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By Ron Coleman

Dementia The Musical

Running time
70 mins (no interval)

About Dementia The Musical

Dementia the Musical!  is a radical new musical theatre production by Ron Coleman, Scottish poet and writer living with dementia, in collaboration with renowned director Magdalena Schamberger and one of Britain’s top jazz musicians Sophie Bancroft as composer and musical director. Additional music is by esteemed songwriter Andrew Eaton-Lewis and design by Karen Tennent.  

Written for and with those living with dementia this brand-new musical is based on the campaigning work of three of Scotland’s longest serving dementia activists James McKillop, Nancy McAdam & Agnes Houston, and the fight they have led to ensure people with dementia have a voice in what happens in their lives. Dementia the Musical is a funny but moving production telling the history of Scottish dementia activism and their role front and centre of it.  

Set in the not-too-distant future where the ‘British Bill of Rights’ has replaced the ‘European Convention on Human Rights’ and is being used by organisations and care-home owners to deny residents their rights to a family life by allowing the system to control what individuals with dementia can do, where they live, who can visit and when they can visit. The musical sees the three activists as characters reimagined to be back in their youth, being brought to a care home in Dundee to face a tribunal, led by the character ‘Rigid System’ that is accusing them of both not having mental capacity and of being troublemakers. At the end of the performance the audience will be asked to reach a verdict, either supporting the dementia activists right to live a fulfilled life at home in spite of their diagnosis or to confine them indefinitely to a care home until their demise.