Young and old join together in universal language of music
IT'S never too late to learn to sing and enjoy the benefits and fun of singing in a choir, according to musician Chris James.
Chris and his partner, Jenny, run community choirs Voices On Fire in three locations these days with an aim to "provide a safe and supportive environment for people to discover and enjoy their voices - no prerequisites".
"After working with the benefits of voice and expression in speaking and singing for many years, Jenny and I started running community choirs over four years ago," Chris said.
"We run them in Lismore, Brisbane and the Gold Coast. The Gold Coast choir started over a year ago."
Chris said part of the overall joy came from creating a strong sense of community.
"There is a strong community purpose about bringing people together and the joy of when we all unite on an equal footing, so to speak," Chris said.
"We know that everyone, and we mean everyone, given the opportunity, can sing clearly AND in tune! "Singing is proven to be very good for your health, your lungs, for stress, and to keep you alert and connected, both with yourself and with others. One of the most important aspects of this is how empowering it is for people to discover that they have beautiful strong and clear voices... This impacts on affects every part of their life."
Chris and Jenny's choirs are multi-generational and open to everyone.
"We have five-year-olds to 80-year-olds coming ... you don't have to know how to sing," Chris said.
"We have many that think that they can't sing come and amaze themselves with how easy it is and how the group sounds.
"We get together to sing in our regular choir sessions and are always open for community events for the choirs to sing and perform at." Last year we were part of the Brisbane massed choir festival... we were a hit :-) We do Christmas events and parties, and festivals etc."
Both Chris and Jenny admit that music and singing has been a very big part of their lives. both personally and professionally and they love passing on their love for it to others.
"I have been teaching internationally about the natural healing power of sound, and helping people discover their voices for over 30 years," Chris said.
"We have run professional development courses, for doctors, the Australian Army, the NSW Police and many corporate sessions, I also offer private voice and expression sessions for singing and speaking from my music studio."
They have just returned from teaching a summer school in Beijing, China., where they have more than 300 international students singing songs and learning about their voices.
"Music is a universal language that we can easily experience together," Chris said.
"Jenny has released two albums, and her music features in choirs and workshops all around the world. "We always present themes in our music that uplift and inspire people."
Info for choirs or events:"Anyone who would like to join the choirs, or would like us at an event can contact us on admin@
The Gold Coast Community Choir meets monthly, depending on Chris's international schedule.