If I were to use one word to describe my first nine months in post, it would be ‘collaboration’. I have met so many people who are passionate about rehabilitation and the power of music and mentoring as a mechanism for change. Our supporters, donors, partners, and community groups work with us because we share the same vision, and by providing their time, donations, resources and expertise, we are seeing lives changed for the better. Collaboration and a joinedup approach is crucial for the rehabilitation of prisoners and ex-prisoners, primarily because they are facing a variety of difficulties in their lives that all require different solutions. Our unique yet vital model goes right to the heart of who a person is, providing them with the right tools to meet those difficulties head on and overcome them. We reveal people’s worth through mentoring and music, enabling them to grow in confidence and aspire to something more. The letter enclosed encapsulates why we do what we do, as a prisoner tells us “My family have… seen a difference within me” and that Changing Tunes has enabled him to “store up a good reputation for myself in the future.” Without the collaborative investment outlined above, we wouldn’t be able to provide these opportunities and have such a vital, human impact. Another worthwhile collaboration can also be found inside these pages, namely our recent partnership with St Mary Redcliffe Church. We brought the needs of our beneficiaries to light over the Lent period through various events, fundraising activities, an exhibition and a seminar. Our shared vision and values made this partnership extraordinarily successful, and huge congratulations to everyone involved for not only raising more than £5,500, but for embodying what it means to come together in community for the good of everyone in it.
Lizzie Bond Chief Executive
The Changing Tunes Newsletter Spring/Summer 16
A thank you from inside This letter was written by a prisoner attending one of Steve Parker’s music sessions on the Isle of Wight. We wanted to share it with you as it exemplifies a lot of the thank you letters we receive from prisoners who feel Changing Tunes have had a real positive impact on their lives.
words a big thank you to in y sa to ty ni rtu po op is th ke I would like [to] ta e to take part by m g in low al r fo t igh W of le Is Changing Tunes and HMP to play music. learning to read and to be able es is to my own anxiety un T g in ng ha C nt rta po im w I understand mentally ho one’s own feelings. g sin es pr ex of ity al qu d an lue and the significant va aying the piano very much pl joy en I g. in rd wa re ry ve ic I find studying mus enjoyable experience. an s] [i rs he ot th wi g in rk wo d an were to be able ns tio bi am y m ] nd [a 15 20 in I started Changing Tunes could walk but I re fo be n ru to ed nt wa I o. to play a tune on the pian simple works which then dy stu to e m ed sh pu e tev S ] ce [Musician in Residen rks of my own. wo lo so e fiv ted ple m co w no ve ha would improve on my reading. I is to me rehabilitation and to es un T g in ng ha C g vin ha f] The benefits [o y family have been very M . re tu fu e th in elf ys m r fo n store up a good reputatio fference within me. di a en se ve ha so al ey th d an e supportiv Tunes support, as well as g in ng ha C l al r fo n, ai ag u yo Thank lege to continue. ivi pr is th g in low al r fo t igh W HMP Isle of ging lives. Changing Tunes… no – chan
Our Partnership St Mary Redcliffe is a large Anglican Church in Bristol famous for its beautiful building and musical traditions. Every year they support a charity during the Lent period before Easter and this year it was Changing Tunes. Here are some highlights from what turned out to be a great partnership…
Workshop & Concert
As a Changing Tunes first, we invited supporters to perform in one of our concerts! We were thrilled that over 30 people turned up to our first choir workshop. Participants learnt the song ‘Hope and Faith’ (an original composition by an ex-prisoner) and accompanied him in performing it live at our concert that night. It was a great turnout and powerful message of acceptance for people to see such a collaborative performance. Watch this space for more opportunities to be part of a Changing Tunes performance again soon!
Thank you to everyone involved in reaching this total in such creative ways. Food was a big feature with cakes sales, bake offs, lunches, pop up cafes and even a British Pie Week. A special thank you to the Sunday school children who made and sold Easter cards and did a sponsored spotty fun run around the church! You can still donate by visiting changingtunes.org.uk/donate or by texting TUNE16£10
Exhibition The church attracts tens of thousands of visitors and tourists annually. During Lent visitors have been able to wander around a free Changing Tunes exhibition highlighting what life is like for prisoners and ex-prisoners today, and how they are able to process their thoughts and feeling through music. Visitors could listen to songs by prisoners and ex-prisoners while reading the lyrics and powerful stories behind them.
One tourist commented on Twitter: ‘The @ChangingTunesSW exhibition at @StMaryRedcliffe was heartwarming. Supporting prisoners through music.’
with St Mary Redcliffe but music was a safe vehicle for them to articulate and move forward. It felt very liberating and creative to watch this.
