Constella, the world’s only ballet-opera company, has launched Connecting Stars. This new initiative aims to alleviate two urgent problems brought on by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
Connecting Stars will bring the power of performance into care homes through technology. The performances are free for the care homes, while employing musicians, dancers and actors paid at professional rates for their work. Every performance is a personal, one-to-one experience.
Covid-19 has disproportionately affected those in care homes, with a quarter of all associated deaths thought to have occurred in this environment. This has forced residents to isolate from each other as well as the outside world, exacerbating the problem of loneliness that was already a shocking and worrying crisis across care homes.
This is something that Constella founder Leo Geyer experienced when supporting his own grandmother in her care home. After performing for her over Zoom, the award-winning composer was inspired to create Connecting Stars. Following her recent death, Geyer has dedicated the project to her memory.
The pandemic is also having a devastating effect on the global arts scene, with performers all over the world unable to work. Connecting Stars will support freelance artists by connecting them with care homes all over the UK.
The growing list of musicians, dancers and actors involved includes Ilona Suomalainen, Henry Rankin, Antanas Makštutis and Rachel Maby. Also performing are acclaimed violinist Philippa Mo, award-winning soprano Claire Wild, conductor and composer William Cole and harpist Olivia Jageurs.
Patron and world-famous bass baritone Sir Willard White CBE commented: “I’m excited to be part of Constella’s commendable work taking world-class music to people who are usually unable to access it and hope that everyone will join me in pledging their support.”
The programme is funded entirely by public donations. Constella has launched a JustGiving campaign with a target of £10,000, and the company is asking people to donate what they can.
If you would like to book a performance, or you’re a performer who would like to get involved, you can contact Constella via the website.
Constella founder, Leo Geyer added: “Our ambition is to support as many artists as possible and to channel their talent by giving heart-warming performances to the most vulnerable people in society. We hope that by connecting with one another we will become a beacon of positivity, happiness and unity.”
Constella’s Connecting Stars programme will offer free performances to care home residents.