Launching early 2021 at Common Ground, Gungahlin, ‘With One Voice’ is a choir with a difference – and not just because everybody is encouraged to get involved no matter their singing ability.
As communities begin to regather in the wake of the last few months of isolation, choir conductor Rodney Clancy says the choir’s mission of socialisation and engagement has never been more important than now.
As conductor, Mr Clancy brings with him over 20 years’ experience conducting choirs in Canberra and the surrounding region.
“My job is to encourage participants to make noises,” he says.
“It’s manyfold,” says Mr Clancy, when asked about the benefits of joining the choir. “Music can be used as a medium to gather friends, to gain confidence and life experiences.
“Given that we’ve all had the isolation period, it will be wonderful to join together in a community atmosphere, particularly those who have felt like they’ve needed to keep themselves away.”
Mr Clancy says there is already quite a lot of interest from the Canberra community, from both professional and amateur musicians.
“We’re looking at getting people involved who have perhaps never sung before, people who have been told music is not their thing because we are able to welcome people of any ability, whether professional or just looking to give singing a go.”
The choir is open to all, no matter their age nor cultural or linguistic background, and adults are especially encouraged.
With One Voice is an initiative of Creative Australia, which provided a grant to help get the Gungahlin choir up and singing.
Singing, according to Creative Australia’s award-winning founder Tania de Jong, engenders a wealth of positive impacts for the brain (and neuroscience agrees that it makes you happier and more creative).
The choir will also run a program called the ‘Wish List’, through which choir members request and grant wishes to one another. These can be anything from needing a lift to choir each week, seeking a job, work experience, help with a visa or even just friendship.
There are 22 With One Voice choirs around Australia boasting over 600 members – including in city centres like Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Brisbane as well as across regional Victoria.
Membership is by donation but in keeping with the choir’s philosophy, no one is turned away. If you’re excited to try your hand, or indeed your voice, head along to an inaugural workshop.
The first workshop will be held from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm on 25 November and the second from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm on 2 December at Common Ground Gungahlin (130 The Valley Avenue, Gungahlin). Due to COVID-19 restrictions, each event will be capped at 20 participants and bookings are essential. Workshops cost $15 per person.
More information can be found on the Choir’s Facebook Page.