Your Brain and Singing: Why Singing in a Choir Makes You Happier

The following is an edited excerpt from an article* published by Choral Director Magazine, Author Jaime Babbitt

Any of us who have sung in choirs know all too well the joy it brings not just the audience, but also the choir members themselves. The power, the mojo that this (relatively) small time commitment offers…how is it possible?

Endorphins release and interact with opiate receptors in the brain, diminishing pain and triggering almost an  analgesic feeling in the body. Our brains get an endorphin “rush” and singing can also release dopamine, a chemical that works to help regulate the brain’s pleasure and reward centres. Music has been found to release serotonin that helps regulate our moods, social behaviours and appetite; other studies have shown that cortisol levels can be lowered and that singing may increase prolactin production which helps regulate the immune system. A study of a senior singer’s choral group showed that the singers suffered less depression, made fewer doctor’s visits each year, needed less medication and increased their other activities. 

The most remarkable phenomenon that a choir vocalist experiences are the many “take your breath away” moments that come as a result of being one of many voices coming together in harmony. While we strive to be the best choristers we can be, our voices don’t have to be “professional strength” to derive these myriad health benefits. According to a 2005 study, singing, even at an amateur level, is beneficial to people’s emotional, physical and cognitive well-being.

So please, sing. Sing a song. Sing out loud. Sing out strong.

AND, we’d most especially love it if you joined the Craig Bay Choristers to do so! 

It was so great to have welcomed a number of new members to our first rehearsal of the spring session last week and if you’re noodling about joining us or sitting in on a rehearsal it’s not too late…Tuesday 1:30-3:30 in the Conservatory!


*Click on the following link for the complete article: