Jane Bentley, PhD



Professional Profile
Home Country: United Kingdom
Field of Employment: Musician
Social Media: Twitter: @rhythmconnects

Jane Bentley has been working to develop the role of music with people who have been hospitalized with dementia - both as an employed musician within Scotland's National Health Service, and as a consultant and trainer working with local and national music organizations.

Jane believes that there is a lot of interest in music and dementia in Scotland, and a lot of goodwill, but no established pathways or training yet. Jane feels that everyone is reinventing the wheel in their own setting.

To further the cause of social justice in brain health, we need to look deeply into our capacity and skill for relationships, and how we value each and every member of society. We need to relate to each other in a way that maximizes connection, rather than shrinking from perceived deficits, and to create spaces and environments that allow for human flourishing, recognition, and exploration, whatever level of functioning we may have. I have been working to develop the role of music as a communicative and relational bridge with people with dementia. I seek to enhance understanding of its use and potential across a spectrum ranging from recorded music, to live, highly personalized musical care from skilled musicians. As an Atlantic Fellow at GBHI I hope to consolidate this work and learn to engage across disciplines and cultures, to develop best practices. In my spare time I enjoy heading to the hills, messing around in boats, cycling, making things, treasuring friends, doing wobbly yoga, dancing like nobody’s watching, and attempting meditation.

Bio: Jane Bentley completed her PhD at Strathclyde University, focusing on musical relationship and interaction. She has worked musically in dementia care settings for over 15 years. Alongside her freelance career as a musician, consultant and trainer, she works part-time for the National Health Service in Scotland as a musician in mental health occupational therapy services, focusing on older adults. In 2015 she was awarded a Churchill travelling fellowship, to study the role of music in the wellbeing of older adults in Asia, and visited Japan, Korea, Malaysia and Singapore.

Links: www.artbeatmusic.org