This sentiment is exactly the kind of environment we hope to foster at Rise, Shine, Sing! Cassandra Sheppard, through Uplift Connect, wrote an article on "The Neuroscience of Singing," and the benefits of singing, especially group singing.
Meet our team! Next up is our research team, the amazing women behind this project's creation, Dr. Colleen Renihan, Dr. Julia Brook, and Dr. Rebecca Draisey-Collishaw.
Dr. Colleen Renihan, Assistant Professor and Queen's National Scholar in Music Theatre and Opera at the DAN School of Drama and Music, is a musicologist, singer, and voice teacher. Colleen's research is focused on contemporary opera and music theatre in Canada and the US. She writes about the ways that memory and historical processes and forms can be represented and enlivened through opera and music theatre.
Julia Brook is Co-Principal Investigator for the Accessible and Inclusive Music Theatre Research Group at the Dan School, where she is also a faculty member in music education. Julia grew up in Manitoba and also worked as an elementary music piano teacher before pursuing graduate work in education. Julia is looking forward to making music with the participants in Rise, Shine, Sing! and will be playing the piano for the group.
Rebecca Draisey-Collishaw completed her PhD in ethnomusicology at Memorial University in 2017. She currently holds a SSHRC Post-doctoral Fellowship at the Dan School of Drama and Music at Queen’s University. Building on her doctoral study of public service broadcasting and music programming in multicultural contexts, her current research explores historical role of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) as a producer and facilitator of music in Canada. In addition to elaborating this history, this research provides a foundation for assessing current trends in programming. Rebecca co-edited the Yearbook for Traditional Music Vol. 50 (2018) and curated the Irish Traditional Music Archive's digital archival exhibition, A Grand Times: The Songs, Music & Dance of Newfoundland's Cape Shore (itma.ie/newfoundland). Her research appears in MUSICultures (2012), Ethnomusicology Forum (2018), and Contemporary Musical Expressions in Canada (MQUP 2019).
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Rise, Shine, Sing not only focuses on the benefits of group singing, but also on movement! With the expertise of esteemed physiotherapist and dance educator Amy Booth (who will be introduced later!), the sessions will also include movement warm-ups and activities.
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Group singing, like Rise, Shine, Sing, can help people living with dementia, Alzheimers, or other neurological impairments achieve a sense of community, improve their mood/quality of life, and in some cases combat their impairment.
Singing for the Brain is a singing group run by the UK Alzheimer's Society with over 30 locations. It aims to "boost confidence, self esteem and quality of life by involving people with dementia and their carers in interactive sing-song sessions" (Age UK, "Dementia and Music"). The video below is a flash mob put on by one of those groups!
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Intergenerational choirs are an amazing way for people of all ages and abilities to come together and create music, build relationships, and increase their overall mood and happiness.
The Intergenerational Choir Project, organized by the Alzheimer Society London and Middlesex, the Sisters of St. Joseph, and Medway High School in London, ON is one of these choirs (as seen below in a video of the project). Rise, Shine, Sing aims to achieve those same effects, while also addressing the importance of movement!
If you'd like to sign up for sessions press the 'Sign Up' button at the top of the page! If you have any questions about the project feel free to reach out to this page or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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What is Rise, Shine, Sing? Simply put, it's a 10-week program for people of all ages and abilities who like to sing, move, and tell stories (check out our event for more information!). But who is leading the program? Led by specialists in singing, dancing, movement, and education, RSS has been created by "Accessible & Inclusive Music Theatre" (AIMT), a SSHRC- and CFI-funded research project & creative hub at the DAN School of Drama and Music, Queen's University. We at AIMT explore how participation in music theatre supports well-being and creativity through accessible and inclusive design.
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