AFTER busking around Australia for three years, raising money for Lifeline, Murray Mandel, a retired man from Sydney with profound deafness, will finish his fundraising tour in Canberra, where he started.
Over the past few years, Murray, who never let his hearing loss get in the way of learning to play guitar, has performed 393 performances across Australia, and has raised almost $70,000 for Lifeline.
Murray started his fundraising journey after hearing about the mental health crisis in Australia.
“I thought I would like to participate in reaching out and reminding as many fellow Australians as possible about Lifeline,” Murray says.
He decided he would use music to remind people of Lifeline but has much difficulty understanding what a singer is singing.
“When I retired five years ago I happened to be living in Mildura and one evening a local man joked with me that I could play my guitar at his niece’s award-winning restaurant,” Murray says
“I only knew one piece of guitar music, but I thought it would be interesting and challenging so I began an incredible journey.
“I started off practising and researching almost everyday for four to seven hours.
“Twelve months later I ended up having my professional debut in that restaurant.”
Murray hopes that the public will find his “soothing” guitar music enjoyable. He will be busking at Westfield Belconnen from February 12 to 16, South.Point Tuggeranong from February 20 to 23, Riverside Plaza from February 27 to 29 and Canberra Centre from March 5 to 7 and March 9, before finishing up his three-year fundraising journey.
If you or someone you know needs help or support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or in an emergency phone 000.