We visited Wiltshire for a week late in May 2018 for our Summer Tour 2018. A series of performances, each and every one special in its own way. This due to an excellent contact made at the event we convened last summer.

The cast of ‘The Audition’.  Louise, Tom and Francesca.

‘In Search of the Essence of Care’ offered a tremendous opportunity for creative engagement in a different, collaborative and constructive environment, and for the fostering of meaningful connections and conversations around innovation in care. How true!

First up on our tour was a private performance: the 90thbirthday celebration for a very dear lady who seldom gets out of the house let alone to the theatre because of mobility challenges. A heartfelt performance for a small audience of close friends in an intimate setting, deftly managed by our professional performers and thoroughly enjoyed by all. Delicious tea and cake, thank you!

A succession of performances followed, in collaboration with Celebrating Age Wiltshire: bringing live music, theatre, dance & art to your local community. Armed with satnav and good instructions, the healthpitch team criss-crossed the county of Wiltshire and enjoyed the warm hospitality of the various hosts and helpers. The Audition went down a treat at every venue, reaching an array of local folk. Our requirement that local staff who know the audience always be at hand was validated when a member of the audience became unwell during a performance, likely due to the heat – the situation was well handled, including by our singers who could monitor and adapt the show accordingly.

“It made me smile and it made me cry.  It was a great way to ‘demystify’ opera. Thank you.” – Audience member

“Good! It was inspired and v high quality. Thank you!” – Audience member

Hats off to the fabulous Durrington Friday Club team and those behind the scenes for having taken the initiative to invite residents from the nearby care home along, and how well this was organised – just the sort of action healthpitch hopes to spark with our sought-after performances!

“Amused. Entertained. In awe of the musical talent. Inspired by the way connections were made with the audience members.” – Audience member

The weather played games with us (rain, lots of it) ahead of our performance in Horatio’s Garden for patients and staff of the spinal unit, the main Salisbury hospital and Salisbury Hospice. But at the 11th hour the sun appeared and with great and quick team work, The Audition took place in this most beautiful and special setting.

Thank you, Salisbury Playhouse, for the sound support, and to Horatio’s Garden and Elevate, for this collaboration with healthpitch to bring a quality performance to those who can’t get out to the theatre.

Horatio’s Garden is a charity that creates and lovingly cares for beautiful accessible gardens in NHS spinal injury.

“Moved to tears, it was glorious, filling my heart and such a privilege and I feel really joyful and happy and there’s such a buzz in the room. Thank you so much.” – Audience member

Elevate – creative arts activity programme for patients on the wards at Salisbury District Hospital.

healthpitch: delivering bespoke, accessible opera productions, centred around enhancing human connection, to promote health, wellbeing and independence across the spectrum of health and care environments.

“I loved it. I’d love to be able to sing like that. Their voices had a lot of training.” – Audience member

Perhaps it should also be mentioned that every member of the healthpitch team succumbed to the temptations of the Horatio’s Garden shop, leaving laden with candles, oils, and a special rose for Tom….

Rebecca Seymour, thank you for excellent team work and for going so many extra miles, literally and figuratively, to bring in as many of those ‘overlooked’ as possible to enjoy the performances and take part in happy gatherings.

Thank you to Waitrose Salisbury for donating the bottles of bubbly (props only!), every bit helps, and to Davina’s Fund for supporting this tour along with our collaborators.

“Absolutely amazing, my heart is fit to burst!  Laughter, tears and wonderment are the words of the day. Thank you.” Audience member

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