Director and Co-founder, Lifesongs, United States
Acushla Bastible is the director and co-founder of Lifesongs, an arts-in-community project facilitating the creation of original musical works in collaboration with people in nursing homes and hospice care. Lifesongs is a life-affirming, intergenerational arts program that engages local communities to heal the fear that shrouds aging, illness, and death. Through deep relationship-building, storytelling, music, and performance, Lifesongs promotes dignity and inclusion for elders and those at the end of life.
The success and vitality of the program is evidence of the power of inter-generational creative exchange and the arts to transform our relationships to aging and dying. Acushla believes that Lifesongs is, at heart, a response to a sense of loss: loss of communication with a vital part of our community, an embrace of our older selves, a celebration and a meditation on life by those who have lived. In the last couple of years, Acushla’s work with Lifesongs has focused on developing meaningful local and national programming. She is in the process of developing an online Lifesongs toolkit that will make the tools and techniques at the center of the work available to a much wider public.