Jo took up her new role just last week and says of her first rehearsal, “It went really great.”
Jo has big plans for the choir and one of those is to get it up and running as soon as possible to entertain the citizens of Bundaberg.
Jo has lived in Bundaberg for the last 15 years after moving from Melbourne with her musician husband Peter Knight.
She became one of the area's busiest singing teachers, with students travelling from as far as Agnes Water, Childers, Gin Gin and Tiaro.
Jo was trained herself by many outstanding singing teachers including Jonathan Welch OAM who conducted The Choir of Hard Knocks.
During her halcyon days of the eighties and nineties, Jo fronted some of Melbourne’s top cover bands which supported the likes of Concrete Blonde, John Paul Young and Renee Geyer at Melbourne clubs like Billboard and The Palais at St. Kilda.
Now her stage is the community venues of Bundaberg, bringing joy to our local residents and making sure the choir has as much fun as possible.
Jo is no stranger to working with people with a disability as she has taught many in one-on-one sessions, but hadn't yet tackled the challenge of a whole choir.
“Singing brings them out of themselves,” she said, “and they can't hide their joy.”
“Most people when they sing are reserved or self-conscious, but they don't care what people think and their joy is infectious. And everyone loves a singalong.”
Jo plans to incorporate more hand movements and subtle choreography into the performance.
Currently they are working on 'Crazy little thing called love' and 'Eye of the Tiger' and with the latter she will encourage them to punch the air and make other movements that will bring the song alive.
“It's going to be fun,” she said.
“We'll work it out together, and grow together as we do. It's a great opportunity for them to shine.”
The IMPACT Community Choir has been shining since 2011 and consists of a range of different people from varied organisations and of all abilities who love to sing.
Our choir members are people with a disability or psychosocial barrier, support workers, volunteers and IMPACT staff, and has performed at local aged care facilities, community groups and events.
If you love to sing and would like to join in please phone 4153 4233 and ask to speak with our NDIS department. If you'd like to invite the choir to perform at your venue or next event, go to https://impact.org.au/support-and-wellbeing/disability-mental-health/community-choir/