TURTLE SONG, NOW IN ITS 12TH YEAR, BRINGS MUSIC, SONG WRITING, MOVEMENT AND SINGING TO PEOPLE WITH DEMENTIA TOGETHER WITH THEIR COMPANIONS AND CARERS.
TURTLE SONG WAS FEATURED ON THE BBC DOCUMENTARY HOLDING BACK THE YEARS.
The participants meet once a week for ten weeks, and with the help of professional musicians and music students, write the lyrics and compose the music for their own song cycle, ending in a live performance for friends and family which is recorded as a DVD.
Turtle Song encourages artistic and social interaction, a positive outlook through an enjoyable and shared activity and gives the brain and body a bit of stimulating exercise. It also helps to enhance the professional development of the music students who take part in the project. Since the first Turtle Song at the Royal College of Music, London in 2008 it has been introduced in Cambridge, Wolverhampton, Dulwich, Hackney, Suffolk, Oxford, Stockton-on-Tees, Leeds, Norwich, Croydon, York, Reading and Newbury; there are now on average three held each year.
"I cried silent tears of sorrow, of pride, of happiness, of loss, of admiration, of gratitude and more. Thank you for bringing joy to my mum, for accepting her just as she is and for making her truly happy. I have not seen her smile like that for a long time, today she was my beautiful, intelligent, kind & caring, fun loving mum again” (From the daughter of a participant in Reading 2015)
Free to all participants. Turtle Song is an English Touring Opera, Royal College of Music and Turtle Key Arts collaboration. Special thanks to The Henry Smith Charity, Mark Armitage, C.A. Redfern Charitable Foundation and Scouloudi Foundation. Images by Graham McGrath