“The Marian Grove Groovers were in fine voice when we called in to listen and watch at one of their Friday morning rehearsals. The joy could be heard, not only in their voices but also in the peals of laughter that constantly broke out between the notes.

Maestro Mai Wei Lim didn’t seem at all perturbed by the interruptions however- most probably because she was one of the main laughter leaders! A jaunty rendition of “In the Navy” serenaded our reluctant return to the office. There was certainly no need to ask if the choir enjoyed being back in song after it’s short hiatus.”

Later, we spoke to Ruth Cooper, one of the original members of the group which started up in 2015.

“It’s a wonderful group” says Ruth. “It’s a morning of fun, full of energy and song.  One of the success stories is that one member went home so happy her husband thought about joining- but he’d been told all his life that he couldn’t sing. Mei says’ everybody has a voice and I can help you find it’ – he is now a regular member and of course he did find his voice! “

Ruth had breast cancer and radiation treatment 20 years ago resulting in slight damage to one lung. During some tests in January this year Ruth’s doctor was amazed that despite the damage her lung capacity was better than expected for a  woman her age. “The doctor said you must be doing something” laughs Ruth. “And of course, I am. I’m in Swingfonia, Mei’s other singing group as well as the Groovers. When you do this kind of thing, you learn to sit correctly and breathe correctly. Mei is very caring of the needs of each individual person. So it has all kinds of physical benefits, as well as being fun. The Groovers pay $5 each Friday and we all consider this is a bargain price for the music, her tuition and a morning of enjoyment and relaxation.

One of our members calls it a morning of sheer joy.”