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Title: 'I'D RATHER HAVE MUSIC!': the effects of live and recorded music for people with dementia living in care homes, and their carers
Author(s): Garabedian, Claire Elizabeth
Supervisor(s): Bowes, Alison
Kelly, Fiona
Keywords: music
end of life
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: The objectives of this thesis were to explore the effects of receptive individualised live and recorded-music on interactions within participating dyads consisting of a person with dementia who was in their final phase of life (resident), and a person with whom he or she shared a close connection (carer), as well as on each individual participant. A 'Receptive' music intervention is one where participants are not required to do anything but listen. METHODS The conceptual frameworks of realist evaluation, ethnography, symbolic interactionism, and dramaturgical actionism influenced the design of this study. There were two phases: during phase-1, fifteen semi-structured interviews were conducted with 'key-consultants', who were specialists in topics related to this thesis, to inform the design of 'phase-2'. During 'phase-2', musical interventions were conducted at five non-NHS care homes in Scotland over a period of nine-months. Each intervention consisted of either individualised live-music (3 sessions) or the same or similar music pre-recorded (three sessions); all music was played by the researcher on the solo cello. Interventions took place in residents' private bedrooms, and lasted between fifteen and seventy-minutes. The order of live and recorded-music interventions was switched for approximately half the dyads. Each intervention was video-recorded for later observation. Semi-structured interviews and Visual Analogue Scales (VAS) were administered with each participating carer before and after the conclusion of their series of interventions, to compare their expectations with their actual experiences and to better understand their experience. Whenever possible, key-staff and managers were also interviewed to learn what their perceptions of this study had been: its effects on them and on participants. ANALYSIS required repeated visits to the raw data: beginning with thickly-describing all video-footage; then thematically coding all thick-descriptions and transcribed audio-interviews; and lastly revisiting all video-footage via a self-modified version of an evaluative observation instrument; 'Person Interaction Environment Care Experience in Dementia' (PIECE-dem). FINDINGS support prior research regarding the beneficial effects of individualised receptive music on listeners who have dementia. This study suggests that both live and recorded-music promote wellbeing, and enhance dyad interaction in the moment of listening. These findings demonstrate the potential for receptive music to create an embodied sense of 'haven' for people with dementia who are nearing the end of life and for those sharing the experience with them: by capturing and holding their attention, and transporting them either back in time, or entirely out of time into a state of 'flow', or into an 'intense musical experience'.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation

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