In summer 2017 the Irene Taylor Trust piloted Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute’s Lullaby Project for the first time in the UK. We partnered with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Resound to deliver two projects, one with refugee and migrant mothers from Praxis Community Projects, the other with fathers from a London prison.
Researcher Sara Ascenso has created the following report assessing the impact of these UK pilots, concluding that “the Lullaby Project model stands as a highly relevant initiative towards meeting the needs of both participant groups and the musicians, and the results make a strong case for its implementation in the UK.”
The full report is available to read here: The Lullaby Project Areas of Change and Mechanisms of Impact research by Sara Ascenso
The Executive Summary is below:
The Lullaby Project: Areas of Change and Mechanisms of Impact – research by Sara Ascenso
Community-based projects with music are widely expanding and
their potential towards positive psychosocial change has been consistently
evidenced. This has been particularly true with vulnerable
groups. A highly innovative project developed by Carnegie Hall’s
Weill Music Institute, recently spreading across the United States
with strong accounts of success, is the Lullaby Project. It pairs expectant
and new mothers with professional musicians, to create a
lullaby for their children. This project has now been implemented
in the UK for the first time, through two pilot experiences that
are the focus of this document. The Irene Taylor Trust led the initiative,
bringing together musicians from the Royal Philharmonic
Orchestra and two groups of participants: refugee and migrant
mothers at Praxis Community Projects (an East London charity)
and fathers at Wandsworth prison. The research aimed to understand
how the Lullaby Project was experienced by all involved.
Two sub-questions were of interest: what were the areas of
change experienced through the project and which mechanisms
were responsible for that change. Both the participants and the
musicians provided research data (N=21). Staff from the partner
institutions also took part in the assessment. The project adopted
a qualitative methodology, aimed at an in-depth phenomenological
understanding. Data were analysed through Interpretative
Phenomenological Analysis (IPA).
Research findings point to:
- The Lullaby Project impacting three key areas, for both groups of participants (refugee and migrant mothers, and fathers in prison)
i) wellbeing, through enabling a strong sense of accomplishment,
meaning and connectedness, along with the
experience of positive emotions
ii) proactivity, through promoting behaviours of initiative,
both musical and relational;
iii. reflection, through stimulating a richer perspective on life
and positive coping mechanisms.
- The Lullaby Project impacting three key areas for the group of musicians;
i) skills, including musical, personal and interpersonal;
ii)wellbeing, through promoting a sense of accomplishment,
positive emotions, meaning, connectedness and a
more sophisticated notion of occupational identity;
iii) reflection, through functioning as an eye-opener and
stimulating the development of stronger perspectives
about the issues of migration and incarceration.
- The Lullaby Project’s impact being mediated by three main mechanisms, common for all groups:
i)the project is motivating, offering both the right level of
challenge to all involved and a highly valued goal;
ii)the project is geared towards connecting at a very human
level, placing centrality on individuality, a positive agenda,
and maintaining two universals at its core, music and parental
iii) the project is guided by a strong output, a tangible and
high-quality product, very personal and long-lasting.
The Lullaby Project model stands as a highly relevant initiative
towards meeting the needs of both participant groups and the
musicians, and the results make a strong case for its implementation
in the UK.
You can listen to the beautiful music created on the pilot with refugee and migrant mothers here.