VocaLab Voice Clinic

Client Feature: Jesse Johnson - "A Stroke of Luck"

🌟 Jesse’s Remarkable Journey Featured on Channel 7 News! 🌟

Five years ago, a stroke profoundly changed Jesse’s life, taking away his ability to walk, talk, and swallow. Yet, his indomitable spirit didn’t waver. With the tailored support from VocaLab in 2021, Jesse’s voice found new life.

Today, he’s on a mission to share his transformative journey—from silence to singing—through an upcoming album. Let’s rally behind Jesse and make his musical dream come alive! If you’re moved by his story and wish to support, consider contributing to Jesse’s GoFundMe page here.

Welcome To The VocaLab Voice Clinic

Under the guidance of VocaLab's highly trained Speech Pathologists you can protect your most valuable asset, your voice, and perform at your best every day.

VocaLab Voice Clinic in North Adelaide and online, offers specialised voice therapy and rehabilitation services for singers and speakers experiencing voice disorders, gender-affirming voice training for the LGBTQIA+ community and executive voice coaching for executives looking to improve their vocal impact in boardrooms and presentations. 

Our primary goal at VocaLab is to help our clients create a sustainable, reliable, and confident voice. We accomplish this by:

  • Providing vocal assessment, personalised rehabilitation and therapy sessions tailored to each client’s unique needs and goals.
  • Teaching clients how to monitor and care for their voice to prevent future issues.
  • Equipping clients with effective strategies and techniques for maintaining optimal vocal health.
  • Providing a kind and caring environment for our clients to learn, grow, and try new things with their voice.

Our clinical voice therapy team (Sonia Mohanaraj & Elle Holiday) are dedicated to ongoing professional development and collaboration to ensure that we deliver the highest standard of care. This ensures that no matter which clinician you are working with you can expect to see progress, feel supported throughout the voice therapy process and be embraced by the finest care from our compassionate team. We love voices, we love helping people and we’d love to help you reach your voice goals – Elle & Sonia.

Meet the VocaLab Voice Therapy Team

Elle Holiday (she/her)
Principal Voice Specialising Speech Pathologist, Vocal Massage Therapist, Vocalist & Performer
Adelaide, Australia + Online

Elle Holiday is a voice-specialising Speech Pathologist, vocal massage therapist, singing teacher, choral conductor and singer from Adelaide, South Australia. She holds a Bachelor of Speech Pathology from Flinders University and a Diploma in Jazz Voice from the Elder Conservatorium of Music.

This combination of extensive singing training, teaching and performance experience, paired with her clinical knowledge and practice, allows Elle to offer a specialty, niche package of voice services that have been engaged by reputable Australian and international performers in theatre, television, movies, music, and radio.

Elle has a passion for rehabilitating peoples voices, supporting trans-folk and gender diverse people find and train their authentic voice, reading voice research, educating singing teachers, entrepreneurship and inspiring confidence in others. Elle performs reguarly and teaches a range of vocal styles including: contemporary, musical theatre, gospel, R&B, soul and jazz. Elle completed her Vocal Massage certification in 2023 through ‘Vocal Massage Training’, UK.

Elle is the most recent recipient of the coveted Seven Effect ‘Brain Award’, an award that celebrates the success of women across Australia in Life and Business.

Sonia Mohanaraj (she/her)
Voice Specialising Speech Pathologist, Vocalist & Performer
Adelaide, Australia + Online

Sonia is an experienced Paediatric Speech Pathologist and vocalist from Adelaide, South Australia. She has a kind and approachable nature, advocating for vocal health and confidence and incorporating evidence-based voice therapy as her main priority.

Sonia graduated with a Bachelor of Speech Pathology at Flinders University in 2019 and has been working with ages 0-18 years in the areas of speech, language, literacy, social communication, and fluency. She has a passion for voice, having been classically trained in singing for 5+ years and performs regularly in musical theatre productions.

Sonia believes that every person’s voice is unique and that they should feel empowered to use their voice effectively and safely. By providing an encouraging and supportive environment to do so, she can work with you to create and nurture your own exceptional voice.

Sonia recently performed her ensemble role in the production of ‘Catch Me If You Can’ with Northern Lights Theatre Company.

Do I need a referral to book with VocaLab?

No, you do not need a referral to book, however, VocaLab highly recommends that patients are seen by or are booked in to see an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist or Laryngologist prior to their initial consultation with VocaLab. However, this is not a requirement to book an appointment for voice therapy with VocaLab.

Where to find us?

