SING ALONG: Chelmer Roots plays the piano at Wahroonga last week.
SING ALONG: Chelmer Roots plays the piano at Wahroonga last week. Vanessa Jarrett

Chelmer has passion for sharing her music

EVERY Wednesday Chelmer Roots heads to Wahroonga to sing and play music.

"I just like making people happy,” she said. "They all enjoy my singing.”

It is something the volunteering lady has done for the past 34 years.

"I first started out singing by myself for two hours every week with a little portable organ that used to belong to one of the residents,” she said.

"Eventually I got some more people to come along and sing.”

Over the years Chelmer has made a number of friends and lost some along the way as well.

"I sort of feel a part of the place now,” she said.

"It's very sad, you know when people go to dementia.”

Wahroonga celebrated its 35th birthday last week and Chelmer has been visiting the centre for all but one year of that time.

"It has grown, they have the special needs unit now and a lot of people around town come and have an outing here,” she said.

Chelmer's real passion lies in the music.

"I always used to like playing dinner music,” she said. "I play some of the older music from the days when I used to go dancing.

"The 1950s, 40s, some music from the old wars, 30s, 40s, 60s, 70s.”

Each week Chelmer plays a variety of music with the chicken dance as the final song.

"They like the older music and some of the Australian music, the old popular songs,” she said.

"Some of them like country and western.

"I can shut my eyes and play whatever music.”

When Chelmer isn't busy volunteering at Wahroonga, she also spends her time helping out with other local organisations.

"I have been in the CWA since 1961, Probus, Historical Society and I play for weddings, churches and schools,” she said.

"I've always been available for anyone.”