THE VOICES OF HOPE CHOIRS
Our Voices of Hope choir is a place for people with Parkinson’s, their family members and friends to come together in a community of support, positivity and fun. People with Parkinson’s voices can grow softer, quieter, and less intelligible over time, which detracts from confidence and quality of life. But singing on a regular basis with fellow people with Parkinson’s helps to improve vocal tone and increase volume.
A growing body of research now points to the therapeutic and holistic benefits of choral singing especially for the brain. According to the Sidney De Haan Research Centre at Canterbury University, music therapy and choral singing supports a sense of health and physical well-being, as well as emotional well-being and mood regulation, and social well-being and a sense of belonging for PwPs.
In 2012, Move4Parkinson’s launched our first ever community choir. We had no idea of the amazing journey the choir would take or how powerful singing could be for our emotional and physical well-being. In April 2013 we launched our first single, it reached No.1 in the Irish iTunes R&B charts & achieved more than 10,000 YouTube views. It was also short-listed to the top 12 in a global video competition run by the World Parkinson’s Congress, at the congress in Montreal, the crowd were wowed with a surprise live performance. In November 2013 we were thrilled to perform for the audience at the SEI Awards in Christchurch Cathedral in Dublin (including the President of Ireland).
Members often describe the choir as a place where they don’t have to think about Parkinson’s and are simply accepted for who they are and any symptoms they may have.
There are three choirs, two based in Dublin (Ballaly and Dun Laoghaire) and the third one based in Ashford County Wicklow.