Ian visits The Transformer's choir in Australia, they're just like us!

Ian with The Transformer choir from Australia

Back in March, whilst on a trip visiting family in Australia, I was lucky enough to spend the day with a choir called The Transformers in Brisbane, Queensland. A choir like ours on the other side of the world? I wanted to find out more by going to meet them in person.

I wanted to see and hear if our choirs had anything in common and I figured that talking to the members, volunteers and staff was the best way to do that… Especially as having a natter is something we love doing at CwNN! When I first arrived, I was a little nervous and self-conscious, but the Transformers' warmth and friendliness put my mind at ease. It felt like I'd known them all for ages – until I realised that was because they reminded me of going to choir back at home! I was almost overwhelmed by a feeling of connection between us all across the land and sea.

The session ran in a really similar way to a CwNN evening, albeit in the morning. We sang together, joked together and finally had lunch together – which gave me the perfect chance to ask them: 'What things would you never want to change about your choir?' Well, that simple question opened up the conversation floodgates and it was a hoot. Although there were many variations, these were the five most common elements (in no particular order):
1. Passion before perfection
2. Inclusivity
3. Equality
4. Great volunteers making great food
5. Creativity!
It seems that our choirs, although so far apart (10,262 miles, in fact), aren't so different at all! At the core of both choirs are the same values, the feelings of togetherness and the camaraderie that help to keep our awesome singing communities strong. 

So here's a huge thank to The Transformers for their open-mindedness and generous hospitality, which have laid the foundations of friendship between us. I hope that we can show one (or more!) of The Transformers how we do things at Choir with No Name one day!

For more info on The Transformers here's their website: http://www.wearethetransformers.org/