Huge congrats to Leeds Playhouse

Super cool news that Leeds Playhouse has been announced as finalists in the National Dementia Care Awards’ ‘Outstanding Arts and Creativity in Dementia Care’ category. The the Every Third Minute Festival, which took place earlier this year, was a huge success so it’s great to see the Playhouse get well-deserved recognition for it.

Every Third Minute was the very first theatre festival of its kind. It celebrated theatre, dementia and hope – a truly unique blend of performances that really made our local community think. It was curated by people living with dementia and their supporters so it truly was a spectacularly thoughtful and impactful festival. .

It happened this year between 9 February and 31 March and was attended by over 7,500 people. Though I only personally managed to go along to see a brand new stage adaptation of Lisa Genova’s novel Still Alice, there were 11 productions in total to raise awareness and provide amazing theatre for the city. To further generate conversation and impact, the Playhouse ran four training programmes and 16 workshops. Absolutely amazing, powerful stuff. 

Leeds Playhouse Theatre and Dementia Research Associate Nicky Taylor said: “Our Every Third Minute festival placed people living with dementia in decision-making positions to celebrate their potential and creativity, and to amplify their voices to change perceptions and attitudes. We’re absolutely delighted to be recognised by the National Dementia Care Awards, and thrilled to be 2018 finalists.”

Every Third Minute Festival Curator Rosa Peterson said: “It’s been a privilege and a lot of fun working with everybody on Every Third Minute. We might have dementia but don’t write us off yet, we are still going strong!”

Leeds Playhouse’s innovative approach to working with people living with dementia has been acknowledged by the National Dementia Care Awards before. The Playhouse even won the Outstanding Dementia Care Innovation category in 2015 for the introduction of dementia friendly performances. The Alzheimer’s Society has also previously given Leeds Playhouse a national award, showing just how valued this important work is. 

Leeds Playhouse runs regular activities for people living with dementia, including Our Time sessions for people living with dementia and their partners, Peer Support Sessions in partnership with other cultural organisations throughout the city, and Dementia Friendly performances. 

The National Dementia Care award-winners will be announced at the UK Dementia Congress on 8 November – fingers crossed for Leeds Playhouse, who would be very deserving winners. 

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