Dementia Action Week: Manchester Camerata relaunches its music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton

Manchester Camerata is relaunching its music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan ElliottManchester Camerata is relaunching its music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan Elliott
Manchester Camerata is relaunching its music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan Elliott | Duncan Elliott
The cafe brings together professional musicians and music therapists to support people with the memory-loss condition and their families and carers.

Music ensemble the Manchester Camerata is marking Dementia Action Week by relaunching its popular music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton.

The sessions which provide support for people with dementia, their families and carers from professional musicians and music therapists is starting up again.

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And it coincides with the week shining the spotlight on the devastating memory-loss condition.

What is the Manchester Camerata doing in Dementia Action Week?

The Camerata’s music cafe provides weekly free sessions for people who have dementia and those who help to look after them led by specially-trained musicians from the ensemble and music therapists.

The music cafe will be relaunched on Wednesday 18 May.

The Manchester Camerata’s music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan ElliottThe Manchester Camerata’s music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan Elliott
The Manchester Camerata’s music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton. Photo: Duncan Elliott | Duncan Elliott

This coincides with Dementia Action Week, which runs from Monday 16 May to Sunday 22 May.

The Camerata’s music cafe was so popular that a second one was launched at the Museum of Wigan Life in Wigan town centre.

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During the events new songs and tunes are created by the participants through improvised rhythms and songs, guided along the way by the Camerata’s professional musicians and therapy team.

The music cafe offers respite to families who might have little or no additional support while also providing a free, safe space in which to meet others in a similar situation.

The partners and families of those living with the memory-loss condtition are also shown how music can help to reconnect them to their loved ones and how valuable music is when used as a common language when speech is sometimes no longer available.

The project is funded by McLay Dementia Trust.

When are the sessions?

The music cafe at The Monastery in Gorton is on Wednesdays between 10am and midday.

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Wigan’s Soul Time Music Cafe runs fortnightly on Mondays until August.

To find out more or book a place at one of the sessions, email [email protected]

What has been said about the music cafe returning?

Lizzie Hoskin, head of community at Manchester Camerata, said: “We’re so pleased to be able relaunch our Music Café this month, in Dementia Action Week.

“As we saw first-hand when the cafes first began in both Gorton and in Wigan, these music-making sessions make such a positive impact to those living with dementia and also their carers.

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Professional musicians and therapists take part in the music cafe for dementia patients, their families and carers. Photo: Duncan ElliottProfessional musicians and therapists take part in the music cafe for dementia patients, their families and carers. Photo: Duncan Elliott
Professional musicians and therapists take part in the music cafe for dementia patients, their families and carers. Photo: Duncan Elliott | Duncan Elliott

“Our musicians and community team are really looking forward to welcoming past and new friends to The Monastery, sharing a cup of tea and making music again in the amazing Great Nave - and even have a bit of a dance!

“We’re really proud to be able to make this Music Cafe possible with thanks to the generosity of the McLay Dementia Trust.

“It’s so exciting to see the positive impact our year-round community programme and life-enhancing dementia work is having.”

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