"A couple of the patients who can be quite agitated were able to sit quietly for extended periods and even sang along. One patient became quite emotional as a result of the memories triggered by the music and everyone was much calmer and more settled."
A Music in Hospitals' concert provides a welcome distraction from the everyday routine of long-term care. Attention span can be short, but for those who find verbal commuinication difficult, the signs of pleasure in facial expressions can be remarkable.
On many occasions we receive reports of people singing along to familiar tunes, word perfect, yet they are unable to speak. Music acts on the right hand side of the brain, the opposite side to speech, reading and writing. Live music has the power to open closed doors and help people express emotions they are unable to communicate verbally. This provides the person with a feeling of great achievement and happiness which reflects on their well being.
Amongst countless examples, a client asked our musicians at a concert if she could sing some Gershwin songs. The pianist immediately agreed to accompany her, and she sang three songs, to great applause. We learned afterwards this particular lady suffers from severe depression. The evening gave her a real confidence boost and brought a special element of shared enjoyment to all involved.