Kids’ Classics, directed by cellist Gráinne Hope, is a programme that delivers monthly music workshops to children in the hospital schools of Temple Street Children’s University Hospital, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, and The National Children’s Hospital, Tallaght. First piloted in 2008 with funding from the National Concert Hall, professional musicians deliver educational and interactive workshops in a fun-filled way to children between the ages of 4 and 15 years. Ward visits for children who may not be able to attend workshops due to medical restrictions are also provided for.
Kids’ Classics received funding in 2011 from The Community Foundation for Ireland through an anonymous donor who will support the present programme until the end of 2013.
In 2012, Kids’ Classics recorded a CD of ‘Lullaby Classics’ on behalf of The National Concert Hall and The Community Foundation for Ireland. This CD is given to parents and children throughout the hospitals during the ongoing programme visits.
In addition to the regular workshops in the children’s hospitals, Kids’ Classics and Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, were involved in the first music residency to take place in a Children’s Hospital in Ireland from April to June 2012. The residency involved providing training and support for Kids’ Classics musicians and hospital staff along with a series of music and drum workshops, ward visits and concerts. This residency brought over 40 professional musicians into the hospital over the three-month period and was funded by the Arts Council and Dublin City Council.
Feedback from the children’s hospitals:
‘Thoroughly enjoyed the music. Very relaxing and set a nice atmosphere in the unit.’
‘It was beautiful and up lifting for all of my family. Both I, my husband and our girls feel like we were outside!’
‘Music seems to transport you to a relaxed state away from drips, drains and beeping machines. It is wonderful for the wonderful children that attend here and also their worried parents. To see my daughter’s face light up as she sings a long to the pieces she knows is fantastic. The fact she adores music, singing of any sort, having it in the hospital where she can see the instruments is amazing.’
‘Brilliant and interesting opportunity for children to mix and enjoy music and musical instruments they would otherwise not encounter.’