Eric Whitacre supports new hospital classical music project

1 August 2013, 17:04 | Updated: 2 August 2013, 13:35

Eric Whitacre is the ambassador for a new composition project, in which 15 young composers are writing brand new music to help patients at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.

Patients at a London hospital will soon be enjoying classical music as part of their recovery. A total of 15 young composers have been chosen to write an 'audio guide' to the hospital's art collection, where each piece is described by a specific piece of music - rather than a verbal guide.

The idea behind the project, championed by the Chelsea and Westminster Health Charity, is to help patients recover and relax. Patients are using the musical guided tour to help them move further off the ward each day, and motivate them to get out of bed when there is little incentive to do so.

Eric Whitacre, ambassador for the project, said he was honoured to support the hospital's ground-breaking work: "Their vision to create works of art for the healing environment will provide benefits today and a legacy for the future," he said. "This is a tremendous opportunity for young composers to embrace, and a complex challenge. I look forward to hearing their work."

All the patients who trialled the guides said they experienced a psychological lift and said they felt less bored after trying them out. Musicians from the Royal College of Music will be recording the pieces next year.

young composers at chelsea and westminster

Picture: The 15 young composers selected to write the art-inspired pieces. L-R Daisy Fancourt (Chelsea and Westminster Health Charity), Tomas Challenger, Juan Carlos Vasquez, Amal Lad, Katie Chatburn, Daniel Andreas Baboulene, Isaac Ssebandeke, Nick Pike, Mika Sawai, Chloe Louise Potter, Soosan Lalavar, Chris Williams, Marcos Fernandez, Joseph Currie, Charlotte Harding, Chris Roe, William Mival (Head of Composition, Royal College of Music)