Transforming Communities

Tones and Shades – LMN North East partners with Nottingham's City Arts in combined arts deliver for older people in care

Live Music Now and Nottingham's City Arts have formed a partnership to deliver a 20 week combined music and arts residency programme in a care home for older people in Nottinghamshire.The programme is funded by Nottinghamshire County Council.

The sessions began last week in Abbeyfields, Millbeck House in Arnold, a suburb of Nottingham, and run through December. LMN musicians and City Arts artists will faciltiate participatory performances and workshops in a variety of musical genres and medium including creative writing/storytelling, animation, dance, carnival visual arts and dance.

Residents will collaborate to design the second half of the programme, selecting the artists and musicians they'd most like to work with.

'Our long term approach, actively engaging participants in music, stimulates responses that can have a profound and lasting effect. Not only do we regularly see extraordinary responses from our beneficiaries to this approach, but their reactions can provide their carers with insight into how they can continue to stimulate, communicate and engage with individual.' Deborah Welch, Live Music Now

Last week creative write Dave Wood and LMN musicians Bright Season joined together to facilitate sessions with residents at Millbeck House.


What a warm welcome we received at Millbeck House! We played some of our favourite folk tunes and songs from the UK, Ireland, France and Scandinavia, discussed the differences between the music from different countries, and even did an impromptu dance demonstration. Ella's Swedish nyckelharpa made an appearance, along with the fiddle, accordion and voices. The final song, Danny Boy, was definitely a highlight with the whole room singing together.' Bright Season

'Residents stretched their imaginations to create and act out a completely fresh story about Robin Hood through the process of Instant Theatre (invented by Word and Action founder, RG Gregory). All kinds of parts needed representing; participants played Friar Tuck, the sword of aid Marian, the (imaginary) chips, the rabbit and the powerful sun, to name but a few.' Dave Wood

Residents from Millbeck House clearly enjoyed the experience:

"It was original, never known anything about it before, it made you use this [brain] and you don't usually. It was very good."

"[I enjoyed] the originality of it, the whole thing from beginning to end, how it links from one thing to the next thing and yet although you moved on a bit the bit previous wasn't left out, it got bigger and bigger and bigger. It was very clever I found it very stimulating."

"[I enjoyed] that it involved all of us because we all live here together and it's nice to have a chat…and that [the story] was from years ago."

"I enjoyed all of it, it was a good laugh".

Forthcoming sessions will be faciltiated by animator Martin Sommerville and LMN ensemble Katie's Allsorts. We will keep you updated with progress!


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