Together in Sound: A Journey with Dementia is a film created by a group of individuals who currently and previously participated in Together in Sound – a music therapy project for people living with dementia and their companions run in partnership by Saffron Hall Trust and Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy Research at Anglia Ruskin University.
Together in Sound music therapy groups aim to bring the power of music to those living with dementia and their companions. This long-running project focuses on joint music-making and listening with a goal of supporting communication, relationships, and increasing quality of life through a collaborative group process. Film–maker Holly Cassidy joined the group to help create a film to show the process and impact of Together in Sound for participants and their loved ones. The project was filmed in Spring 2020 – before and during lockdown. The film was funded by a grant from the Research and Innovation Collaboration Fund from the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, at Anglia Ruskin University and is part of a research project exploring the impact of group music therapy for people living with dementia and their companions
Chief Executive, Saffron Hall Trust, Angela Dixon said: “Together in Sound has become of vital lifeline for members of our community over the last couple of years. We are delighted that our participants felt they could share their experience and stories with a wider audience. We hope this film demonstrates the impact of the project and how music and the arts can not only play an important part in the wellbeing of people living with dementia and their carers, but also be a valuable source of training and experience for the professional musicians that engage with it.”
Director Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy, Anglia Ruskin University, Prof Helen Odell-Miller OBE said: “Together in Sound, in addition to benefiting the participants as the film so clearly demonstrates, also adds to the international research base in this field. The innovative music therapy groups engage people living with dementia and their companions, which enables new possibilities for music to be beneficial not only within the groups but in everyday life. The project has had a wide impact, including contributing to the national development of music and dementia care.”
Director of Learning and Participation, Saffron Hall Trust, Thomas Hardy said: “It was very important to us that the making of this film was a truly collaborative process with people from across the Together in Sound Community and filmmaker Holly Cassidy has created a film which honestly shows the reality of life for those living with dementia, as well as the power and impact that music can have.”
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