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Dr Melanie Brierley: Artistic director for the elderly and people living with long-term health conditions

Melanie has a practice embedded in the arts in community health. Melanie works as a dance artist, researcher, trainer, and ISMETA registered somatic movement educator/therapist at Conscious Bodies. Melanie has spent over a decade exploring somatic dance and movement practices with people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. Melanie specifically works with people who live with neurological conditions, including Parkinson’s, Dementia, Stroke, and Muscular Dystrophy in their homes, community groups, residential/nursing homes, and outdoor spaces. Through her doctoral research (University of Roehampton, 2020), she investigated somatically informed, one to one, co-creative, and home-based dance practice as a unique response to supporting health and self-care in the Parkinson’s community.

Melanie is a Churchill Fellow of 2014 (Arts and Older People), and a pioneering dance artist and ‘practice group’ member of Dance and Parkinson’s Partnerships UK. She co-developed Arts and Dementia creative practice and training with colleagues from Pioneer Projects (North Craven) for care givers, volunteers, activity workers in care homes, and project leaders from the Cumbria Museums and Art Galleries Consortium.