PROFESSIONAL DEMENTIA-FRIENDLY MUSIC EVENTS
Relaxed – Inclusive – Joyous
Songhaven is committed to bringing joy and authentic connection to people living with dementia through the power of professional music-making in a relaxed and shame-free setting.
Songhaven was founded in early 2017 by operatic mezzo-soprano and professional event producer Vivien Conacher. Vivien wanted to provide a space where people living with dementia (including carers and companions) could come together and enjoy afternoon concerts by professional musicians in a joyous and welcoming atmosphere. She also wanted to give classically-trained artists paid performance opportunities that were relaxed, fun, and that would also help them to expand their skills and repertoire.
The monthly Songhaven Concert Series was first launched in Bloomsbury and quickly gained a loyal audience following throughout the London borough of Camden. A second monthly concert series was launched in 2018 at St Paul’s Knightsbridge and also grew steadily in popularity. Following numerous requests to bring the Songhaven concert experience to people living in residential care homes, soprano Nazan Fikret joined the team in 2019 to launch and facilitate the Songhaven Care Concerts scheme, which received rave reviews from care home staff and residents alike.
Although Songhaven’s live concert experiences have been on hold since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Songhaven has been able to continue their work through a new digital concert series Songhaven at Home. This online archive of free 30 minute concert films features footage recorded at Songhaven’s live concert events. The Songhaven at Home YouTube videos received 6,000 views within a year, and have been a valuable resource for at-home carers, care home workers, and hospital staff to bring the joy and well-being benefits of music to people living with dementia during the pandemic.
OUR CORE VALUES
- Professional Excellence – in the calibre of musicians we work with, the preparation put into each concert programme, the running of our events on the day, and the audio/visual quality of our digital offerings.
- Inclusion – proactively creating spaces where people at risk of exclusion and social isolation (including people living with dementia, older people, and carers) feel welcomed on a regular basis into a caring community.
- Joy – fostered through quality music-making, a relaxed and friendly atmosphere and presentation style, and our social post-concert afternoon teas.
- Connection – artists are encouraged to mingle and interact with the audience during live performances, as well as during the post-concert afternoon tea, volunteers of all ages are on hand to engage with attendees throughout the event, and to seek feedback and music requests.
- Participation – Songhaven’s live events (including live-streamed concerts) always include interactive moments – such as singalongs, movement, dancing, and clapping – active participation is encouraged throughout the concert!
- Dignity & Respect – our artists, volunteers, and audience members are treated with respect and dignity, and viewed as equals. Every Songhaven event is designed to show every person involved that they are valued, and to embody our belief that everyone deserves the best possible experience at Songhaven!
Although our live concert series and care home performance visits are currently on hold, you can still experience the the joy of our professional concerts virtually, through Songhaven at Home.
Songhaven at Home is a FREE collection of 30 minute professional concert films with accompanying printable programmes. CLICK HERE TO VIEW!
New Songhaven at Home films are sent out monthly via email to all our newsletter subscribers. Click HERE to sign up, and keep an eye on your inbox (and your junk mail folder just in case!)