Room to Room Music

Room to Room Music brings CLS musicians into care homes where they use responsive, spontaneous music-making to connect with the most isolated residents and staff. Connection, validation and mutual respect is at the core of the project.

By connecting with the residents and creating improvised musical responses inspired by their stories or movement, we aim to bring a connection with the outside world and raise the wellbeing of everyone involved through acknowledging, uplifting and valuing every individual who may normally have little or no opportunity for creative interaction and self-expression.

Two musicians playing music for someone in their room. The person is holding their hands out to the musicians.

We walked into the room of a resident who has dementia. We performed an extended improvisation for her on the clarinet and cello. She brightened up, asking repeatedly:

‘Who wrote that?’ she asked.

She couldn’t believe it when we said we had written it for her, with her.

Who has two musicians come into their private space and talk to them directly through music? Watch their fingers, watch how they breathe and use all this influence to continue a conversation with them musically. What an honour for me to have that conversation with her. A tailored experience for each resident based on their current feelings. Everything about the music was her, and that’s what makes it so meaningful.

After our playing [the resident] said she’d started the day feeling low and the music had really lifted her mood. I was so happy to know we had made a difference to her day.

– Katherine Spencer, CLS Principal clarinettist