Over the last few years, the BSO has embedded working with people living with dementia at the heart of its practice. This work was recognised by Alzheimer’s Society in 2017 when they awarded the BSO ‘Dementia Friendly Organisation of the Year’.

The BSO continues to take action to improve and enrich the lives of people living with dementia, and is now hosting more dementia-friendly events across the South West than ever before. This year, the BSO has already hosted 35 dementia-friendly events and engaged with over 1,200 people living with dementia.

This Dementia Action Week, BSO musicians will be performing interactive musical workshops and performances for people living with dementia in three hospitals across Devon and Dorset. Patients and staff at Bournemouth Hospital, Dorset County Hospital and Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital will be visited by BSO Associate musicians, highly experienced workshop leaders based in local communities, who will perform interactive musical sessions.

Hugh Nankivell, BSO Associate, said “For many people living with dementia being in hospital is very distressing. Music can be an oasis, a journey into a different world where they can relax and communicate in a comfortable and playful space. I have been privileged to be a witness to this transformation.”

The BSO’s dementia-friendly work ranges from projects specifically designed for those living with dementia, such as its Cake Concerts, to ensuring that its wider community events, such as Tea Dances or care home visits, are accessible for everyone.

The BSO would not be able to continue its award-winning work with people living with dementia without the support of organisations such as Tilney, the Financial Planning and Investment Group. In February 2019 the BSO announced its new partnership with Tilney, which is focussed on supporting the BSO’s work with those in later life care and those living with dementia.

To find out more about the Orchestra’s work with those living with dementia, please visit bsolive.com/participate