From the opera theatre to the operating theatre

Student, Meredith Cheng is raising money for the Canberra Hospital Foundation with an original composition.

Written by Barb Corapi

Meredith Cheng is a woman of many talents. She plays the piano and violin, she is a classically trained opera singer, and she writes her own music and lyrics.

If that’s not enough, she’s also a student in the Doctor of Medicine and Surgery program.

“When I was younger, I definitely thought about a career in performance. Music and singing has always been integrated in my life. My mum often recounts that I loved to sing ‘My Favourite Things’ around the house when I was only two years old.”

For a while, Meredith was on track for a career as an opera singer. During high school she participated in musical theatre and took voice lessons. When her application to undergraduate medicine was unsuccessful, she completed a music degree at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, which enhanced her appreciation and love of singing.

“Medicine was always in the back of mind. The truth is, the practicalities of an opera career were not aligned with my core value of family first. I’d heard from mentors about hectic international travel schedules and the inability to be with family. While medicine is also notorious for posing challenges to the work-life balance, I believe it offers much greater flexibility overall.”

Now that Meredith’s career path is set towards medicine, she vows to ensure that music remains an integral part of her life.

Her decision to participate in the CAN GIVE DAY Singing Competition to raise funds for the Canberra Hospital Foundation is a good start. Her original song entry and her donation tally have placed her in the top 8 of the leader board.

“The competition is an opportunity to demonstrate my creative ideas and show my true voice. It’s why I decided to perform an original song for my audition video. The fundraising aspect was the incentive I needed to fully commit to this project. It’s a great cause and it nicely wraps together my love of music with my passion for medicine.”

With the interest (and donations) that Meredith’s CAN GIVE DAY entry is generating, hopefully the competition is a launching pad for many more musical endeavours.

“I hope to become more involved in the Canberra music scene, connecting with like musicians and finding more performing opportunities to balance out my medical studies. Whether I win or not, I will have raised a significant amount for the Canberra Hospital Foundation, and that alone would be a victory for me.”

Help Meredith Realise Her Goal

For Meredith to make it to the finals of the CAN GIVE Singing competition she needs to be placed in the top 8. Her place is based on the quality of the performance and the audience reach (please like), and donations (please give).

Donate now. Finalists are announced on 26 October.