Posted on Nov 25, 2019

Melos Choir and Period Instruments

Elizabeth Cohoe, Angela Stewart, Holly Gwynne-Timothy

Elizabeth Cohoe, Angela Stewart, Holly Gwynne-Timothy, Martin Thomas

Grant Amount: $3,884

The Organization

Melos Choir and Period Instruments performs Early Music (12th - 18th c) using historically informed period performance practices and instruments, develops local skilled singers and instrumentalists of all ages and abilities to tackle challenging and rarely heard music, and is an educational resource for early music within the community for both adults and youth.

The Work Supported by the Grant

The grant enables Melos’ Artistic Director, Holly Gwynne-Timothy, to continue to offer clients of Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario free weekly functional vocal sessions. Side effects of cancer treatments, including surgeries, often inhibit patients' proper vocal functioning. Patients experience weakness, phlegm, and inefficient breathing, causing frustration in speech and singing. Some patients have lung removal or significant throat surgeries, creating chronic difficulties and discomfort in breathing and speech. Holly uses Cornelius Reid's functional vocal methods to alleviate damage by relaxing throat constriction, strengthening vocal muscles, and restoring vocal reflexes. Andrea Gerhardt of Music can Heal, Toronto, shares the work with Holly and brings insight into chant and music therapy.

Once vocal and respiratory function has improved, participants begin singing as a group, and are given the option of performing in Melos' Christmas concert, “In Dulci Jubilo”. While participants will rehearse and perform with us publicly, they will not be identified as "cancer patients" but as “Holly's students from her vocal rehab class.”