Christmas is definitely here. Just been to a wonderful Christmas carol concert in Porth, Rhondda, at Dan y Mynydd Residential Home for people with dementia. Felt privileged to be coordinating this project.
Please erase all preconceptions of homes for the elderly from your mind. This place is homely, fun and lively. Evidence of an unconventional approach can be seen in my photo of the table in the corner!
The concert followed several weeks of Karl Daymond setting up a choir with the residents and staff. It’s part of the ‘Being Creatively Active’ programme of work, run by ArtsConnect, the cultural service for Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil, Rhondda Cynon Taff and Vale of Glamorgan local authorities.
Increasing research shows the value of music projects for people with Alzheimers and other dementia conditions. One theory is that musical memories are connected to the amygdala, the part of the brain which has a primary role in processing memory and emotions. So we remember music and song when other functions have begun to fade.