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Ground-breaking play focusing on dementia carers gets national tour

Arts Council England has awarded Lakeside Arts Centre £186,893 to tour Inside out of Mind nationally to the widest possible audience of health care workers and the public.

Inside out of Mind is rooted in academic research conducted by IMH researchers on dementia care wards in the East Midlands and was commissioned by the Managed Innovation Network — a partnership involving Meeting Ground Theatre Company, Nottingham Lakeside Arts and NHS professionals and initiated by Professor Justine Schneider of the Institute of Mental Health at The University of Nottingham. The play premiered at Lakeside Arts Centre, University of Nottingham in June 2013 where it was seen by 2,200 people including 1,000 NHS professionals.

Read more: Ground-breaking play focusing on dementia carers gets national tour

About Inside Out

Inside Out of Mind is an innovative project which has brought together ethnographic researchers with theatre practitioners to tackle the challenge of dementia care. 

Writer Tanya Myers and Director Stephen Lowe of Meeting Ground initially worked with researchers Simon Bailey and Kezia Scales to create a workshop production which brilliantly illustrated the multiple realities of life on a dementia ward. 

In July 2011, an invited audience across a broad spectrum of interest groups saw the work in progress. The play premiered at Lakeside Arts Centre, University of Nottingham in June 2013 where it was seen by 2,200 people including 1,000 NHS professionals.

Inside Out Trailer

altInside Out Programme.pdf [Adobe Acrobat PDF - 821.73 KB]

altInside Out biographies [Adobe Acrobat PDF - 956.87 KB]


A truly remarkable piece. I found the soundscape particularly affecting.  Of particular value was the balanced portrayal of behaviour and the issues.  Thank you.  

David Connelly, Clinical psychologist, Mental Health services for Older People

Keep on with paradox. YES let‘s talk/workshop manikins/animate the inanimate. 

Stephen John

It was a very powerful and emotional presentation beautifully portrayed in a such compelling and sen-sitive way. It touched me deeply and I have given much thought to it since. In my view, a full produc-tion is a must and I believe would be an excellent tool to enlighten a wide cross-section of society.

Linda Francis 

I found the play very interesting and I sincerely hope that it gets a wider audience. Perhaps it could be told that they are allowed to laugh! 

C. Latham 

Simply moving, excellent piece of work. It refreshed my reasons as to why I choose to work in the area of dementia. It is vital that those staff on the shop floor see this production. As the lady who played Grace said—we are all getting older—who is going to care for us? 

Sharon Howe, Modern Matron 

A very beautiful observation of a world that’s too often hidden from public view. The work captures the perspective of and voices of those with dementia and their carers and weaves these together. The picture presented is both provocative and accessible.  

Laura Slinger 

Really enjoyed the play, brought me to tears.  Very insightful and true to reality on the wards with some heart-wrenching aspects of ‘oh God—I have seen that’.  ‘Grace’ was excellent. 

Tracey Elvin 

Excellent production and highlighted very interesting issue—I think however that the point really needs to be clearly made that this is about a mental health ward and not an acute medical [health care of older people] ward. What you would see there is very different – in terms of the busyness of the staff and the noise levels.  

Sarah Goldberg 

Theatre seemed a particularly appropriate form for an area where “we cone to exist in the memories of other people” - starts to define identity. How you “scale it up” into a full play may close down the openness it has at the moment.  The move into dance seems to be a fruitful development—leaving the text loose, fluid & expressive & play off against physical images & movements.  

Frank Abbot  

Fantastic play, very easy to watch and the time went really quickly.  I think that it has to be stressed that this is a ward environment and not a care home.  Wards are noisy, busy, well staffed, care homes are very poorly staffed but are there to make a profit, no other reason. Needs to be funnier as on wards people do have a lot of laughs, which makes people want to go to work.   

This worked so well, even though I know a lot of what was coming, I was still ‘blown away’.  It would even work with these scenes presented as a self-contained play.  

Gordon Stoner  

Amazing and powerful piece. Balanced, accurate—if painful.  Not anti-NHS, should be seen by staff within services providing care. 

Rachel  Munton, Director East Midlands Academic Health Science Network