The Music & Memory Film Project:
Documenting Music & Dementia through Film

 

Student Short Films from Spring 2018 - Bloomington, Indiana

"Film made at Jill’s House in Bloomington, Indiana by undergraduate students Rachel Desmarais and Rachel Jackson in Dr. Jennie Gubner's Music & Memory Course at IU, Spring 2018. This film aims to spread awareness of the impact music can have and the joy that comes with reconnecting to passions from another time in life. For more information on how Music and Memory helps elderly residents and facility patients, and how to volunteer or to donate iPods, please visit http://www.MusicandMemory.org." - IU Students Rachel Desmarais and Rachel Jackson

"In this video, students of Music and Memory class had the great opportunity of working with John. John currently resides in Jill's House, and he is currently battling dementia as well as recovering from a stroke. The students learned how to interact with John through sports, old stories, and music and they ended up becoming great friends. Listening to music brought back many memories John had with his wife Gerri, his time working at Indiana University, and stories of his time in the Naval Academy. The power of music and its memory-producing potential through listening to old, impactful songs is shown in the film and proves a great opportunity for those having difficulty interacting with loved ones battling similar issues." - IU students Matthew Harrington & Brian LaManna, Spring 2018

“This film, set at the Better Day Club in Bloomington, Indiana, is intended to document the lessons learned from our time with Donna, a kind and caring individual who suffered from a stroke a few years ago that impaired her ability to speak. Through time, understanding, encouragement and patience, we learned that communicating with individuals who have difficulties doing so is worthwhile, and that everyone deserves the chance to be heard, regardless of the effort it may require.” - IU students Daniel Sego and Flannery Bell, Spring 2018

"Following in the footsteps of the Music and Memory program, Indiana University students in the Music and Memory class get to know senior citizens living with varying stages of dementia, coming up with playlists of meaningful music for them to keep on MP3 players. We worked with Carol, a woman with a lifelong appreciation for many kinds of music. This film documents the time we spent with Carol and her friends and family while chatting and listening to some of her favorite songs." - IU Students Adriane Pontecorvo & Eric Hellman, Spring 2018

"The purpose of this music and memory project is to help those struggling with dementia or Alzheimer's to better connect to their past through the power of music. We were lucky enough to spend months with the lovely Jim creating two playlists to put on an Ipod for him that contain some of his favorite songs. This personalized playlist is intended to help Jim reconnect to his loved ones and the world through memories triggered by music." - IU Students Reagan Allen and Sophia Bingaman, Spring 2018

“This short film was was shot at Jill’s House in Bloomington, Indiana. Jill's House is an assisted living & memory care facility. We made this film as part of Dr. Jennie Gubner’s Music & Memory course at IU. The music and memory program works with elders to promote health and wellness using personalized music playlists on MP3 players.” - IU students Maggie Drake & Bhumi Patel

Student Short Films from Fall 2017 - Bloomington, Indiana

In this film we see how Mabel, who has lost most of her conversational communication skills, is still able to read, sing, and play piano! Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Jordyn Kruse and Jalen Bullock, Fall 2017

In this film, students Carl and Amy help Bill reconnect with his lifelong love of Rock music. As part of the process of building his playlist the students go to Bill’s house to help him unbox his record collection! Film made at the Better Day Club in Bloomington Indiana by students Carl Newmark & Amy Stroud, Fall 2017

In this film we learn about Joe’s love of his family, old cowboy songs and movies, and yodeling! Film made at the Better Day Club in Bloomington Indiana by students Johnathan Frew & Cheyenne Speck, Fall 2017

In this film, students use music to connect with Frank’s love for storytelling and adventure, his love for his wife, and memories of his time overseas in the Army. Film made at Better Day Club in Bloomington Indiana by students Carl Newmark & Amy Stroud, Fall 2017.

Using music, Ruth is transported back to her childhood in the 1930s, triggering memories about the shared radio in her childhood home, car rides, and fiddle music at the country fair. Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Marissa Tabor and Valerie Dyer, Fall 2017.

