Innovate To Integrate

With the Paralympics only a month away, and Wimbledon’s Para Championship starting today, I remembered Paraorchestra, an ensemble I heard of recently for the first time, and thought I would focus my blog post on this. Paraorchestra was founded ten years ago by Charles Hazlewood, with the goal of integrating disabled musicians further into theContinue reading “Innovate To Integrate”

Creative Company

Maybe one of the main ways music, art and nature can boost wellbeing is by drawing people together, creating common ground to share. This can help combat loneliness: and this is Loneliness Awareness Week (14-18 June). This year’s theme is Acceptance, highlighting that everyone feels lonely sometimes. The idea is that by talking more openlyContinue reading “Creative Company”

A Step In Time

Ballet might seem to be more about movement than music, but music is clearly integral to ballet’s impact: so it’s the latest music genre I’m exploring in my occasional series on why different styles of music might boost wellbeing in different ways. One genre I recently focused a blog post on was musicals, songs fromContinue reading “A Step In Time”

One Year On

Last Tuesday’s national Day Of Reflection set me thinking again about this last crazy year and how I for one have seen positives emerge in amidst all the darkness. Positives like people turning to nature, to music and to creativity in their droves, painting, drawing and crafting. Sometimes this has helped distract us, liberated usContinue reading “One Year On”

All Singing, All Dancing

By their sheer exuberance, musicals transport us to a different world. What specific impact do they have on health and wellbeing, maybe more than other music genres? I hope this will be the first in an occasional series within Medley’s regular blog posts, exploring how and why different music genres have particular impacts on us.Continue reading “All Singing, All Dancing”

A New Song

When I told someone that I would be writing about singing, music and Parkinson’s Disease, she asked: “But why would music help Parkinson’s?” And her response struck me, because it’s true that the part music can play in many illnesses is far less well known than, say, its impact on dementia. Through recent years soContinue reading “A New Song”

Shared Or Unique?

Music has great power as a unifying force. Songs and music create a shared vocabulary to draw on as they become a common experience. But while music builds community, its impact on us is also highly personal: I might respond to a song very differently to you. These two distinct impacts music has on usContinue reading “Shared Or Unique?”

Freedom Through Music

How can the ability to improvise music survive the onset of dementia? On one level, Four Notes is the story of one man’s musical imagination, even as he lives with dementia. But on another level it could reveal more about improvisation’s specific scope for music for wellbeing across different situations. You are probably familiar withContinue reading “Freedom Through Music”