Aveo Cleveland Gardens resident Joyce Kollbaum’s has a star studded background.
A stand up soprano in her own right, Ms Kollbaum sang back up for none other than Frank Sinatra, Pat Boone, Bobby Darrin, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Connie Francis, Wayne Newton and Chubby Checker while living in Las Vegas, Nevada in the 1960s and 70s.
From a young age, Ms Kollbaum says she loved music and performing.
“My mother always had a record player going,” she said, “I tap-danced, twirled a baton, sang and played the accordion. I learned to play the piano and sang in choirs.”
At 18 Ms Kollbaum married a church song-leader in her home town of Cincinnati in Ohio, and the two moved to the sparkling city of Las Vegas.
As a part of this vibrant community, she rubbed shoulders with the likes of Elvis Presley, and can even recall an argument she had when Frank Sinatra criticised her pitching.
“I grabbed my purse and stormed down to him and Sammy Davis in the front row,” she said, “I put my hands on my hips and said, “When you learn to read music, you can tell me how to sing!””.
After divorcing her first husband, Ms Kollbaum trained as a nurse in order to support her three adopted children, but continued to sing in her spare time.
It was in this time of her life that Ms Kollbaum volunteered as a soloist at an electoral rally, where she was introduced to Ronald and Nancy Regan who later invited her to their Inaugural Ball.
The new millennium brought on a world of change for Ms Kollbaum, as she met and married Australian Charles Kollbaum and moved from the United States to Boonah in Queensland.
Here, she was affectionately known as ‘The Yank’, hosting her own radio show as well as several themed nights at the RSL and retirement villages where she sang for the love of it!
In August 2014, she moved into Aveo Cleveland Gardens, where she thrills her friends with recounts of her amazing life.
Ms Kollbaum still greatly enjoys music, and the joy it can bring. Aveo Cleveland Gardens is lucky to have such a star among its ranks.