Celebrating people with Parkinson's and their supporters
Rehearsals are held at:
Moorooka Community Centre,
40 Gainsborough St
Moorooka QLD 4105 Get Directions
What if I can't sing?
Would you feel better if we tell you that almost every single member of this glorious choir asked that question before joining? Honestly, don’t worry about it! Besides, our Musical DIrector thrives on a challenge!
What if I can't read music?
Nor can most people who join us! Our Musical Director will have you reading score from day 1 – you’ll be following the lyrics and the basic flow of the ‘dots’. It’s great for getting those neurons multiplying and firing, whether you have Parkinson’s Disease or not!
I’ve never sung in a choir before - does this matter?
No, not in the least! (See the answer to the first FAQ: What if I can’t sing?).
They wouldn’t let me sing in the school choir! What if I also make your choir sound terrible?
This is a question we hear quite a bit. You won’t make us ‘sound terrible’! (See answers to the previous three FAQ).
When and where are rehearsals held?
When: 2 pm to 4 pm each Tuesday during school terms
Where: Moorooka Community Centre – 40 Gainsborough St, Moorooka QLD 4105
How much does it cost?
We keep our fees to well below half the going rate!
There are constant overheads and other ongoing expenses to be covered, yet we are able to keep our fees very low as our Musical DIrector works free-of-charge and our Management Committee members are all volunteers.
Please discuss our fee structure when you enquire about joining.
For the musical side of things, you’ll just need a pen or pencil and an A4 display folder filled with plastic display sheets. You’ll be given the music scores and lyric sheets that will go into your folder. It’s also a good idea to bring along water and a warm jacket (even a light-weight jacket in Summer – trust us on this!). And of course, don’t forget your meds.
Do I have to audition for the choir?
No, the New Voice Choir is a non-auditioned choir.
Do I have to have Parkinson’s to join?
No. You simply need to be aware of, and supportive of, the other members and the overriding philosophies of the New Voice Choir. Please refer to the page Why Do We Exist on this website.
My husband/wife has Parkinson’s but I can’t talk him/her into joining. Can I still join?
Yes, no problem! In fact, we already have members who are carers and whose partners are yet to join us. We understand that the role of a carer can be a tough one at times and we welcome people just like you into the warmth and support of our choir community.
Will I feel weird if I come along on my own?
No, not at all. Many of us come along on our own. And if you join us in the New Voice Choir, you won’t be feeling as though you’re on your own for long!
Will singing help my voice?
Definitely! – and that’s not only for people who have Parkinson’s!
Regarding the benefits of singing for people with Parkinson’s, there are many studies, articles, YouTube clips, and TED Talks to be found online. A few are listed on the Links and Resources page.
I can't speak very clearly and I speak very softly - does this matter?
Not at all. Many of our members who have Parkinson’s have speech problems and report some great improvements after they’ve been with us for a while. Our choir will help you with your voice. And you won’t only be working once per week as our Musical Director creates practice files or CDs so you can continue with the practice at home between rehearsals.
I’ve heard lots about the New Voice Choir but I’m not convinced. What’s so special about it?
Seriously, it would be easier to tell you what isn’t special about it! But don’t just take our word for it – read the testimonials in the Our Stories page of this website!
I’m supposed to work on my voice all week long. How will only one weekly rehearsal help?
Our Musical Director creates files (or CDs) for you to use at home between rehearsals.
Why are you called the New Voice Choir?
A few reasons. We help people with Parkinson’s with speech difficulties, hence we give rise to ‘new voice’.
We’re also a new voice within the Parkinson’s community – we demonstrate some of the wonderful abilities of people who have Parkinson’s Disease (and supporters of course), and we help to increase the general public’s awareness of Parkinson’s.
And as an enormous added benefit, we give ‘new voice’ to all of our members – people with Parkinson’s, carers and supporters alike – who find friendship, laughter and joy by being a part of our choir!
What does the Inc. in the choir’s name mean?
It stands for Incorporated.
If you’re up for the jargon – New Voice Choir Inc. is a not-for-profit Incorporated Association.
In other words, we’re officially a not-for-profit organisation. All nice and legal with all the t’s crossed and all the i’s dotted.
