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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.

The Government estimates that 670,000 people nationwide have dementia today, and the Alzheimer's Society estimate that more than one million people will have dementia by 2021. Tanya Myers' insightful play, Inside out of Mind, is uniquely focused on those who care for people with dementia and has already had a profound impact on NHS health care workers in the East Midlands as well as on those caring for family members or friends.

National tour

Shona Powell, Director of Lakeside Arts Centre, said: "Lakeside is thrilled that following a hugely successful premiere at Lakeside in 2013, we're able to take this production on national tour, to reach thousands of new audience members and to make a real and lasting impact in the care sector"

Peter Knott, Area Director, Arts Council England, said: "Arts and culture can have great benefits for people's health and wellbeing. It's great to see arts organisations finding ways to work with the NHS to support the creation of dementia-friendly environments for patients. The national tour of Inside Out of Mind will help forge new connections between theatre makers, healthcare workers, carers and the wider public. I hope it encourages conversations about dementia care and inspires people to think compassionately and empathetically."

Public engagement

Vice Chancellor of The University of Nottingham, Professor David Greenaway, said "This unique project is a perfect example of academic research, knowledge exchange and public engagement coming together through the medium of the arts. We are extremely proud of this complementary partnership between our public arts centre, Meeting Ground Theatre Company and the Institute of Mental Health."

Inside out of Mind will tour to six venues around the UK in spring 2015.

This artilce is adapted from a University of Nottingnam press release