All three Opus musicians were present in Leicester Hospital for this morning – we had a very positive training session for an hour with staff, who engaged and came up with brilliant ideas and went forth to find many great resources we could all use in our musical play work together.
The latter part of the morning was spent in Ward 11. We played for patients recovering from operations, and then moved through to the day treatment waiting area.
We were then specifically asked by staff to go and play for one young lady who was a teenager, with autistic tendancies, waiting in another area because that area was too busy for her to be comfortable. We entered her room gently playing a positive major tune on fiddle, guitar and bodhran. She seemed to calm and engaged with us easily and quickly. She smiled and began moving gently with the music. I stopped playing the tune and started humming the melody whilst I found her a hand-held drum so she could join in with us. She seemed delighted with this and displyed a broad smile. She used her voice also singing along with us.
We played together for about 3 or 4 minutes and then we all seemed to come to a natural finish. She appeared pleased and calm, and the specialist was ready to see her, so we made our exit.
Later that day, her Mum posted comments to indicate how delighted she and her daughter had been with the music, and how much it had relaxed both of them and set the tone for the rest of their day there.