My friend Rachel attended Liberated Words‘ “Reflections” screening at Bath last week, and this film, directed by Howard Vause of Frome Media Arts, was one of her favorites. I agree it’s a marvelous blend of live and animated sequences, and the back-story—the way it grew out of creative sessions with adults with dementia—is compelling, too. Here’s the description from Vimeo:
‘Babka and The Golden Bird’ is a Russian folktale in which the heroine, Babka, an elderly woman rescues a dying bird. When the forest is threatened, the bird grants her three wishes…
The Golden Bird Project invited patients on the RUH [Royal United Hospitals] Older People’s Units to take part in a series of interactive storytelling workshops with poet, Helen Moore and film-maker Howard Vause. With music by Frankie Simpkins and models by Edwina Bridgeman (Art At The Heart Musician and Artist in Residence respectively), the project was initiated by Sarah Tremlett (Liberated Words), funded by BaNES and supported by Art at the Heart’s Hetty Dupays and Diane Samways (Arts Programme Manager and Marketing, respectively).
This film features an original poem by Helen Moore based on both the folktale and contributions from workshop participants. It premieres at Liberated Words Poetry Film Festival (Arnolfini, Bristol) in September 2014.
Drawing on my experience of running story sessions with older adults with dementia, I’ve seen how tactile objects can offer a stimulating opener for group work. Handling the objects provides the participants with sensory engagement, which helps ground them in the present moment. And by choosing things that connect with the story I’m about to tell, there’s a ‘bridge’ into what will follow. … Encouraging participants to express associations that arise with the objects can also facilitate self-expression in new/unexpected areas, mining memories and experiences, which were perhaps long forgotten.