Opera Tea with Art in the Gart Gartnavel Royal Hospital, Glasgow

It’s a Sunday afternoon at Gartnavel Royal Hospital in Glasgow. Patients, their family members and staff begin to gather within a public area in the hospital and are met by musicians: singers, pianists or cellists and violinists. An hour of well-known opera favourites and arias soar to the top of the building. Here, live music is designed to be shared and to encourage service users, staff, family members and people from the local community to come together to be a part of these afternoon concerts.

Fiona Sinclair, Volunteer Services Manager at the hospital, manages the ‘Art in the Gart’ programme, which brings multiple art forms, performances and activities into the wards and communal spaces within the hospital.

‘The Opera Tearoom is the legacy of one man, an opera singer, using our acute mental health services. Since the ethos of Art in the Gart is to respond to the passions, needs and likes of patients, the Opera Tearoom was born. Carmen was his favourite opera and so our first Sunday concert was “Carmen with Cupcakes”. The concerts still continue on a Sunday, once a month and with the participation of Music in Hospitals musicians.’
Fiona Sinclair, Volunteer Services Manager – North West Sector & Lead, Art in the Gart

“Your musicians have just finished their Sunday live music session and it has to be one of the most moving, participative sessions I have seen.”
Member of staff, Gartnavel Royal Hospital, Glasgow

  • Both patients and staff came away from the concert with smiles on their faces and a positive feeling.
    Member of staff, Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, Aberdeen

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