When Ben is not practicing or teaching medicine, he can be found socialising with fellow classmates at AAH sharing a love of harmony singing.
“Currently I have two jobs, I’m a GP within a surgical practice where I help with operations and see patients before and after surgery, and I teach medical students at the University of Notre Dame two days per week.
My singing journey started in year 11 when I joined a 12-person vocal ensemble, I couldn’t believe how fun it was! Somehow after school I let singing slide, only returning to it at the age of about 39 (I'm in my mid 40s now). I joined a community choir and then tried another choir as well.
A couple of years ago, some friends and I formed a 6-person group to compete in the Australian A Cappella Championships, we had a ball!
I have seen The Idea of North live a couple of times and attended a couple of their workshops so when I saw on social media that Naomi was starting a harmony school, I made sure I attended the open day. I ended up joining with a couple of friends.
After a term, I thought I’d dive in. I was impressed by the experience, reputation and skill of Naomi - as well as her friendly stage persona. I was looking to take things to a more polished level and mix with high quality singers.
I really look forward to Wednesday night classes, there is a sense of exhilaration singing in small groups and being solely responsible for your part. The skills section of rehearsals is something new for me and it's very interesting and challenging.
It is necessary to feel slightly at sea to get big improvements in any skill, but the atmosphere is very encouraging, friendly and fun. Everybody has their moments of vulnerability (and perhaps glory too) - so we are all in the same boat.
It’s lovely meeting other people who share a similar interest in harmony singing. It’s a very easy way to get to know people. It happens very quickly as every rehearsal is loaded with ice-breaking activities.
I can’t think of a better next step for choir members or solo singers looking for a new challenge. Nor can I think of any person better to lead and teach than the musical director of Australia’s only professional a cappella group.
I plan to keep up my choir participation - which is also wonderful. This is the extra icing on the singing cake.”