I have been looking for some way to give back to the community and I have found it in my much-loved community choir.
It is really good therapy for me to meet so many different and wonderful people – people who are homeless or who have a disability or who are recovering from depression and other illnesses. People who have businesses and big jobs and office workers…
I was born in Sri Lanka and lived in a small village. During college in India I used to take my guitar and go out to the lake to sing songs by myself.
I have always been passionate about music and sing a lot – in those days it was Tom Jones, Englebert Humperdinck and The Beatles. I still do a great rendition of Please Release Me!
After a strict Catholic upbringing I left college in my early 20s and went travelling around India. I spent several years living in an ashram in Rishikesh and learnt yoga and meditation from spiritual leaders.
I also walked through the Himalayas, sleeping in temples and meditating lots, and taught English to young monks in a Buddhist monastery.
In 1989 I met and married Deb in Goa, where I was teaching yoga and meditation, and moved to Australia. We have two beautiful children, Alex and India Rose.
I absolutely love being part of With One Voice Sydney.
I have met so many people from all walks of life. Even my daughter’s school principal comes to choir! Every Tuesday I look forward to seeing my friends and singing together and bringing happiness to us all.
I talk to the other participants and they have gone through so many hard things in their lives. Their stories really move me.
Singing is something that comes from the heart – it is good for the soul! You don’t have to have a good voice. It comes naturally. Singing with my friends makes me feel very happy.
At choir I’m in a different world, completely. It’s amazing.