Music therapy group enjoys celebrations and calls for new participants

PUBLISHED: 17:00 08 August 2020

Participants received cake on their doorstep thanks to Saffron Hall volunteers who travelled across counties. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.

Participants received cake on their doorstep thanks to Saffron Hall volunteers who travelled across counties. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.

Saffron Hall

People living with dementia joined with friends and family online as part of the Together in Sound project, to celebrate and share music.

The summer celebrations saw participants sharing songs they had written with family, friends and volunteers. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.The summer celebrations saw participants sharing songs they had written with family, friends and volunteers. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.

The participants shared songs they had written with the audience, ate cake delivered by Saffron Hall volunteers across Herfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Essex, and enjoyed listening to a live virtual performance from local folk duo, Honey & Bear.

One of the songs performed by participants online in front of loved ones and volunteers is called ‘The Virus Blues’, and remembered those who were no longer able to take part.

Claire Molyneux, senior lecturer in Music Therapy at Anglia Ruskin University and sessions leader, said: “This has been such a challenging time and it is a privilege to be part of Together in Sound and to play a role in enabling participants to stay connected and support each other.

“The highlight for me was hearing our participants sing their original songs that reflected on the experiences of living through lockdown. Music therapy truly has a unique role to play in helping us all to make sense of these changing times we are living through.”

Local folk duo, Honey & Bear, provided a live virtual performance. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.Local folk duo, Honey & Bear, provided a live virtual performance. Photo: Supplied by Saffron Hall.

Thomas Hardy, learning and participation director at Saffron Hall, said: “Our sharing events are always a special celebration of everything that Together in Sound is about, and with the help of our wonderful volunteers, cakes from Bitesize Bakery and with friends and family able to join us in the virtual audience, we were able to bring everyone together at the end of a very different term for Together in Sound.

He added: “We will continue online in the Autumn - applications are now open for new participants who may wish to join us then, and hope that we will be meeting back together face to face very soon.”

Together in Sound is a partnership project run by Saffron Hall and the Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy Research at Anglia Ruskin University which provides opportunities for music therapy to people living with dementia. Since the lockdown, music therapy sessions have continued taking place online using video conferencing software.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Saffron Walden Reporter. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Saffron Walden Reporter