Why Music? An Evaluation of a Music Programme for Older People in the Community
Costa, F; Ockelford, A.

Background: A programme of regular ‘concerts and teas’ for older people was established in 2009 in the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, London. This evaluation examines their impact. Method: Following the music performance on two separate occasions, audience members were invited to participate in brief interviews. A semi-structured interview schedulewas used to collect qualitative data relating to the participants’ experience of both the music and the overall event. Results: The findings suggest that the music was effective in evoking positive emotions including happiness, relaxation, inspiration, awe and gratitude, whilst negative emotions, such as anxiety and worry, were lessened. The affective response was enhanced by the interaction between performers and audience, the high standard of performance and suitable repertoire. The opportunity for social contact and interaction relieved loneliness and contributed to the participants’ enjoyment of the events. Conclusion: It was concluded that the combined experience of live music and social contact is of benefit to the wellbeing of older people.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/ijmpa.v6n2a4