Song Writing and Performance Workshops

Quest News Feature

As featured in the the Quest Commmunity Newspaper on the 28 July 2015 by :

Whoopee Do Crew enables disabled people to tell their story through writing and performing their own songs

QUEST photo

Whoopee Do Crew workshop facilitator Tom Smith with participants Maureen and Keith at Gailes Community House — Picture: Richard Walker

Disability support worker Tom Smith always had a love of music and now he helps people with disabilities write and perform their own songs.

After seeing just how much his clients responded to music, Mr Smith decided to start a music workshop, named Whoopee Do Crew, for the able and disabled alike.

He has started the free workshop at Gailes Community Centre every Tuesday, along with others in West End.

Through music, Mr Smith helps members tell their personal story.

“You might have had some things happen to you that might be hard to talk about, but if you talk about it and make it into a story, it’s something that becomes separate from you,” Mr Smith said.

“It doesn’t define you, it’s just something that’s happened to you and it’s something you can use as an opportunity to make links with other people.

“(The songs are) a really fun way for people to celebrate who they are.”

Mr Smith said Whoopee Do Crew had members of all walks of life, from a retired man who just likes to jam, to some with mental health issues and those with disabilities like Down syndrome. He said once they even had a deaf girl join in.

“I wondered what she would get from it but she just loved being in the group and feeling the rhythm.”

To join Whoopee Do Crew, just rock up to Gailes Community House at midday on Tuesdays, or contact 3879 3004.