VocaLab Voice Clinic can be found inside the Prevent Physio & Wellness suite on Level 2, Suite 19, 183 Tynte Street, North Adelaide.

To book your appointment call: (08) 8361 8182 or email admin@prevent.net.au to chat to our friendly staff, or book online from the link below.

EFTPOS and HICAPS facilities available.

If you are attending an initial appointment, please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment to allow time to fill out the necessary forms.

What is a Voice Disorder?

The voice is produced by the interplay between 3 components: breathing, vocal fold vibration and resonance. Air moves from the lungs which helps the vocal folds vibrate and make sound. This sound is then sculpted by the vocal tract (throat, mouth and nasal passages) to create our desired resonant sound quality.

A voice disorder can be caused by a breakdown of a singular component or combination of the above 3 components.

Symptoms of a voice disorder can include:

  • Hoarseness
  • Roughness
  • Breathiness
  • Consistent voice loss
  • Strained voice
  • Weak voice
  • Vocal fatigue
  • Throat pain when speaking
  • Loss of vocal range
  • Pitch instability
  • Chronic cough/throat clearing

Possible causes of the adjacent symptoms, may include:

  • Vocal nodules, polyps or cysts
  • Vocal fold haemorrhage
  • Muscle Tension Dysphonia
  • Spasmodic dysphonia
  • Vocal fold paralysis
  • Laryngitis
  • Reflux
  • Parkinson’s disease and other
  • Neurologic disorders
  • Laryngeal cancer
  • Difficulty breathing

Alongside voice therapy at VocaLab, an evaluation of your vocal folds by an ENT (Ear Nose and Throat specialist) or Laryngologist is highly encouraged for a professional voice user. This documents the functioning of your vocal folds, investigates potential issues and provides VocaLab with a diagnosis of your voice, which helps guide your VocaLab treatment plan. An ENT evaluation can be organised through your GP.

Who can benefit from Voice Assessment and Therapy?

Anyone with voice issues! Voice therapy and assessment at VocaLab are designed to help a wide range of individuals experiencing vocal challenges. Whether you’re a professional voice user or someone who’s noticed changes in your voice, our services can offer significant benefits:
  1. Individuals Experiencing Vocal Fatigue: If you find your voice getting tired easily, or you struggle with voice production, especially after long use, our therapy can help.
  2. People Facing Voice Strain in Noisy Environments: If background noise makes it hard for you to speak and be heard, leading to social discomfort, our assessment can identify ways to improve your vocal clarity.
  3. Variability in Vocal Pitch: If your voice pitch fluctuates unexpectedly or you find it hard to control your pitch range, we can assist in stabilizing and enhancing your vocal control.
  4. Symptoms of Throat Discomfort: Experiencing throat issues like a sensation of a lump, frequent throat clearing, or increased mucus can impact your voice. Our specialists can help address these symptoms.
  5. Weak or Breathless Voice Quality: A voice that sounds feeble or airy, especially noticeable during conversations or phone calls, can be strengthened through our targeted voice therapy.
  6. Persistent Cough or Breathing Difficulties: If you’re dealing with ongoing cough, sensitivity to coughing, or voice and breathing issues related to conditions like VCD or LSN, our team can provide tailored support.
  7. Voice Changes Due to Neurological Conditions: Those with neurodegenerative conditions like Parkinson’s, MS, or ALS can benefit from our specialized voice therapy to maintain and improve speech clarity.
  8. Vocal Fold Growths: If you have nodules, cysts, or polyps on your vocal cords, our assessment and therapy can help in managing and potentially improving your voice quality.
  9. Educators and Teachers: Teachers facing challenges like a sore throat, reduced voice loudness, or gradual voice weakening will find our services particularly beneficial.
  10. Post-Thyroid Surgery Vocal Changes: Those experiencing vocal changes due to thyroid issues, either before or after surgery, can find support and improvement through our therapy.
  11. Performance Artists: Actors and singers struggling with voice projection, maintaining vocal quality, or limited pitch range can greatly benefit from our specialized voice care.
  12. Professionals Relying on Their Voice: If your job demands extensive voice use and you’re seeking to improve and protect your vocal endurance, our training and therapy are ideal

What happens in Voice Therapy?

The goal of voice therapy is to improve your voice to meet your vocal needs through guided changes in vocal behaviours and lifestyle changes. Voice therapy is a partnership between you, your GP, Laryngologist, and your Speech Pathologist. It consists of a variety of tasks designed to reduce or eliminate harmful vocal behaviours, shape sustainable vocal behaviours, and assist in vocal fold wound healing after surgery or injury. Voice therapy for hoarseness generally consists of one to two therapy sessions each week for 4–8 weeks over 2-3 months (Hapner et al., 2009). 