Throughout the semester Lynn worked with students Marissa and Valerie, he carried a small notebook where he jotted down names of songs he hadn’t heard in years that he wanted added to his playlist. Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Marissa Tabor and Valerie Dyer, Fall 2017.

Jan is a poet and dementia activist. In their time together Fisher and Jade decided to digitize Jan’s old vinyl’s as tracks on an iPod so she could hear the familiar cracks and pops of her favorite records. Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Jadelyn Reeves and Fisher Cherechinsky, Fall 2017.

This film tells the story of Honey and Zetta, two friends brought closer together through the Music and Memory project. It highlights the ways this program can be used as a valuable form of socialization among residents at care facilities. Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Elizabeth Corliss, Nicholas Powell, Jordyn Kruse and Jalen Bullock, Fall 2017.

Martha plays a blue ukulele, has a sharp sense of humor, and loved spending time with Grace and Nick building a playlist of her favorite songs. The film highlights the many faces of Martha, illustrating the complexity of daily life living with dementia. Film made at Jill's House in Bloomington Indiana by students Elizabeth Corliss, Nicholas Powell, Fall 2017.

Through music, students help retired vocal professor Francis relive her love for opera and singing the national anthem for the Duke basketball games. Film made at the Better Day Club in Bloomington Indiana by students Shannon Parker and Dylan Howe, Fall 2017.


Student Short Films from Spring 2017 -  Bloomington, Indiana 

This film chronicles our first semester bringing the Music and Memory program to The Better Day Club, an Adult Day Center in Bloomington, Indiana. It features Cathleen Weber, director of the Better Day Club, speaking about the value of this program, as well as many club members illustrating many different ways that music can benefit older adults living with dementia and other cognitive impairments including an unforgettable scene of 101 year-old Bruce singing “It’s a Wonderful World.” This collaborative film was made in Spring 2017 by Anna Lubbers, Wesley Corey, Zoe Schrader, Elizabeth Sexton, Sarah Bobby and Nathan Sidell, all undergraduate students at IU Bloomington.

In this film we are introduced to Glen who has recently had a stroke causing some memory loss. We see Glen teaching my students about his love for opera, our conversations with Glen about music and the brain, and the students teaching Glen to use his iPod to promote exercise. This short film was made in Spring 2017 by Gloria Kleihban and Emily Mangione, both undergraduate students at IU Bloomington.

This film tells the Music and Memory story of Bob, who has many daily struggles due to his dementia. The film features conversations with his music therapist, Deb Phelps, about the therapeutic role of music in Bob’s life, as well as scenes of Bob listening to songs on his iPod that bring him joy and stories of his life as a pilot. This short film was made in Spring 2017 by Marli Caplan and Normeen Siddiqui, both undergraduate students at IU Bloomington.



Gabrielle’s film is a beautiful and powerful story that highlights the somber challenges of navigating a family member’s journey living with dementia, as well as the the many ways music can connect us to people we love. This short film was made in Spring 2017 by Maggie Kennedy and Will Shankman, both undergraduate students at IU Bloomington.


Student Short Films from Spring 2015 - Waterville, Maine 

In this powerful short film we see Russ transformed and brought out of a disconnected state when he is reconnected to his love of fiddle music and clogging. Russ’s wife was hesitant for him to participate in our program, saying it had been a long time since he had been alert. This film was made by students Sarah Hoffman and Paige Buell in the course "Music in Life, Music as Culture" at Colby College in Waterville, Maine in Spring 2016.

In this film we see Esther reconnecting to her love of Tammy Wynette and Rock and Roll triggering early memories for Robert that he thought he had lost. We also hear Vicki Dyer of Lakewood Continuing Care center speaking about how their facility became involved in the Music and Memory Project, and the facility’s physician, Dr. Preston talking about the health benefits of music. This film was made by students Lucy Soucek, Aaron Canter, and Olivia Gould in the course “Music in Life, Music as Culture” at Colby College in Waterville, Maine in Spring 2016.