It is fun, it is healthy, and it helps build confidence. Singing reduces stress by releasing endorphins and encouraging deep breathing. It has been linked with a lower heart rate and decreased blood pressure. Particularly for seniors, singing in a choir has recorded an average of 30 fewer doctor visits, improved eyesight, fewer cases of depression and fewer falls.
Singing also improves posture and breathing patterns. Singing can boost the immune system by improving lung capacity and energy levels. A study at the University of Frankfurt in Germany found that after singing Mozart's 'Requiem', members of a choir had higher levels of immunoglobulin A and cortisol, which mark higher immunity. The health effects of singing are profound.
The benefits of singing are commonly found in members of choral groups. The Inner Sydney Choral Network is a federation of choirs who rehearse and perform in inner Sydney, and who promote choral singing. Their website has details of choirs in Sydney.
ChorusOz with the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs, gives you the opportunity to perform at the Sydney Opera House without an audition. After a weekend of intensive rehearsals beginners and intermediates can perform with 800 other singers. The website also has details of the opportunity to perform Handel's 'Messiah at Christmas Time'. Or you could try a cappella singing (without instruments) with Honeybees Choir, who sing gospel or gospel-inspired R&B, soul or jazz. Their website also has links to other choirs and sites that promote choral singing.
Or, for those who prefer singing in the comfort of their own home, you can always rent some movies for inspiration. I love singing along to classic movies like The Sound of Music, Singing in the Rain and The Phantom of the Opera. Or you could go see a musical live at the theatre. Or just watch some Glee to get you in the mood.
Whether you are singing classical, gospel, pop, soul, blues, R&B, a cappella, or jazz, at home or on a stage, just sing.