Responding to Music video


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland, DVDs and Videos]

I watched the video today with the staff at John’s CH, and found it extremely moving. It was made in N Ireland in various day centres, and funded by Age Concern.

It shows one-to-one interaction between a music therapist and various people at different stages of dementia, and the response she got was amazing.

The instruments were a wooden xylophone, bongo drums, a tambourine, maracas, shakers, etc., nothing too noisy.

The therapist would tap out a rhythm for the person to copy, sing a snatch of a song, hum a tune, dance, anything to stimulate them, and it worked. They’d start to sing, to talk in rhythm, to tap in time.

One lady, who seemed to be very advanced, said ‘I wonder if I might be underdoing it.’ The therapist asked what she meant, and she said ‘I might not be putting enough in.’

You’ll have gathered, I’m very enthusiastic. It would work in CHs, in day centres, or even at home with children’s instruments.

I have no financial or professional involvement with the project. The video costs £10.
Last edited:


Your 'Responding to Music Video' info has reminded me of something that I saw years back.

A link which may be of interest in the sphere of music therapy:

If my memory serves me right, there was a wonderful woman called Sybil Beresford-Pearce at the heart of it, when the Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy Centre (I believe it was called then) first came into being in this country. Largely aimed then at children with various disabilities. She died some years ago. I saw her and her colleagues in action with severely disabled children - and the transformation over even a short period was wonderful to see. And the magic of that transformation was retained in the children.

I remember in particular one young blind boy, who had been able 'to do' very little until music therapy came into his life; within a week, he was hooked! Drums were his passion thereafter.

Had only a quick look at the Nordoff Robbins website and it looks as though they now also work in the field of dementia. More I know not at the moment, but just thought it might be worth a mention.



Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Thanks for that link, Katie. It does seem to be the same sort of thing.

Unfortunately they only operate in the Central Belt of Scotland at the moment, but it's certainly worth investigating.