Musical Matinee Club: Brigadoon

Brigadoon was the last screening in the current Musical Matinee Club season, and we went out with a bang!

We dived fully into the Scottish theme for this ‘Everybody-Friendly’ screening of Brigadoon, kitting audience members out in tartan sashes. They looked fantastic! For a sensory treat, we added a little lavender to our mini heather bouquets to wear as “boutonnieres”. The whole auditorium smelt wonderful, especially when we waved them!

Every audience member also had some comical deer antlers made from modelling balloons, which we pointed to every time any of the actors in the film used the word “dearie”, and especially during a song called Waiting For My Dearie.

We held orange napkins aloft when they sang Down On MacConnacy Square, we waved them to replicate Cyd Charise’s underskirt as she danced, and scrunched them up to create “flame torches” during the search scene.

There are some wonderful song and dance numbers during this film, but by a long stretch, the best dancing I witnessed was during our dance break – we danced to Donald Where’s Your Troosers and Shang a Lang in keeping with the Scottish theme. We had an absolute blast!

Roll on the next season!

Musical Matinee Club: High Society

The week before Valentine’s Day, 100 or so of us gathered together to watch the romantic musical comedy “High Society”. This was a Musical Matinee Club screening, which means each audience member received a goody bag filled with fun things to do during the film and was actively encouraged to sing-a-long and dance in the aisles!

It was a glamorous affair – we each wore a brilliant bow tie, and a frill in our hair.
We waved paper doilies and balloon flowers throughout the film and popped party poppers just as Frank Sinatra kissed Grace Kelly on screen! We joined in with Louis Armstrong’s performances forming an orchestra of jazz musicians (using our paper cup trumpets), and when Frank Sinatra asked “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”, we held up signs reading “I DON’T!”.

We sang out loud, we danced throughout. The audience enjoyed the dance break mid-film so much, that they demanded we play another song so they could keep dancing!

We have an amazing team of volunteers who help make props and load the goody bags ahead of the film, and they make the whole thing run wonderfully smoothly. A massive round of applause to them!

We have one more screening to look forward to in this season.
Brigadoon on Thursday 12th March 2pm – hope to see you there!

By Suzy Harvey

Musical Matinee Club relaxed screenings are specifically designed for people who may benefit from a more informal environment, specifically those living with dementia and/or disabilities.

Image by Ron Wood
Image by Ron Wood
Image by Ron Wood
Image by Ron Wood
Image by Ron Wood
Image by Ron Wood

Musical Matinee Club: White Christmas

I never feel particularly Christmassy in the first week of December, but now that I’ve sung and danced my heart out with the audience of “White Christmas”, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

For this Musical Matinee Club screening each audience member received a red neckerchief with a piece of feather trim attached to dress up. The auditorium was awash with festivity from the start.

As we sang “ I’m dreaming of a White Christmas, with every Christmas card I write..”, we held our Christmas cards aloft, we waved our fans while the Haynes sisters sang “Sisters”, we saluted the General every time he was mentioned on screen, and we made a huge, wonderful snowy mess!
Each audience member was given a bag filled with cotton wool balls, and every time we heard the word “snow”, we threw one ball. The film features a song where they sing “snow” 31 times – you can imagine the mayhem that ensued!

The dance break (to Jingle Bell Rock) was extremely lively, worthy of top marks, in my humble opinion, but our judge on this occasion was a hard marker and gave us a 8 (after some negotiation!).

I remain inspired by so many wonderfully playful spirits in the audience, and the commitment of the staff and volunteers, putting in 100% to make this screening a truly fun-filled afternoon out to remember.

Roll on 6th February for High Society!

Musical Matinee Club: Funny Face

Funny Face is an extremely colourful film, so at this relaxed, enhanced screening, we brought as many colours from the screen into the auditorium.

During the song, “Think Pink”, we waved a length of pink toilet paper, we wore green toilet paper on our heads, while Audrey Hepburn sang “How Long Has This Been Going On”, and we wore blue tissue around our waists and heads, as we sang, “On How To Be Lovely”.

There’s a lot of talk about how they thing Audrey Hepburn’s face is perfectly “funny”, so we made our own faces a little bit funnier too, by wearing a red nose, and making it squeak every time we heard the word “funny”. Some people enjoyed the squeakers so much they squeaked them the whole way through!

The film features a trip to Paris where Fred Astaire photographs Audrey Hepburn in beautiful clothes, in glorious Parisian settings as they fall in love. During the song “Bonjour Paris”, we gave ourselves a workout, holding up a “Bonjour” sign with one hand, and an onion (to represent Paris) in the other.

S’wonderful! S’marvellous! To be spending time, singing, dancing, laughing and having a jolly good afternoon out together with friends old and new!

By Suzy Harvey