Since May 2014, RPO Resound has been teaming up with Hull Integrated Community Stroke Service (HICSS) on a pioneering programme using group creative music-making to provide stroke rehabilitation for patients and carers in Hull. Over five months, six RPO musicians and Creative Leader Tim Steiner have been working with patients, carers and HICSS clinical staff to form the RPO STROKEstra, a musical ensemble created by, and for, stroke survivors.
The STROKEstra recently performed two original pieces ahead of the RPO’s season opening concert at Hull City Hall on Thursday 1 October 2015. Stroke survivor Tracy Jacobs shares a few thoughts about the programme:
“I have thoroughly enjoyed it all; it has been fantastic from start to finish. It gave me respite from my problems and I don’t ever want to forget this part of my stroke journey. It brought me a little bit of myself back. It was the first time I had done something on my own since my stroke.
“It has cleared my mind and now that it is over, I am ready to start afresh – out with the old and in with the new, and I’ll start by getting my hair cut on Saturday into a new style!
“I liked that I wasn’t pushed into doing it. It was always my choice to come. I really felt that the group grew into a little family, and it felt like I was going to see my family every day.
“My sister, who joined me at the last session and at the concert, said it was fantastic and she has never done anything as good as that before; she wished she had come from the beginning. For those couple of hours she was there, all her stresses went away.
“It was amazing.”
If you would like to see more of this project’s amazing work and view some videos of the performance, shared by members of the audience, please visit Tracy’s Facebook page, Life After Stroke.
This pilot programme was funded by the Hull Health & Wellbeing Board.