Choir for the Memory-Impaired

Jane Stump

There are 70 choirs for the memory-impaired all over the world. Vista de la Montana Methodist Church at 3002 E. Miravista Ln. in Tucson will be number 71.

Hoping to clarify cultural misconceptions regarding those whose short-term memory is compromised and increase the quality of life of the memory-impaired and their caregivers, the church has created The Vista Song of Joy Chorus.

The chorus will consist of 10-15 memory-impaired members and their spouses or other caregivers along with members of the chorus team. The group will meet for two hours one afternoon a week for a period of eight weeks. The first part will be a social time with snacks. Following, the chorus will practice long time favorites such as: “I’ll Be Seeing You,” “You Belong to Me,” and “Down By the Old Mill Stream.” At the end of the eight-week session, the chorus will present a gala community concert.

There is no charge for the program.

It is becoming well known that although short term memory is quite limited for some, their long-term memory is remarkably intact. Music is a very effective stimulant of long-term memory and offers comfort, joy, and pleasure. The chorus gives the memory-impaired a chance to feel like themselves again, to bring joy to others through song, as well as experience happiness at being and working in a chorus with others.

Caregivers are often tired, isolated, depressed, and lonely. Participation in the chorus gives them an opportunity to be with people who understand. They are able to learn about the non-pharmaceutical therapy of music and enjoy the fellowship of a loving community.

We are in the process of recruiting memory-impaired folk and their spouses or caregivers for our 2020 session. Singing skills or talent is not required. Please contact: Dr. Jane Stump, Director, Vista Song of Joy Chorus, at [email protected] for questions or to sign up.