Fiona Pritchard is our Music and Arts partner, she supports our homes with their music and arts activities. Here are some Qs and As to help explain a little more:
What do we mean by music and arts activities?
Music and the arts play important and powerful parts in all of our lives so whether it be through storytelling, singing, drama, reading or writing poetry, dance, music and movement, we offer each resident the opportunity to explore the many ways in which music and arts can enrich their wellbeing.
The role has three main elements:
- To spend time with residents in a one-one capacity offering them a live music or arts focused experience and the opportunity to participate, however they prefer or are able.
- To promote and lead participatory music and arts-based activities within homes for small and larger groups, that may have an art, dance, poetry, choral, instrumental, writing and creating focus.
- To develop new relationships with local communities and facilitate collaborations between our homes and schools, churches, museums, theatres, community centres, concert halls, professional arts organisations, national organisations and charities.
The Power of music
Music is incredibly powerful and has a positive effect on our well-being, stimulating our emotions and motivation. It is a common language and enables us to share, appreciate and enjoy this together and because it is non-verbal it is accessible to everyone. Music can also help maintain a person’s identity and a connection to their life events.
Aware of the power of these musical preferences I always try and find out some autobiographical information either through informal conversations and this means I can create a different, personal and hopefully meaningful experience for each resident I spend time with. Group music sessions reach out to any number of residents simultaneously who engage and interact in a variety of ways from passive listening with subtle toe or finger tapping to bold risk taking by playing a large drum or spontaneous dancing. Using different instruments and props we can create music and movements that reflect the rhythm, texture, timbre and style of the music.
You can read more about Fiona’s work in her Blog for the Age of Creativity Festival HERE
Who is Fiona?
Fiona is a professional musician who trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She has performed with several of our national orchestras and enjoyed teaching music for over 25 years. She also writes and arranges music and songs for LETTERLAND, Monkey Music Ltd, Warwick Music, the BBC and ITV.
You can read more about Fiona and her role in this Care Home Professional article
Fiona gained an MSc in Dementia Studies with Arts and Activities from Bradford University and uses this increased understanding of dementia to influence and guide her work Fiona joined Colten Care in 2014 and now in this unique role, she works in all twenty-one homes with a focus in the five dementia communities.
Fiona says: "The role is varied, and I feel it is still evolving, led by the response of residents and new opportunities that arise."