Magic Me’s Artists Residencies in Care Homes (2015 – 2016) programme was a ground-breaking project sharing our 25+ years experience with some of the UK’s leading performing arts companies.
Artists Residencies in Care Homes provided a unique opportunity for Magic Me to share our intergenerational practice and arts in care homes experience with:
- Immersive theatre company, Punchdrunk Enrichment
- Alt-cabaret collective Duckie
- Circus company Upswing
- Performance artist and activist Lois Weaver
Partnering with national care home provider Anchor, the project sought to challenge ageist attitudes that, being older, residents would not enjoy up-to-date performing arts, and provide care homes with access to top-level arts experiences.
This creative partnership will not only bring enjoyment and new experiences, both within the care homes and in the wider community, but it will also provide our care staff with specialist knowledge and training. We hope this project will create a legacy of understanding about the delivery of the arts within a care setting, expelling the myth of what older people can achieve.
Debbie Sharples Kirkbride MBE, Anchor
During the residency of between 3 – 6 months, artists and performers ran activities with residents, their families and care home staff, working together to create new artworks and performance.
We aimed to channel the colour and excitement of the arts into care homes, tapping into older people’s creative energies and talents, to make and present new artworks and performances, both for the care home community and a much wider audience.
What did we learn?
The project tested new approaches and ideas, documenting what worked and why – valuable learning was shared with thearts and care sector through published reports and seminar events.
- Download and read Artists Residencies in Care Homes Programme report
- Listen to the report launch podcast here
We are always looking for new and unexpected spaces to create work with new participants. Creating work in a care home environment represents a significant and exciting challenge…we are looking forward to sharing our practice and learning from Magic Me about their approaches to working in a care home setting. We know this project will be challenging and will have an impact that will continue to inform and expand our practice in the coming years.
Drawing on over two decades of experience and expertise in running arts projects in care homes, Magic Me supported and advised the artists on how to best shape activities and present their work for care home residents, including those with dementia. Dorothee Irving from Paul Hamlyn Foundation one of the primary funders of the project said:
“We are delighted to be supporting this exciting opportunity for respected arts organisations to take their work into care homes while being supported by Magic Me, a company which is highly experienced in working with older people.”
The project was funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Wakefield and Tetley Trust and by Anchor’s Legacy Fund.
Photo credits Roxene Anderson, Marcus Hessenber, Paul Cochrane, Stephen Dobbie.