Bringing the outside in
Reconnecting people with the world.
What we do
Fragments is a pop-up theatre experience made especially for people living in care, as well as their friends, families and carers. We totally transform spaces inside care homes, creating installations which are then animated by performers and stay open for a whole week.
Our aim is to recreate places that may no longer be accessible for those living in care, choosing to focus on new experiences rather than work which focuses on reminiscence.
In future, we are aiming to tour to different venues, including theatres, care homes, hospices, hospitals and community centres. We believe everyone should be able to engage with high-quality theatre, regardless of their age or where they live.
Talk to us today about working together!
Oak Tree Park: Bringing the Outside in
In our very first project, we brought the outside in, creating a pop-up park in the second lounge space at Oak Tree Lodge care home in Leeds. Our park came complete with trees, a bandstand and a fountain. The park even came with an immersive soundscape, with the sounds of a park played on a 24 hour loop, as well as the smells of a park gently diffused through the air. We also programmed a week of activities to take place in Oak Tree Park:
- Classical music featuring musicians from Opera North.
- Storytelling with local performer Matthew Bellwood
- Rock and roll classics with local Leeds artists, Jonny and Thys
- Painting and Lawn Games with children from a local school
- Massage and movement
- A sing along session with local musician Claire-Marie Seddon
Our immersive soundscape was made in collaboration with sound designer Chris Hughes to create a 360-degree soundscape that changes depending on the time of day, replicating bird song and laughter. Chris's concept is that, if we have windows to let in natural light, why do we not have windows for natural sounds? Our hope is that this park will enable residents to access bottom-shelf* memories and improve their sense of wellbeing.
We are so grateful to Anchor Care Homes, and in particular Jo Bailey, who have been so welcoming and adventurous in letting us plant over 50 flowers in Oak Tree Lodge's cinema room.
None of this would have been possible without LS2 Collective our designers. They have patiently taken our designs and turned them into a reality, baking care into every decision.
We would finally like to thank Unlimited Theatre who were the first people to invest in this idea and continue to be really supportive rockstars!
*To help us rationalise how someone living with dementia may be experiencing the world, experts use the bookshelf analogy. We all have two bookshelves: our factual memory (e.g. a flat-pack Billy bookcase from IKEA) and our emotional memory (an heirloom bookcase made from the strongest oak). On both bookshelves, the books at the top represent recent factual and emotional memories and the shelves underneath represent a period of time, from childhood to old age.
For someone living with dementia, the shelves are shaken and the first to be damaged is the less reliable factual memory bookcase, which affects logic, reason and simple things such as remembering times and dates. The books on the top of the shelf of the factual bookcase begin to fall, whereas our sturdy emotional memory bookcase stays intact and the books remain on the shelves.
As dementia develops, these bookcases get tested regularly and books begin to fall at a quicker rate. Our emotional oak bookcase remains intact for longer, but books still fall from the top shelves and may leave someone living with dementia with only their older bottom-shelved emotional memories from a different time. For example, a person may remember clearly how they felt as a child or teenager but not recall what they did the day before. However, as always, every individual living with dementia is different and experiences the world in a totally new way.