Transforming Communities

Section Contents

Reflective Practice

Do what works for you and your team.

Musicians should take time to reflect after each session in a comfortable and personalised way e.g. with notebooks, journals, personal diaries, digital templates, and voice memos. 

The following may help guide musicians to reflect on what happened and what effect the music had on the patients.

About yourself
  • What worked?
  • What didn’t work?
  • What have I learnt?
  • What could I improve?
  • How do I feel?
About the patients
  • How did the patient engage?
  • How did the patient respond? (positive/negative indicators)
  • How did the family engage?
Feedback forms
Team meetings and peer support
  • Share your experiences and skills.


Consider yourself as a whole: physically, mentally and emotionally

These recommendations are informed by what the Minds Matter musicians learnt from their experiences, and what they found helpful in coping with the (often intense) hospital environment.

Professional space

Do a check list on yourself:

  • Where am I at today (emotionally and physically)?
  • Do I need to do anything for myself right now in order to help myself to run a good session?
  • What are my boundaries?
  • Share your experiences and creative practice with your team.
  • Connect more with peers and avoid being isolated.
  • Remain aware of your personal growth and achievements.
  • Learn to recognize that things don’t always go right.
  • Learn from challenging experiences.
  • Manage your time: find time for what’s important and learn how to say “no”.
Personal space     
  • Take time to unwind and reflect.
  • Relax and let go. The hospital environment can be intense. On the days you deliver a session, make sure you allow yourself time to do nothing, breathe or daydream.
  • Organise your timetable of activities and working space.
  • Exercise and plan outdoor activities.
  • Do things that you find fun and have a laugh.
  • Never hesitate to ask.

The Team  

Meet some of the Live Music Now musicians currently delivering music activities in Alder Hey.

Georgina Aasgaard

Georgina is a cellist and music and health practitioner who has a passion for bringing music from the concert hall to a variety of social and health settings including mental health units, hospitals, prisons and community centres. Georgina has been Musician in Residence at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital for 15 years, where she created a training and mentoring programme for Live Music Now Musicians.  

Sarah Austen

Sarah is a multi-instrumentalist based in Manchester with a Masters Degree in Saxophone (Royal Northern College of Music). Sarah is passionate about music in community outreach work.  As a member of the quartet, Chameleon, she brings performances and workshops to schools and hospitals. Sarah also has Dalcroze training which she puts into practice in her teaching approach.

Esme Bridie

Esme is a singer-songwriter and guitarist, creating raw and honest songs with intricate guitar lines and emotive vocals. Esme performs gigs in venues across the country as well as working as a music facilitator in a variety of settings.

Pip Bryan

Pip is a flautist and singer with a background in both classical and folk music. She is an experienced music practitioner and directs Rise Music Education CIC which delivers a variety of community music projects. Pip is passionate about music and its unique capacity for bringing people together, as well as the many health-related benefits it can provide.

Elfair Grug Dyer

Elfair is a classically trained harpist from Wales. Elfair’s work as a Live Music Now artist has led to her passion for working as a music practitioner in health settings, sharing the harp and its wonderful qualities with new listeners in different environments.

Eleanor Mills

Eleanor is a freelance musician trained at the Royal Northern College of Music. As a bassoonist, clarinettist, and saxophonist, she’s an avid performer, outreach leader and music for health practitioner. She has a passion for increasing the accessibility of music. Eleanor loves seeing how profoundly music can change the mood of patients and families during sessions at the hospital.

Hedi Pinkerfeld

Hedi is a guitar and bass player with a background in jazz and popular music. He loves making and exploring music with those children and adults who are most in need of the empowering, joyful, expressive, and healing qualities that music can offer.

Ben Sayah

Ben is a guitarist working as music practitioner for organisations including Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, Live Music Now and Brighter Sound. Ben is passionate about using music with people of all ages and backgrounds to promote transformative experiences, connection, and self-expression. He has toured internationally with award-winning ensemble Kabantu and has recently completed a Masters Degree in music therapy.

Jess Tomlinson

Jess is a clarinettist and saxophonist based in Manchester. She is passionate about creating exciting, accessible, and engaging performances and has an active freelance career as a performer, musician in residence and workshop leader.