With the video for her latest single, Nashville singer-songwriter Paola Proctor has managed to turn the story of an emotionally fraught breakup into an opportunity to advocate for the importance of mental health awareness. The “How Can I?” music video made its premiere on Digital Journal today. The single was released last month and is now available on all digital and download streaming platforms.
The video is a simple depiction of two lovers in the midst of a face-to-face confrontation. In one continuous take, Proctor and co-star Caleb Sprinkle take viewers on an emotional journey using nothing more than the power of their body language and facial expressions.
Proctor’s experience as an actress comes through right from the beginning. As the flamenco-inspired nylon guitar intro plays, it’s clear that she is preparing to have a very difficult conversation with a lover who’s scorned her. Her portrayal of internal conflict here perfectly reflects her real-life struggle with embracing vulnerability. Proctor credits the research of Dr. Brene Brown with bolstering her ability to be open about her emotions.
“Her research and work on vulnerability has completely reshaped my idea of what strength looks like. It has enabled me to lean into my vulnerability because I now see it as a sign of strength where I used to think showing emotion was a sign of weakness.” – Paola Proctor
Proctor puts her money where her mouth is with her expressive delivery later on in the video. As the chorus begins, the brave face Proctor put on for the first verse begins to crack. By the second verse, we see her becoming physical with her partner, grasping for his shirt and pressing down on his knees. This anger gives way to a tearful breakdown upon the arrival of the second chorus. After briefly regaining her composure in the final pre-chorus, Proctor falls into a state of despair once again. Her body language begins to mirror the uncomfortable fidgeting Sprinkle has been displaying throughout the video, as if to suggest she feels as ashamed of her conflicted reaction as her boyfriend might be of his unfaithfulness.
In case Proctor’s emotional performance wasn’t adequately conveying her suffering, we hear her muffled sobbing as Sprinkle looks helplessly into the camera and the video fades to black. What follows is a brief message from Proctor on the value of therapy. Fans can rest assured that her call to reframe the discussion around mental health is sincere. Mental health awareness has always been a cause near and dear to Proctor’s heart.
“I’m very passionate about making mental health practices a normal part of society. I want it to be completely normal for people to talk about going to therapy or group sessions, or whatever helps them cope with the inevitable curve balls that life will throw.” – Paola Proctor
On what she wants to accomplish with her career in music, Proctor elaborates: “I hope to be an example of personal development and I hope to break the stigma surrounding mental health.”
Biography – Singer/songwriter Paola Proctor manifests herself through art and performances, breathing life into the skills that have molded her journey. Paola brings “un sabor rico” from her rich Mexican American heritage and diverse international cultural experiences to her music.
Paola (pronounced Pah-oh-lah) is a sophisticated artist whose music and talent span genres and cultures, just as her heritage and personal experiences have made her into the exciting, unique performer that she is today!
Paola has recorded and released music in both English and Spanish. Watch and listen to her Spanglish single “No Puedo Mas.” Paola is excited to share more from her Latina roots with new bilingual, Latin Pop music coming soon!
First performing as a child in church choirs, Proctor discovered an innate talent and passion for music performance. Guided by world-class teachers and through classical singing and cello lessons, Proctor furthered her musical prowess.
Proctor draws inspiration from living and traveling in Europe and the Middle East. Her musical career includes performances with the Doha Community Orchestra for the Prince of Wales, the Youth Orchestra of the Middle East at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi, and the Florida All-State Choir with Gulliver Preparatory Academy.
While attending the University of Miami Frost School of Music, she performed the National Anthem at collegiate sporting events and for the Miami Marlins. She also was showcased at local events such as National Voice Day and The Young Artist Initiative.
Proctor soon relocated to Nashville, Tennessee to further her musical endeavors. Within three months, she sold her first copyright to Caterpillar Construction, a Fortune 500 company. Released in spring 2018, Proctor’s single “Tongue Tied” was featured on Lightning 100’s evening show, The 615.
Proctor aspires to connect her personal experiences to her music, developing lyrics and melodies that transcend the traditional landscape.