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Recipe of Life

What one word would you use to describe your thoughts in response to Your Recipe for Life? – patience, love, family, honesty, just go for it ….

This particular strand of work has been building during 2016, beginning with a series of pilots to establish responses to puppetry through a series of workshops facilitated by different puppeteers in four of the partner care homes.

The concept of this work has been to create a co-produced theatre piece with residents. This process has involved a series of interactive and sensory workshops (20 in total) with a writer and puppeteers over an intensive period of a month.

In October writer Matthew Pegg was commissioned to develop a script with care home residents that will then be shown as a performance in care homes in the summer of 2017. We also have the expertise of puppeteers Sean Myatt from Nottingham Trent University and Nenagh Watson who has worked as a creative associate at the London School of Speech and Drama (University of London). The care homes involved are Sycamore and Millbeck Houses, The Firs, Park House and Nottinghamshire Hospice.

The facilitators in the team identified a number of aspects and approaches that the residents responded in particular to; these included a session about the seaside which seemed to have a lot of appeal. Tactile and sensory experiences seemed to engage people in the groups well and included being given sand to find objects in, something to taste or a soundscape to listen to. The puppets that were introduced within the sessions interested them both as constructed objects and as characters.

“There is candy floss and sand and the smells and tactile elements go down brilliantly – everyone really engages with the sensory elements.”

“One resident loved the puppet theatre so much that he sat in front of the screen making shadows – first with the puppet, then with his hand – for a good 30 minutes. It was really wonderful to see the joy on his face. Making shadows with his hands seemed to bring the most enjoyment – something so simple and a reminder of children – he said he used to make shadow puppets for his children when they were little.”

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