“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 traveling around India. I spent several years living in an ashram in Rishikesh and learned 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 the 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.”