love that these courses are recorded so I can still take them if I have to teach/rehearse, and I can watch them again afterwards”.
Attending courses on a variety of topics – everything from Acceptance and Commitment Coaching (ACC) to neuroscience – has given Patricia a broad perspective on the voice and all its related fields, benefiting herself and her students alike. She notes that the courses have been a “starting point” for new directions and qualifications she hadn’t previously considered. A prime example of this is singing for health, and over the years she has built expertise in the field to the extent that she is now a pioneer in Belgium (specifically Flanders) – a country where the concept is mostly very foreign.
Patricia has attended singing for health courses since 2020 (many of them comprising a series of lectures) and recently passed the five-week ITOL-accredited 'Singing for Health Practitioner: An Evidence-Based Perspective’ course which was delivered by Professor Stephen Clift at the end of 2023. Over the past few years, she has also run online singing for long COVID sessions in Flanders and has collected research data in the process. She hopes to submit a paper with her findings to an academic journal and get her results published.
That’s not all. Patricia hopes to start a research project on the potential benefits of singing for people with multiple sclerosis (MS), in collaboration with the Flemish MS Clinic, and is creating an online platform with exercise videos as part of her Singing for Parkinson’s work. This will start in the spring, accompanied by a feasibility study. A longer-term aim meanwhile is to enter partnerships with like-minded organisations in both Belgium and the Netherlands with a view to establishing a new and unprecedented singing for health network. Watch this space!
You can find out more about Patricia and her latest projects at https://patriciapejanssen.be/eng/