Physically and emotionally, music moves us. I have never learnt to dance and the odd attempts to do so have fizzled out dismally. But I don’t really care. These days, if I feel like moving to the music, I just move and it feels good.
It is a completely universal, cross-cultural phenomenon. When I was busking in my early 20s, toddlers and small children would dance spontaneously to the live music I was playing. This always fascinated me. It demonstrated, right before my eyes, the indelible, instinctual connection humans have between music and movement. The urge to move to music comes with a surge in feeling generated by the music, especially the rhythm of the music.
While developing MindHarp with people living with dementia in 2018, Mark and I had many experiences combining MindHarp play with movement. Sometimes it was slow and deliberate and yoga-like, sometimes much more spontaneous. The MindHarp sessions opened doors in the minds and spirits of people where doors were constantly closing.
The video link below captured one such day. These wonderful ladies had no problem strutting their stuff. We we laughing, playing, moving and re-energising – not words one usually associates with dementia and care. Watch out for the ‘Wigwam’…it could be the next big dance craze.
A big thanks again to the Peggy Dodd Centre in Bath for our months of development work there.