I joined Zingers in November 2014. That year had been a stressful year and I believed that singing would help me to overcome my difficulties. I was recruited by a member despite the fact that I hadn’t sung in a choir or choral group for over 40 years. I was assured that this would not affect my ability to join. Assurance of no necessity to audition played a big part in me taking the first step to joining.
Music has been a thread that has run through my entire life. Singing was a very minor part of it. Brought up in a family where learning a musical instrument for fun was almost expected, I couldn’t be in the school choir. Choir or orchestra were the choices, so I joined a madrigal group and a large Midland choir that was based in a church. We were proud that we sang on Midlands BBC radio on many Sundays.
My professional life was tied with these musical threads. A big part of learning for special needs involves rhythm and sound. Singing is closely link with auditory memory and language. This lead me to investigate these links and I progressed with my career to specialising in Specific Language Difficulties. As Teacher in Charge of a Receptive Language Unit I built music into the daily curriculum and I encouraged my staff to sing not only greetings, and goodbyes, but sections of lessons. Word Rhythms clapped and sung contributed to successful learning. Music was chosen specifically to calm autistic children having a meltdown or following a windy playtime. Music was used as triggers for specific activities. However my singing was never for a wider audience until I joined Zingers.
Zingers offers me FUN, an escape from everyday worries for a couple of hours every week.