A university course encouraging music students to apply skills learned in the classroom has inspired Clarenville's Grace Rose to develop a modified music program for people with disabilities.
"In St. John’s I found there were a lot of different music groups to join, but none in Clarenville. I felt that if I started a music group like this, it could work,” said Rose, who studies music at Memorial University.
She registered for the “Music in the Community” option, developed her proposal for the modified music program and successfully received the go ahead.
“I wanted to make music accessible for everyone,” Rose offers.
She leads a 90-minute music session every week for six weeks, then records an overview of what went well and what needs to be worked on for the following week.
Rose’s motivation to start this group began last summer when she was working with Ability Employment. She grew familiar with many in the disabled community, and wanted to offer them a better music opportunity.
“There are a lot of music services for individuals who are abled, so I wanted this to be special for the disabled community,” Rose said.
The group began on Wednesday, July 24. Since then, the group has met from 1-3:30 p.m. every Wednesday. Rose based each session on four main categories: movement, playing, singing and listening. Participants dance, play various percussion instruments, sing different songs together as a group, and listen as Rose plays a piece of music with instructions to follow.
“This group has really improved my creativity, each individual has a different barrier of music, so I must adapt and modify each activity to fit the members,” she said.
Developing different ways and strategies for everyone to participate and enjoy each activity has also accelerated her thought process as a music teacher.
Rose returns to Memorial in September to complete the fourth and final year of her music degree. Her next step in life is to pursue further education, then move on to music therapy.
Rose is sad to leave this group behind in September, and would love for someone to step into her shoes and lead the group.
Contact Ability Employment at 466-1670 and ask for Grace, or by emailing her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org