Video report by Granada Reports correspondent Tim Scott Students from the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester have been staging a special concert to show the effects of music on people with Parkinson’s Disease. The event is part of an international study which suggests music can help with movement and mood in people living with the condition. A string quartet and pop music ensemble performed “Playlist for Parkinson’s LIVE,” ranging from “music for happiness” to “music to get me going.” The college says people with Parkinson’s have been integral to the project, sharing how they use music, what it means to them and how it can be beneficial. The concert was the first time these results have been shared.

Jane Gilmour took part in the study and found out how listening to rhythmic music can help people with their mobility. “It helps people if they freeze. Like getting through a doorway: suddenly you’ll freeze – there’s an imaginary line, you can’t get over that and you just cannot move,” she said. “But if you can get a rhythm in your head then you can listen to it and then suddenly you can move.” What are some of the signs of Parkinson’s disease? Handwriting getting smaller Tremors, especially in fingers, hands or feet Uncontrollable movements during sleep Limb stiffness or slow movement Changes to voice or posture Dr Dawn Rose, Senior Researcher at Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Switzerland, was involved in the research. She said: “Music can have a positive impact on people with Parkinson’s in two ways. Firstly, music with a strong beat can help cue movements. “For example, some people with Parkinson’s may shuffle and need to lengthen their stride to reduce the chances of falling.

The Playlist included:

  • Shotgun (George Ezra)

  • Mr Blue Sky (ELO)

  • Sweet Caroline (Neil Diamond)

  • Ride of the Valkyries (Richard Wagner)


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