SEMINAR (online) | Songlines: Engaging people with dementia through poetry & song

Wed 22 November, 1pm-2pm (online seminar)

An online lunchtime seminar exploring the benefits, challenges, and key learnings of engaging people with dementia through the participatory arts.

Songlines took place in spring 2023 in four locations across Wexford and Waterford. An introductory session and three subsequent workshop sessions saw four artists engage with those living with dementia and cognitive impairment through discussions of poetry and songs. Focusing on favourite poems and songs learned in childhood, during the teen years and into adulthood, the workshops revealed memories associated with both artforms, and resulted in the creation of new work, which was performed from the Van by the artists, residents, and staff at celebratory wrap-up live performances.

Joining this seminar will be Liam Merriman (musician) and Margaret Galvin (poet) as well as Paul Carey (Manager, Grantstown Daycare Centre) for a conversation hosted by Joe Brennan about the benefits and challenges of bringing the participatory arts into healthcare settings. Discussions will range from ethical considerations to expectations versus reality to what sort of investment and preparatory work is necessary to make a programme such as Songlines successful. This event will close with a Q&A.

If you're an artist working in the area of arts and health; or if you're an activities coordinator or community worker interested in bringing a similar programme to your location; or if you're an arts worker or arts officer who wants to share insights and learnings; or you'd simply like to learn more; then you are very welcome to join for what  will be an insightful opportunity to gather and share with one another.

Festival in a Van are very grateful to the Arts Council, Waterford County Council, Wexford County Council, Waterford Healing Arts, Poetry Ireland, Marie Brett and Jane O’Hanlon, and all the staff and residents of the care homes and day care centres for their support of this very special Festival in a Van project.

Everyone is welcome. 

Register for the Songlines Seminar here:

Hope to see all online next week.