Jonah & the Wailers are one of Sydney's most established community acappella choirs.
We are people from all walks of life, young and old, from all creeds and tribes who are moved to sing together in harmony and create a sense of community and joy. We are a fun, vibrant, and very friendly choir. The repertoire was once largely African American Gospel, however new repertoire includes any genre that touches the humanity in us all. Many members have remained in the choir for over 10 years. Ian's reliability and steadfastness has helped to foster this deep sense of community spirit and friendship.
The Elementals is a smaller auditioned choir and Jonah & the Wailers are a larger choir with a choice of 3 different rehearsal evenings around Sydney. Both choirs are directed by Ian Laurence. The Elementals were formed by Ian in 1993, around 1995 he formed Jonah & the Wailers. Both choirs are acappella (unaccompanied) SATB (soprano, alto, tenor and bass).
Before Ian began his choirs he was working as a film composer - yet he felt a desire to reconnect with people at a more grass roots level. He decided to combine his music skills and his teaching skills to form his first community choir, The Elementals in 1993.
The core music is from the traditional African American gospel spirituals. For Ian this music reflects an immense spiritual strength to overcome adversity and ignite joy, love and community values. The core of his arrangements are from the Gospel genre. Over the last few years, however, Ian has diversified his arrangements to include any uplifting song from anywhere that moves him or are recommended by choir members.
Find out more about the choirs, and how to join, on the choir pages. You can come along to any one or more of the three rehearsal evenings around Sydney which are: Monday at Manly, Tuesday at Leichhardt or Wednesday at North Sydney. All rehearsals run from 7 - 9 pm. Jonah requires no audition, although you do need to be able to sing in tune and hold your own part.