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Turtle Song

I cried silent tears of sorrow, of pride, of happiness, of loss, of admiration, of gratitude and more. Thank you for bringing joy to my mum, for accepting her just as she is and for making her truly happy. I have not seen her smile like that for a long time, today she was my beautiful, intelligent, kind & caring, fun loving mum again

From the daughter of a participant in Reading 2015

Turtle Song, now in its 14th year, brings music, song writing, movement and singing to people with dementia together with their companions and carers.

The participants meet once a week for ten weeks, and with the help of professional musicians and music students, write the lyrics and compose the music for their own song cycle, ending in a live performance for friends and family which is recorded as a DVD.

Since the first Turtle Song at the Royal College of Music, London in 2008 it has been introduced in Cambridge, Wolverhampton, Dulwich, Hackney, Suffolk, Oxford, Stockton-on-Tees, Leeds, Norwich, Croydon, York, Reading and Newbury; there are now on average of three held each year.

Free to all participants. Turtle Song is an English Touring Opera, Royal College of Music and Turtle Key Arts collaboration.

We aspire to develop the delivery of these projects, reaching more communities, with a focus on areas of high social and health derivation. We also hope to increase awareness of, and funding for this work, thanks to greater advocacy about the importance and benefits of creative projects for older people with dementia.

To hear more about Turtle Song or how your community can get involved, email our Associate Artist Bradley Travis.


Bradley Travis
Associate Artist bradley.travis@englishtouringopera.org.uk