If the choir is not-for-profit, why do I have to pay fees?
We have many overheads and ongoing expenses.
We are transparent about our finances to the nth degree and, as a choir member, you will be entitled to have all the gory details! (Just don’t go asking for a financial report in the middle of a rehearsal).
Is the choir running for a scientific study? Will it close down afterwards?
No and, therefore, no.
That said, we are always open to studies that could involve the New Voice Choir!
Who runs the New Voice Choir?
If you mean from the musical side of things, our Musical Director is Linda McIntyre. You can read more about her in Our Team and throughout this website.
In addition, we have a dedicated Management Committee, also listed in the Our Team page of this website.
Does the Musical Director really know what she’s on about?
Short answer: Yes, she does!
Longer answer: You can read more about her in Our Team and throughout this website.
How much does the choir pay the Musical Director?
Nothing! Linda does the job free-of-charge. She describes it as her way of giving back to the Parkies community that gives her so much. (If you haven’t already twigged, Linda has Parkinson’s).
Can I try the choir out without committing beforehand?
Sure! (We’re fairly confident you’ll want to make the commitment – most people do).
Do we just sit there and do boring voice exercises the whole time?
No! And again, an emphatic NO!!
The mere thought of it makes our collective skin crawl.
I can join loads of free singalong groups if I want. Why does yours cost money?
We have overheads and other ongoing expenses. And the New Voice Choir is not a singalong group! We are a specialised choir for people with Parkinson’s.
Is the New Voice Choir part of PQI (Parkinson’s Qld. Inc.)?
No, we’re a completely separate organisation although many of our members are also members of PQI.
I’ll have to talk with my neurologist/ GP/ therapist first. What if she/he doesn’t want me to join?
We can’t even imagine any doctor or therapist telling you that! However, we will never attempt to give you medical advice or to undermine your relationships with your medicos, so please do whatever you feel is right for you.
Where do all your members travel from?
They come from all over greater Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, and even beyond!
I can’t drive myself to rehearsals. Is any help available?
Please ask us! There are often opportunities for this sort of assistance when choir members who drive happen to come through your way or perhaps even live nearby. Also keep in mind that our rehearsals at the Sherwood Uniting Church are close to public transport (both bus and train).
Why don’t you open another choir in a more convenient part of Brisbane?
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to find a location that’s close to everybody. And our Musical Director can work free-of-charge for only one group due not only to financial constraints but also to the fact that she has Parkinson’s herself and, therefore, has to look after her own health.
Tuesdays don’t suit me. Will you ever have rehearsals on other days of the week?
We can never say never, of course, but at this stage, it’s unlikely that we’d open on any other day/s. Tuesday afternoon is a good choice for us as we don’t clash with other significant community groups that run for the benefit of people with Parkinson’s, nor do we clash with support group meetings. Regarding having multiple choir rehearsals per week, please see the previous FAQ.
Can I sit during rehearsals or will you expect me to stand?
Everyone sits, although on and off during the rehearsals, those who can, stand for a while. We would never expect you to stand if you’re someone who needs to stay seated.
What sort of people are in the choir?
Fabulous people! Funny, warm, intelligent, caring, empathetic, funny (we may have already said that)…. absolutely beautiful people! Come along and see for yourself!
I’ve had DBS. Will there be anyone else in the choir who’s had it?
Yes, we have a number of choir members who have had DBS.
Are there any men in the choir or will I be the only one if I join?
Are you kidding? Our blokes’ section is wonderful, as are the blokes in it! So no, you won’t be the only one.
How old are the choir members?
All ages! Whatever your age, you will never be either too young or too old for us!
And the more, the merrier – which is a great way to phrase how we feel about our membership, given how much we laugh!
What if I can’t come to every rehearsal?
Once you join the New Voice Choir, you make a commitment, both to yourself and to our choir, and we hope to see you – in fact we really look forward to seeing you – each Tuesday.
Of course we understand that sometimes you can’t be there due to planned or unforeseen circumstances such as illness, holidays, special celebrations, and so forth. Whenever possible, just let us know in advance to not expect you in any particular week.