Over the past couple of months, Viva ran our third sensory room tour, bringing amazing music making to young people across the SEND spectrum.  Funded by Children in Need and running over 15 days – our biggest yet – we worked with schools and hospices across Derby, Leicester, Loughborough and Retford.  The sessions were led by clarinettist and music leader Jessie Grimes, and cellist Deirdre Bencsik, and each day, we ran a series of 30 minute 1-to-1 music sessions with young people, who took the creative lead – improvising on different instruments, singing songs, and playing musical games.

What I saw during these sessions was participants growing in confidence, taking control and exploring music.  They had enormous fun with Jessie and Deirdre, experimenting with sound and working together to create brilliant music. Staff were able to sit and observe the sessions, not only feeding back to us about what they had seen, but also giving them the chance to reflect upon how creative their young people are.

I’m currently working my way through all of the observation sheets, but some of the feedback that we have had from staff, and some of the things that I saw during the sessions, were truly wonderful.

“She LOVED this session and gained in confidence.  She didn’t want the session to finish – beautiful!”

“So lovely to see [x] so happy and responsive”

“Will definitely share with the family … [x] would love to take part in more sessions!”

“[x] really enjoyed this session.  She was happy and smily the whole time, [x] obviously felt very comfortable as she was able to express herself”

Thanks so much to all the wonderful young people we worked with throughout the tour - sharing some truly magical moments with you was really special, and I can’t wait to do more in 2020!