Creighton University’s all-female a capella group performed at House of Hope Alzheimer’s Care on Saturday with the desire to invoke joy and happiness among the residents.
Creighton Crescendas are among the three a cappella groups on campus and consist of 17 individual singers that perform for various events on and off Creighton’s campus throughout the year, including an occasional visit to the nursing home.
Songs included in their performance at the nursing home were renditions of “Hey Jude” by The Beatles, “Valerie” by Amy Winehouse and “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele.
After finishing their songs, a few residents suggested the women sing “Jesus Loves Me.” The Crescendas started the tune while some of the residents sang along to the lyrics and visibly tapped their feet.
Research published by mayoclinic.org suggests, “listening to or singing songs can provide emotional and behavioral benefits for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. Musical memories are often preserved in Alzheimer’s disease because key brain areas linked to musical memory are relatively undamaged by the disease.”
“It’s a special feeling to make eye contact with someone and see a spark in their eye and a tap in their foot,” said Kaity Szymborski, the vice president of the Crescendas and a College of Arts and Sciences junior. “Even better when they start singing along. I’m so happy that I’m able to bring music into people’s lives.”
“Living in a nursing home can be kind of monotonous,” said Erin Eberhard, president of Crescendas and a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences. “So the residents love having the young people around...Getting them involved is so fun.”