Meet our Live Music Managers

5th September 2022

Music in Hospitals & Care’s Music Delivery team works throughout the UK in partnership with health and care organisations to share the healing power of live music.

We have four Live Music Managers in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, North of England, and South of England and Channel Islands. Each of them bring experience in music and health. You can also meet our Live Music Coordinators.

Live Music Manager Scotland – Kirstyn Knowles

Hi, I’m Kirstyn. I might be a familiar face to many as I have worked for Music in Hospitals & Care for many years as part of the Music Delivery Team in Scotland. Working as Live Music Coordinator has given me lots of relevant experience that I will carry forward in my role as Live Music Manager.

Prior to joining the charity I studied Music Composition at University and spent most of my time writing music and performing in bands and orchestras. I went on to work in mental health social care where I quickly discovered the power of music in helping to connect with people and develop supportive relationships. This work has given me a breadth of experience that I carry with me in all aspects of my life.

Joining Music in Hospitals & Care allowed me to combine my interests and my musical knowledge and experience of health and social care have been invaluable in my work for the charity. Sharing and exploring music plays such a huge part in my own health and wellbeing and I feel very fortunate to work for a charity that allows others to have that experience.

I have seen the charity grow and develop over many years. In recent years, the resilience and commitment of musicians, staff and the wider charity has been incredible. I am so proud of what we have been able to achieve and I am excited about what we are going to achieve together in the coming months and beyond.

Live Music Manager Wales and Northern Ireland – Katrina Rigby

I was very pleased to join Music in Hospitals & Care in March 2022. I was born and raised in Wales and I am currently based in South East Wales. I am a musician, playing the cello and piano, and also a singer songwriter, and I have enjoyed performing with a range of choirs and ensembles, including Newport Symphony Orchestra.

I studied psychology at university and I have worked in a range of third sector and public sector organisations, including social housing, higher education, and both small local and large national charities. During my career I have gained experience in project management, research and evaluation, and governance, with particular interests in partnership working, social inclusion, mental health, and community arts.

Working for Music in Hospitals & Care has given me the opportunity to bring together my love of music with my passion for third sector project development and partnership working, finding ways to work together to achieve common goals and share learning on what works and what we could do differently. I’m looking forward to expanding our work in Wales and Northern Ireland, building relationships with health and care settings, and supporting our musicians to bring live music to those who might not otherwise experience it.

Attending live music sessions, and seeing the skill and care of our musicians, and the joy and comfort that it brings to patients, care home residents and staff, is always inspiring and reminds me why we do what we do and why it is so important to keep building on and improving the way that we work.

Live Music Manager North of England – Andrea Mills

I am very excited to get the opportunity to return to a role within a charity setting, combining my work experience in health and social care and to help share live music with those who could most benefit from experiencing it in its many forms.

In my earlier years, I studied music at school, where I sang and then went on to study Performing Arts at college. I then studied Literature and Film Studies at university and went on to work in advice, guidance and training, having moved to a new area, which led me to specialise in mental health, working with carers for a national charity and then to study a Master’s Degree in Social Work. I have since worked as a Social Worker for a local authority.

My passion for the arts has never left me and music is in my blood. I have recently dusted off my piano and have started learning again, as well as joining a samba drumming band, having been inspired to share live music with the local and wider communities.

I understand the healing power of music and I have been able to promote this as a Social Worker, however I needed to strike a work life balance, particularly following the pandemic and with having young children, which is what led me to Music in Hospitals & Care. I have loved listening to the live music sessions by some wonderful musicians and I am very excited as we commence project work exploring how we can best support people who have various forms of dementia. I love to get out and about, so it has been a real pleasure to get to settings and meet musicians, residents, patients and staff.

Live Music Manager South of England and Channel Islands – Sarah Northall

Heya! I’m Sarah Northall the Live Music Manager for the South of England and Channel Islands. I’ve been in post just over 6 months and have over 8 years of experience in arts and health care.

Some of my previous roles have included, activities coordinator, day centre organiser, and a freelance creative and therapeutic arts facilitator. I specialise in working with older people and have recently gained a Master of Arts in Ageing and Gerontology.

My interest in the benefits of music was first sparked whilst delivering creative music sessions with a resident who was living in a care home after having a stroke. Since then I have worked with children aged 3 to adults aged 103.

In the coming months I’m looking forward to continuing to getting to know our musicians better and developing ways we can share skills. As we continue to see an increase in regular music projects being set up in hospitals, I’m excited about the positive impact our wonderful live music will have on patients and staff. I’m also looking forward to celebrating Music in Hospitals and Care’s 75th Birthday in 2023.

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