Kings Mill Hospital, Mansfield (Children’s)

Charity Single: This Won’t Last Long

We’re delighted to launch our new charity song ‘This Won’t Last Long’, a song of hope and strength for our friends and colleagues in the NHS.

It has been written, recorded and produced in isolation whilst staying at home to help protect, and in celebration of, our NHS.

We’re happy to offer a free download of this song at our Bandcamp page.

If you like what you hear, then please support the work of the amazing Hospital Charities in Leicester, Nottingham, Derby and Sherwood Forest Hospitals at our Justgiving page.

Thank you!

Music in Healthcare Training: 8-12 May 2017




Applications are now CLOSED for this course as all places have been filled. Thank you for your interest. Please get in touch at to be sent details of future courses.

Applications are now open for our 5-day Music in Healthcare Settings Training course based in Derby and Sutton in Ashfield, UK.

This course will take place on 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 May 2017 at Kedleston Road Training and Development Centre, Derby and Kings Mill Hospital, Sutton in Ashfield. (Shared travel will be arranged between Derby and Kings Mill Hospital for those needing it)

More details are available here:

Music in Healthcare Training opportunity Musicians Brief May 2017 (pdf)
Application Form (pdf)
Application Form (word document)

We will be offering places on the training programme as we receive suitable applications. We will close the application process once all eight places have been filled.

You are encouraged to apply as soon as possible and before the deadline of Friday 10th March 2017 as places could fill up quickly.

Here’s what previous trainees have said about this training course:

If you are at all interested in how music can be used as a vehicle for better health, happiness and well-being…DO THIS COURSE. It was one of the most moving, enlightening and humbling weeks of my life and has confirmed 100% for me that I’m on the right path musically, professionally and personally.

This training was all about fabulous human encounters in music: with the patients, their relatives, the hospital staff, my fellow trainees, and of course with Nick, Sarah and Richard.

I would recommend doing this training if you feel excited about the possibility of using music to enrich and even transform lives in a setting that is a long way from the stage.

This course has the potential to redefine your ideas of musical performance and what it means to connect with others when making music, in healthcare settings and beyond. My notions of musicality were challenged and broken open to reveal once more the true beauty of creativity. Something I am thankful for. The course is an absolute must for musicians, healthcare staff and humanity as a whole.

Training with Opus has been an incredibly creative, exciting, moving, challenging and fun five days, that have inspired me musically and personally. I feel privileged to have met such creative and talented musicians, and feel compelled to tell everyone about the immense power of music in the hospital setting!

Every moment of the course is crucial to exploring the role of the musician in a healthcare setting. The team of professional and well-experienced facilitators firmly ground the profession within its social and cultural context and offer a structured introduction to cutting edge techniques and exploratory, collaborative experience within the hospital setting itself. I would whole-heartedly recommend attending a course with OPUS to any musician looking to have an impact in this growing area of expertise.

This is one of the best training courses I have ever attended because in such a short time it has given me musical skills and confidence I did not have, as well as opening up a new career path in a fascinating discipline

The course is incredibly fulfilling and so valuable. It was unique in how engaging, rewarding and informative it was, as well as fun! I felt at ease quickly and thoroughly enjoyed how much I learnt, both in the experiences it gave but also the practical tools I have acquired to develop my own practice and passion for music in healthcare settings.

Music in Healthcare Apprentices

We’re delighted to introduce our new Music in Healthcare Apprentices for 2015/16. This innovative programme, now in its second year, is designed to support emerging Music in Healthcare musicians in developing their own regular, professional practice.

apprentices 201516 (2)pictured L-R: Nick Cutts, Rachel Fillhart (Apprentice), Sarah Matthews, Aisling Holmes (Apprentice), Becky Eden-Green (Apprentice), Richard Kensington, Kate Jackson (Apprentice)

Last year’s programme was extremely successful, with Apprentices collaborating to form two new Music in Healthcare organisations, Wellspring Music CIC and Pulse Arts CIC, working in Nottingham and London respectively on new programmes of practice including at Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital. These new organisations remain connected to OPUS Music CIC through the growing Music in Healthcare Network, and through its Associate Musician Programme.

Our new Apprentices, all who previously took part in one of OPUS’ five-day Music in Healthcare Settings training programmes, have already spent a few days working alongside OPUS Musicians to begin planning their own programmes of work, and to develop repertoire and approaches to Music in Healthcare practice. Each Apprentice will work alongside mentors (OPUS Musicians) in one of our regular Children’s Hospital practices:

Becky Eden Green will be based at Leicester Children’s Hospital
Rachel Fillhart will be based at Nottingham Children’s Hospital
Aisling Holmes will be based at Derbyshire Children’s Hospital
Kate Jackson will be based at King’s Mill Hospital (Children’s wards)

We’re delighted to be able to continue our Apprenticeship programme in 2015/16, and looking forward to seeing (and hearing) new practitioners and programmes of practice emerging.

