AHA! 2014 in Review
2014 was a fun-filled year for AHA!, with growth of existing projects, expansion of workshops and embarking on new endeavors.
Therapeutic Arts: AHA! supported music therapist, Tom Curry, at St. Martha’s Regional Hospital throughout 2014. We are delighted that Tom has been hired by the hospital for this position in 2015. AHA! also supported visual artist, Noella Murphy, who spent an afternoon each week at the hospital. To see more about music therapy at SMRH. See Video
Thundertales: This AHA! storytelling program for youth continued through the spring and summer at St. Andrew Junior School, the People’s Place Library, Paqtnkek First Nations Health Centre and the Alaya Chan Centre. In the fall we were able to expand the program to include H.M. MacDonald Elementary School, St Andrew’s Consolidated School and East Antigonish Centre/Academy. Five artists were involved in facilitating the program, Amberlee Boulton, Adele MacFarlane, Stacy Doiron, Noella Murphy and Mary Beth Carty. During this time, the facilitators were able to create a toolkit of lesson plans for the program. Read more
The Eldertree Project: Artists gathered stories from elders at the RK MacDonald Nursing Home and Highland-Crest Home and shaped the tales and songs into a performance, with music, photos, dance and storytelling. ‘The Road Home” is a moving tribute to our elders, with three highly acclaimed ‘full-house’ performances in December. “The Road Home” will be reprised in March 2015 at the Bauer Theatre at St. Francis Xavier University. Read More
Imagine Antigonish: John Graham-Pole and Dorothy Lander undertook the remarkable and ambitious project of collecting and restoring old community photos, and grouping them on banners by the social determinants of health. The exhibit garnered much attention at the Highland Games, and has also been viewed at the People’s Place, on the ST FX campus, and at the Heritage Museum. Read More
AHA! created its first film, Play to be Well, in the summer of 2014, with local filmmaker Corinne Dunphy. Mary Beth Carty facilitated the writing of the AHA! song to accompany the video. See Video
Workshops: In the fall, AHA! began a collaborative workshop series with ASAP (All-of-us Society for Art Presentation), hosting guest arts-health practitioners from other parts of Nova Scotia in local weekend workshops. The first weekend, with Jerry Granelli was a resounding success! Read More
AHA! hosted Natalie Abdou in her moving performance, “Sitting with Death”, and UK Winston Churchill Trust Fellow, writer Romi Jones, in a discussion of her work with patients with Alzheimer’s Disease.
In November, AHA! was represented at the Power of the Arts Conference in Ottawa, as Adele MacFarlane, Stacy Doiron and Noella Murphy gave a captivating overview of Thundertales in the Mental and Physical Health workshop. Read More
Tom Curry, Rosemary Curry and Corinne Dunphy all hosted fundraising events in support of AHA! activities. We are most grateful to them and to all our private donors for supporting AHA! in our mission of fostering creative expression for community health. Read More