However, the duration of therapy is determined by the origin of the voice disorder and severity of the problem, co-occurring medical therapy, and, importantly, patient commitment to the practice and generalisation of new vocal behaviours outside the therapy session (Behrman, 2006). Attending your therapy sessions, completing your home assignments, and taking control of your vocal environment is important to achieving the best outcomes. Your commitment to home practice will make a difference in how fast you complete therapy and how successful your therapy outcomes are. We understand that life is busy, so we work with you to schedule sessions as conveniently as possible with your other life commitments. 

Are Speech Therapy and Voice Therapy the same thing?

Speech Therapy is a term that encompasses a variety of therapies, including voice therapy. Most insurance companies refer to voice therapy as ‘speech therapy’ but they are the same service, if provided by a Speech Pathologist.

Executive Voice Coaching

In the dynamic landscape of corporate leadership, effective communication is not only about the words spoken, but also about how they are delivered. This is where Executive Voice Coaching becomes indispensable for CEOs, board members, and executives. The ability to convey ideas with confidence, resonance, and authority can significantly influence leadership impact and organisational success. VocaLab’s tailored voice coaching program addresses this critical need with expertise and precision, offering a holistic approach that encompasses the nuances of vocal modulation, clarity, and engaging presentation.

For Singers & Professional Voice Users

VocaLab offers a specialised voice rehabilitation service for singers & professional voice users (e.g. actors, teachers, lawyers) who rely their voice for their livelihood. 
VocaLab provides therapy and ongoing assessment for the voice issues listed below:

  • Raspy, hoarse, rough or weak voice
  • Muscle Tension Dysphonia
  • Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD)
  • Exercise Induced Laryngeal Obstruction (EILO)
  • Vocal fold nodules
  • Vocal fold paresis/paralysis
  • Vocal fold polyp
  • Vocal fold scarring
  • Vocal fatigue
  • Vocal fold hemorrhage
  • Presbyphonia (aging voice)
  • Laryngeal muscle strain or stiffness
  • Chronic cough, tickle or feeling of constant phlegm or lump in the throat
  • Pain when singing/speaking
  • Difficulty controlling pitch
  • Loss of power
  • Loss of range

For Transgender Clients

The voice can be an important part of gender affirmation for trans and gender diverse people.

Voice training can help change or expand your vocal register and range. This is sometimes called ‘masculinising’ or ‘feminising’ one’s voice. Please note these terms are used to describe directional voice changes, and not genders. Voice training will also help you achieve a voice that is comfortable and sustainable.

Our voice is made up mostly of muscles. This means we can strengthen, stretch, and train them to achieve our desired sound. VocaLab voice training works to reach your voice goals by establishing functional and sustainable:

  • Pitch
  • Articulation
  • Voice quality
  • Inflection
  • Tone
  • Style

What to Expect During Gender-Affirming Voice Training

A typical session would involve practice of voice techniques, discussion of voice goals and home practice, learning to care for your voice and role-play situations. The program is tailored to each individual’s specific needs for voice therapy.

The expected outcomes of therapy include improvements in voice health and quality and improved ease of using a voice that is more in line with your gender identity across various settings.

You are provided with techniques to maintain the health of your voice, as we later embark on therapy targeting areas such as communication patterns and easily accessible pitch and resonance that allow the client to produce an efficient voice that is more in line with their gender identity. How long it takes to reach your ideal voice varies

Consistent home practice of techniques is important in maintaining and facilitating progress towards voice goals.

Accessibility to Voice Therapy

In Australia, you can access up to five Medicare rebated speech therapy sessions per calendar year, which includes a $56.00 rebate back from Medicare, per session. To access an EPC, you will first need to speak to you GP. However, you are welcome to book in for Voice Training with VocaLab without an EPC as well.

To book a consultation with VocaLab or to speak to our friendly staff about what you might need, click here.

If you are looking for more resources on South Australian Transgender healthcare providers or services, please head over to the Trans Health SA website. They provide wonderful, community-driven resources and support for the SA Trans community.  


Behrman, A. (2006). Facilitating behavioral change in voice therapy: The relevance of motivational interviewing. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 15, 215–225.

Hapner, E. R., Portone-Maira, C., & Johns, M. M. (2009). A study of voice therapy dropout. Journal of Voice, 23, 337–340.