The Apprenticeship programme is made possible using public funding by Arts Council England.



Music in Healthcare Settings Apprenticeships: 2015-2016

Many thanks for the many applications we received.
We look forward to announcing our new Apprentices for 2015/16 soon.

We are delighted to launch the second year of our Music in Healthcare Settings Apprenticeship programme.

From September 2015 to June/July 2016, we are offering four paid apprenticeships, exploring Music in Healthcare Settings practice alongside highly experienced OPUS Musicians and Trainers and supporting the development of new programmes of practice.

Click on the following links for more information:

Full Apprenticeship Programme Details (pdf)
Apprenticeship Timetable (pdf)
Application Form (word)
Application Form (pdf)

The deadline for applications is midday on Friday 5th June 2015 with interview/auditions to be held in Derby on Friday 12th June, Monday 15th June or Tuesday 16th June 2015.


This programme is made possible with the support of public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.


Continued music-making residencies in children’s hospitals

We are delighted to be able to continue, and expand our existing relationships with Derbyshire, Leicester, Nottingham and Kings Mill Children’s Hospitals with support from Youth Music and from our local and hospital partners.

This support means that OPUS musicians will now visit each hospital on a weekly basis until April 2016, making music for and with the patients, their families and staff.

Our recent evaluation and documentation work has demonstrated the highly valued impacts of this practice; we are incredibly grateful for the support of all our partners in enabling this work to continue.

youth music full logo

Music in Healthcare Settings Apprenticeships: 2014-2015

We are delighted to launch our brand new Music in Healthcare Settings Apprenticeship programme.

From September 2014 to July 2015, we are offering four paid apprenticeships, exploring Music in Healthcare Settings practice alongside highly experienced OPUS Musicians and Trainers and supporting the development of new programmes of practice.

Click on the following links for more information:

Full apprenticeship programme details (pdf)
Apprenticeship timetable (pdf)
Application Form (word)
Application Form (pdf)

The deadline for applications is midday on Friday 6th June 2014 with interview/auditions to be held in Derby on Monday 16th June 2014.
This programme is made possible with the support of public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.


Evaluation: OPUS in Children’s Hospitals

OPUS’ current music in hospitals programme, taking place in Derbyshire, Leicester, Nottingham and Kings Mill Children’s Hospitals, is coming to an end in March 2014. We hope to resume the practice in May 2014, funding permitting! As part of the current programme, OPUS engaged the services of Evaluation Consultant Dr Anneli Haake to evaluate the programme. Anneli has done a fantastic job, capturing evidence of the impacts of this practice and pulling this all together into academic and summary report documents, an A1 size academic poster (for display in hospitals) and the film (3 versions) previously shared here. View and/or download the files by clicking the images below, and please feel free to share! Huge thanks to Anneli for all her work on this project with us.





Sunshine in My Heart Film: OPUS in Children’s Hospitals

We are delighted to share our film, made as part of the evaluation process of our current Music in Children’s Hospitals practice supported by Youth Music, Derbyshire Hospitals Charity, Nottingham Hospitals Charity, Leicester City Council and Nottinghamshire County Council. The film was captured at Nottingham and Leicester Children’s Hospitals by our fantastic external evaluator Dr Anneli Haake.

There are three versions of our film. The full film is 24 minutes long, but if you don’t have the time (please try to make time, we think it’s worth it!) there are 4 minute and 1 minute ‘tasters’. Please do get in touch and let us know your own reflections on our film..

Full film (24 minutes)

4 minute ‘taster’

1 minute ‘taster’


Friday 11th Jan

Friday’s visit to hospital allowed us to visit a young man in his teens with special needs.

We began with ‘Zamina’ and played to him a few times through. The Play Specialist stayed with us the whole time and produced from the music box, a few different hand held instruments for the patient to try…a few different shakers and the bell stick. He spent some minutes investigating these sounds and playing with the music and testing out some different tempos and volumes.

The xylophone was then offered to try. His Dad told us that his son used to play the drums a lot at home. The patient soon showed us that he already had his own technique for holding 1 or 2 beaters. He demonstrated choice of note pitches, speed of playing, styles of playing and at times there was interaction between him and us and he engaged with our music as part of what he was doing. Mostly though, he seemed to be envigorated by the whole activity.

His father and the Play Specialist commented that he had not been very active or energetic since arriving in hospital that week and that this was the most energised and happy he had been. During the course of the session he had gone from a stretched out lying down position (watching the TV upside down from bed), to more upright, to leaning on one arm, and then finally sat right up vertically (sorting his legs so they were crossed in front of him and he could fully see what he was doing, see us and use both hands with the beaters for the instrument). He appeared to have completely changed his mood.

We left him playing the Xylophone with his father and the Play Specialist said she would call in and collect the instrument later when he had finished.

As we moved down the corridor playing and singing with other patients, we could still hear this young man making music.