We're a group of actors who love performing, but we've discovered that nothing is quite like performing in front of an audience in a Care Home. We loved it!
Last May, funded by Arts Council England, and supported by AgeUK Oxfordshire, four actors and director, took two plays to residential homes in Oxford. In October we go to another five care homes and hope to repeat the joyful experience.
An important lesson for us was never assume that residents with dementia can't get involved. As soon as the energy of the actors hit the performance space, a number of them started joining in! One hilarious moment was when the highly pompous character was shouting for his wife to get an umbrella, a resident shouted out "Get it yerself!" then another "Oh chuck him out the window!".
We learnt that plays must be no longer than 30 minutes, lighthearted and with a clear story line. Music, sound effects and physical theatre play to all the senses and capture the imagination, so no need for sophisticated sets.
There's something very special about live theatre. It stimulates the imagination, provoking memories and laughter, as well as a sense of well being and community. We can't wait to get out on tour again in October! For more information please email: firstname.lastname@example.org go to our web site www.livingthedrama.co.uk. We'd love to hear from you!