Exercise the brain and be transfixed by the music

10th October 2003 at 01:00
John Cairney and Neil Munro, how could you possibly fail to have mentioned the wonderful contribution to the Tapestry "Creativity, Music and the Mind" conference made by Carla Hannaford and Ahti Mohala? (TESS, September 26).

That 1,000 children sat transfixed by Ben Zander and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra was, I believe, in no small measure due to the brain gym exercises done beforehand to prepare them for the "colour, emotion, story and intricacies of each musical offering". Carla and Ahti conducted these exercises and I know they worked for me.

Furthermore, as well as running an excellent workshop during which she demonstrated more brain gym exercises, telling us how they worked, explained early foetal development and why movement and sound are the key to the growth of the brain and learning, Carla went on in the main conference to explain, among other things, the importance of being "in flow" and why it is an antidote to stress.

She left us with the Chinese character for "listen", which is made up of the characters for you, eyes, undivided attention, heart and ear. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all listened like that? Take note, John and Neil.

Ann MacInnes Talla Road Glasgow

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