• Thom Rowlands

Pizzicato is more her style

Musicians: Ben Hazleton (double bass) Alice Zawadzki (violin, vocals)

The sonatas of Italian violinist and composer Arcangelo Corelli were on the programme today, as Ben and Alice began their visit with resident JG. She's a fan of Baroque and Elizabethan music so this was right up her street. So much so that when Ben and Alice made their way up the corridor to play for other residents in the hallway, JG joined them, keen for a second recital. Encore!

Resident LG can often be found in an armchair in the entrance hall, so Alice and Ben set up shop there after asking if she'd like to hear some music. She's been quite withdrawn of late, with just occasional displays of emotion to specific songs. Ben decided that rather than playing Over The Rainbow, which we know is a firm favourite of hers, they would play the Corelli sonatas again. They were challenging her, seeking a response to something unfamiliar rather than playing it safe. LG couldn't take her eyes off Alice's bow and at the end of the music, clapped and smiled.

Second floor resident SD, who we have known for years, is now bed-bound and often distressed. Ben and Alice visited, playing calm, soothing melodies as she dozed. Ben observed that playing pizzicato (plucking the strings, rather than using the bow) was "more SD's style", on trying this, SD remained peaceful through the performance.

The wife of resident JS (the resident percussionist of Bridgeside Lodge) told us that he has seemed less engaged with music of late, showing less interest and participating less than previously. Today however, something really grabbed him! It was hard to say exactly what this was, but he suddenly began drumming on the table, dancing in his chair and seeming more like the JS we know! The power of music in plain sight. It's a joy to see people who may seem to be fading, suddenly come alive again.

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