02/13/2012 04:45 pm ET | Updated Apr 14, 2012

Singin' in the Rain -- The Blog

I am borrowing the name of the iconic 1952 movie musical -- and its title song -- in an attempt to describe one of those priceless New York evenings that contain all the ingredients of unexpected magic.

Last night was cold and wet enough to discourage all but the most intrepid to stay home with a good book. But my friend Margie and I had tickets to a concert at The Church of the Transfiguration, (famously known as "The Little Church Around the Corner"), presenting an emerging star, a lyric coloratura soprano, Siobhan Stagg from Australia, in a tribute to renowned opera royalty, Dame Nellie Melba and Dame Joan Sutherland.

The venue, a landmark Episcopalian church that looks like it would be at home in Switzerland, is famous among Broadway elite for intimate weddings and other occasions deemed too low-brow by more imposing houses of worship.

I would rather hang out at Jazz at Lincoln Center than the Metropolitan Opera. But Margie is a connoisseur of opera so what the heck, a short recital in an exquisite jewel box of a setting was quite inviting.

The warmth and light within was such a counterpoint to the damp dreary city that, in a strange way, the weather actually enhanced the celebratory tone of all the other elements. And what elements! This lovely young lady's glorious voice would have exploded any crystal present.

Speaking of elements, when Margie and I emerged into the wintry night, in search of food and then an available taxi, it was business as usual. The Thai cooking was served lukewarm and all the drivers were off-duty. The enchantment nonetheless remained. We were grateful there was no ice underfoot.

I guess this blog post is really about finding a true voice -- in this case the voice of a singer, a religious community, a city. Taking whatever nature or circumstances throw at us and transforming the mundane into melody takes attitude and insight plus talent. Who will ever forget Gene Kelly, grinning ear to ear, splashing blissfully through drenched streets singing at the top of his voice while kicking up a storm?

Think of some metaphors for music.

Finding one's voice is not exclusive to singing or even speaking.

An artist expresses harmony in a painting.

A guy wears a great tie, a bright grace note.

She is a symphony in silk.

I went through a number of training skills before I found my writing voice.

As an image consultant I published a newsletter -- a how-to guide for my clients -- and also an office etiquette manual.

Learning to write grant proposals with convincing passion to fund my nonprofit was a key to survival -- assisting disadvantaged folk toward self-sufficiency takes bucks.

When my precious Pekinese, Princess Yin, crossed over, my sole salvation in coping with grief was writing an unpublished memoir, Forever Princess.

I entered a contest for a writing contract with a proposal for a book to be called, Darling, You Are Divine. I thought it was good. I lost.

To express one's highest self in dress, demeanor and life work forges a path through confused thought, bringing truth to identity, revealing authenticity, integrity and beauty.

Writing for me has always served as a lamp to light the darkness, showing the way for individuality exploration, and experimentation -- always in a safe environment.

All facets of a diamond are cut to maximize the brilliance hidden within.

Sing in the rain!

Glow with your unique glory!

For more by Irene Tanner, click here.

For more on spirit, click here.