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Dance of Collaboration (2017)

The value of the arts to health and well-being has been widely documented in the international domain. However, in Singapore, little has been done to integrate arts practices in healthcare settings in a meaningful way. This research paper focuses on a creative movement programme, Everyday Waltzes, conducted by artists from The Arts Fission Company (AF), a contemporary dance company in Singapore.

The programme was targeted at dementia patients receiving care from the Singapore General Hospital (SGH), with participation also from their respective caregivers. In this collaboration between the Department of Neurology at SGH, and AF, the collaborators also took on the roles of principal investigators for a piece of clinical research on the programme. 

While the clinical research led by SGH will go some way in providing more evidence to support an approach that incorporates the arts, there remains the organisational challenge of bringing together disparate stakeholders and ensuring a successful collaboration that will meet the desired objectives.

This paper, written by Ko Siew Huey and Ngiam Su-Lin of ArtsWok Collaborative, uses Everyday Waltzes as a case study to draw out valuable lessons through the lens of leadership and organisational development. These lessons may be relevant not just for artists using creative movement but also across different art-forms. The knowledge gleaned may also be useful for replicating the beneficial effects of such an integrative approach across various healthcare settings. 

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