Passavant Singers

Organization Associated with Program
Lutheran SeniorLife (Passavant Retirement Community)
401 S. Main Street
Zelienople, Pennsylvania PA 16063

The Passavant Singers is a chorus us with 30 participants including residents of Lutheran SeniorLife’s Passavant Retirement Community in Zelienople, Pennsylvania as well as staff and members of the broader community. The group meets once a week to practice, and there is a short question-and-answer period before and after each session to encourage members to become socially engaged within the group. The chorus is active from the fall to Memorial Day, preparing for concerts. There are two core concerts each year, at Christmas and in the spring, held at the Passavant Retirement Community. There are numerous other concert opportunities throughout the year, including Memorial Day and Veterans Day. The chorus is entirely volunteer-based and conducted by two residents with extensive background in music.

Program History

Lutheran SeniorLife is a provider of living and healthcare communities for older adults in western Pennsylvania. For over a century, a Christian faith-based ministry has been the cornerstone of the organization’s mission—helping older people live a full and abundant life in a setting that promotes wellness and independence. In addition to residential and assisted living communities, Lutheran SeniorLife provides health and wellness services for older adults, including home healthcare, rehabilitation services, and Alzheimer's care.

The Passavant Singers originated as the brainchild of a Passavant community resident who thought the center would benefit from organizing its own choral group. The resident brought the idea to the enrichment coordinator, who approached and received a commitment from two residents to help direct the group. One resident had an extensive background in directing church choirs, and the second was a skilled pianist. Staff and residents worked together to begin the chorus, which was launched in 2008.

Program Assessments and Evaluations

Lutheran SeniorLife does not conduct a rigorous program evaluation of the Passavant Singers; however, attendance records are kept.

Advice for Other Organizations Conducting Similar Programs

It is essential to find an artist or leader who is willing to commit to the program and has the background and knowledge to lead the group and keep it going. It is important to be patient and create a welcoming atmosphere for all participants.

Kinds of creative engagement/ program focus Presenting a Performance, Participate in a Class
Arts Discipline: Music
Target Audience: Active Adults, Caregivers - Family, Caregivers - Professional, Frail Older Adults, Intergenerational, People with Alzheimer's Disease / Dementia
Adaptive Program Design Cognitive Disabilities
Program Setting: Healthcare - Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC)
Program Service Area: Rural, Suburban
Type of Practice: Promising Practices