Visit to Eastwood Park A key part of our music sessions is setting goals and working towards performances. With the permission of the Governor, 20 supporters and members of St Mary Redcliffe had the rare opportunity to watch a performance inside Eastwood Park. One of those attendees was Ros Kennedy, High Sheriff of Bristol, who reflects on her experience below…
One of the privileges of being High Sheriff has been the opportunity to visit our local prisons, to talk to the staff and prisoners and witness how hard it is to be there. Several charities work in prisons to try to help prisoners reconnect with the outside world, and one of the most impressive ones I have come across is Changing Tunes. Having heard about their amazing work running weekly music sessions in
prisons, I was very keen to see them in action and so I was delighted to visit HMP Eastwood Park with them and watch a performance. A small group of us waited outside with our photo ID, together with prisoners’ relatives until we were allowed through security. We were led to a hall, where we joined prison chaplains, a few prisoners and some other visitors. The performance itself was a very special experience. There was a real sense of partnership between the four women taking part and musicians from Changing Tunes. We could clearly see the journey which these women had been on. We could witness the way that their lives were being changed by having the opportunity to express themselves and to use music as a safe way of looking at their feelings and experiences. All of them had had difficult times in their past,
The women had written many of the words to the songs which they performed, and it came across clearly how important this was for them to express themselves like this. It gave us a deeper insight into their experiences and their personal journey. The musicians from Changing Tunes were wonderful. They were caring and supportive without being at all patronising or judgemental, a real tool for change. I also enjoyed talking to some of the women afterwards and hearing how much these sessions were helping them mentally to cope and to think more optimistically about their future. I came away feeling deeply impressed by what I had seen and that the prison itself was obviously so supportive to what Changing Tunes are doing. I loved the way that one of the Chaplains performed during the concert, which was greatly appreciated by everyone, especially the prisoners themselves. I was so glad I had gone to HMP Eastwood Park and I hope that this work can be extended and continued to more prisons and prisoners. Ros Kennedy, High Sheriff of Bristol If you are interested in participating in another visit to see our work in action at Eastwood Park, please see the back page of this newsletter for details.
Music Therapy with Mothers and Babies in Prison Talk
Musician in Residence Fran Key shared her experiences of working with mothers and babies in prison at Eastwood Park. The event was organised by St Mary’s ‘Journey into Science’ group and Fran was joined by Dr Catherine Warner (Music Therapist, University of the West of England). The scientific research presented clearly supported the significant impact music therapy can have for helping mothers and babies to bond.
We’re thrilled to have a long list of events to invite our supporters to in the upcoming months! For more details, or to book tickets for these events, please visit www.changingtunes.org.uk/events
Eastwood Park concert:
The visit will take place at HMP Eastwood Park on the 20th of May. To inquire about a space, please email the Changing Tunes office at: email@example.com
Out There St George’s Music concert: Beckenham Once again we are so thrilled to be partnering with community choir and orchestra Out There Music Bristol for their Summer Concert! The event will be at St George’s in the centre of Bristol, on the 22nd of May at 7.30pm. Tickets can be purchased at stgeorgesbristol.co.uk – all proceeds will go to Changing Tunes.
We’re very happy to be welcoming new staff members to Changing Tunes this Spring. Scott Freeman has just (as this newsletter goes to print) finished his first month as Musician in Residence at HMP Winchester. Scott brings a lot of enthusiasm to the role, and has already
If you are in or around London on the 21st of June, we’d love to invite you along to the St George’s Arts Festival, where we’ll be performing with Benny Gallagher. For more information and to book tickets, please visit stgeorgesarts.co.uk/artsfestival-2016 and click on ‘Benny Gallagher Changing Tunes’.
jumped in to help Simon with postrelease work during his training period. Clive Edwards started work in HMP Cardiff over the winter, and is now in full swing running two sessions a week. His speciality – teaching group drumming sessions – has been very popular in the prison.
SOCA organists events:
This year we are being supported by the Somerset Organists’ and Choirs’ Association, who are raising funds for Changing Tunes through their programme of organ recitals throughout the South West this Spring and Summer. Here are some of their upcoming events: 4th June, 3pm – St Mary North Petherton – Organ recital by Andrew Hinkley 23rd July, 3pm – St Mary North Petherton – Organ recital by Ian Heavisides 27th August, 3pm – St Mary North Petherton – Organ recital by Stephen Price
Save the date: 15th October
Changing Tunes will be hosting our annual Bristol concert at Woodlands Church. More details to follow!
Sam Daniel is just commencing work in HMYOI Aylesbury as part of our London and South East franchise. He is also taking on the work in HMP Wandsworth after we recently said goodbye to our first ever musician in that prison, Alan Bryant
We also send out emails to our supporters occasionally, with information about upcoming events – if you’d like to receive these, please visit bit.ly/changingtunes
Changing Tunes, PO Box 2646, Bristol BS6 9BU Telephone 0844 414 6083 www.changingtunes.org.uk email: firstname.lastname@example.org
© Changing Tunes Charity No. 1144789
We have a unique opportunity available for a small number of our supporters to come along to visit one of the prisons we work in, and see our work in action through a special concert the prisoners have been working toward with our Musician in Residence, Fran.
Published on May 6, 2016
Changing Tunes' bi-annual newsletter, with news, events and updates. Check out this issue for a full report on our partnership with St Mary...