Musician Spotlight – Colin Bryce & Gina Baker

ginalbaker.co.uk | thetartantenor.com 4th May 2020

Colin & Gina started working with Music in Hospitals & Care in 2016 and have since performed over 150 sessions across Scotland.  This talented duo are known and loved for their ability to engage with audience members and create moving and memorable experiences.  Their sessions are filled with fun and laughter as well as wonderful music. We spoke to Gina about their experiences.

 

What made you want to become a Music in Hospitals & Care musician?

Colin and I had both moved back to Scotland after graduating from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and were really keen to collaborate for concert work. We both love performing and agreed we’d much rather spend time playing/singing than teaching. Since we also both had experience performing to elderly audiences, myself with my own grandparents and an elderly care choir and Colin with a college outreach project, MiHC seemed like the perfect place to share our music with people who we knew could benefit hugely from it.

 

What are some highlights? Do you have a particular concert that stands out?

There are honestly so many great memories of concerts we’ve performed across the country. Some of the best have been when there are just a handful of residents and it’s a really intimate concert. That’s when you really get to connect with your audience and tailor the music to the situation in hand. Equally, last year’s Christmas party at the Scottish War Blinded Hawkhead Centre with 130+ blind and partially-sighted audience members all singing and dancing around the hall was quite spectacular. That was a concert where you could see first hand the incredible power that music has and how it both brings people together and lets them leave their daily troubles behind, if even for a song or two.

 

What has music meant to you during lockdown?

I think we’d both readily admit that music is a crucial part of our lives, both for the enjoyment it gives us and the enjoyment we know it can bring to others. Music really is the best medicine. We have both found it tricky in lockdown given how much time we would normally spend performing on a day to day basis. Our audiences are what make our concert experiences so enjoyable and fulfilling, they are why we do what we do so we are both missing that hugely. For me I have taken the time to find and learn new music (which I don’t often have the chance to do) and now throw open the windows and play the piano for our neighbours in their gardens, which has helped to bring the joy back. Despite not gigging, Colin can’t go a day without singing and with a little toddler in the house is making sure music is a big part of the parenting process. It’s amazing to see just how beneficial a tool music is even at the very young end of the scale.

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