Music Therapy with Nordoff Robbins

We are delighted to welcome Francesca our Music Therapist who has recently joined us from Nordoff Robbins. Francesca is working with LifeCare to develop a music therapy programme with our two dementia clubs. This programme has been made possible by the support from Tesco Bank.

“Today it was the second music therapy session at LifeCare.

The group in St Bernard’s club became quite animated during the ‘Hello Song’ and some of the client’s joined in with the singing. Mary made some positive comments about the tune and the sound of the guitar.

After Francesca welcomed everyone, she encouraged each member of the group to choose a couple of egg shakers. Most of the group were able to play for a few minutes a mash up of ‘Scotland The Brave’, ‘Mairi’s Wedding’, ‘Shake the Shaker’, ‘Shake Rattle and Roll’, ‘This Little Light Of Mine’ and ‘When The Saints Go Marching In’. Derek was especially involved during this activity, playing at different speed and following different actions. Members of the staff team commented on how lively and responsive Derek was during this moment.

The group then engaged in a  sing along such as ‘You Make Me Feel So Young’, ‘Wild Mountain Thyme’, ‘That’s Amore’, ‘New York New York’, ‘My Love is Like a Red Red Rose’. The clients responded well to the guitar and were motivated by singing the different songs.

Francesca then introduced the group to the Boomwhackers, a set of plastic tubes each of them playing a different note from the C major scale. Francesca started a ‘call and response’ activity where each member was encouraged to play a short rhythm to the group. It was really impressive to see Donald taking hold of the tubes after putting them on the floor and engaging in a playful game with Francesca. After this, Francesca suggested to try and play ‘Frere Jacques’. She explained to the group that they would act as an orchestra, with each member playing a note following her prompt. The members were very responsive to this and enjoyed using the Boomwhackers.

The session ended with the group singing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ with gusto and ‘Wish Me Luck As You Wave Me Goodbye’. There was a cheerful atmosphere at the end of the session and some of the members were still singing on their way to lunch.”


Music Therapist – Nordoff Robbins