News and blogs

We are inviting you to contribute to a group composition.

Attention all Good Vibrations participants and Gamelan Room users! To celebrate the launch of our new digital Gamelan Room we are inviting you to contribute to a collaborative composition. We’d love you to write a short piece of music…

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Resonate Sheffield 2024-2025

Resonate Sheffield is back! Resonate is a community music project using Indonesian gamelan instruments, based at Highfield Trinity Church. Sessions are free to participate – though donations are welcome. No musical experience is needed. Sessions run Wednesdays from 10:30AM-12:30PM,…

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In Conversation: Loophole Music

Fay, an occupational therapist, and Kieran, a Loophole Music facilitator, talk about one of our secure hospital projects and the impact it has had on one particular service user. Fay: Dean has been in hospital for over ten years.…

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My experience of leaving prison during the pandemic

  January 2022 Author and artist Ruinbow writes for Good Vibrations about their experience of leaving prison during the pandemic.   People imagine that being released from prison would be a euphoric moment, but it is actually really stressful. Counterintuitively,…

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My Good Vibrations experience and why it works

November 2021 Author: Benjamin Yacoub, Talent Manager at Twisted Passion Ent Entering prison with a lengthy sentence to some is the end of the world. Although many give up and get involved with the drug culture to escape the…

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From prison art to lockdown art to…

Author and artist Ruinbow writes for Good Vibrations about how he got into art while in prison, his experience of being an art mentor, and his drive to make art accessible for all.   I did not take to…

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The wheelchair is invisible

On 11 April, Linda Yates, Margaret Smith and Heather Strohschein presented The wheelchair is invisible – a conversation about accessibility and inclusivity in the time of Covid  at MACSEM 2021, a conference organised by the Mid-Atlantic Chapter for the…

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Good Vibrations’ film premiere

On the evening of 21st May, Good Vibrations hosted the film premiere of Beyond Performance, within an intimate, online event attended by the artists who created it, plus an invited audience. The film combines an eclectic mix of shadow…

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Opening Up – Collective Joy in Prison and Beyond

‘Hozho is not something you can experience on your own, the eagles tell us as they lock talons in the stratosphere and fall to the earth as one.  Hozho is interbeauty.’  Lyla June Johnston – Hozho   As a…

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Music as a form of communication and healing

Guest Author: Anu Koechli As human beings one of the most fascinating elements of our species is our creative capabilities with the creation and development of music over tens of thousands of years. Recent technological developments over the last few…

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Design and build a new digital gamelan

Author: Good Vibrations National charity, Good Vibrations is calling for developers to submit proposals to design and build a new digital gamelan. Organisations and individuals who are interested should view and download the full brief here. Deadline for expressions…

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Remembering our patron Rahayu Supanggah

We are very saddened that our wonderful patron, Rahayu Supanggah, has passed away. He supported Good Vibrations for many years and was an incredibly talented composer and musician. He lived a long and full life, with over fifty years…

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Self soothing practice

(Guest author: Elma Chapman) Self Soothing Practice Finger Holds The Ancient Art of Harmonising life energy in the body My destiny is in my own hands – Mary Burmeister The truth is that within each of us lies the…

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A facilitator point of view

Some thoughts about working for Good Vibrations as a facilitator – Laurence Rugg “Punishment is the last and least effective instrument in the hands of the legislator for the prevention of crime.”  John Ruskin (1819 – 1900 art critic…

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Would you like to be described as ‘mental’?

Guest author: Elma Chapman Having experienced 13 episodes of detainment in hospital, I cannot ignore that ‘Mental’ Health is an important part of my Life Journey, but it does not identify who I am. It made me reflect on…

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A moment in the spotlight

Jonathan Hollow, Chair of Good Vibrations, writes about the experience of preparing for a BBC Radio 4 Appeal. “Why don’t we apply for the Radio 4 Appeal?” our trustee Pete Knapton asked at one of our board meetings last…

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Positive family relationships help reduce the chances of re-offending

Author: Good Vibrations This beautiful comic was created by Studio Lindsay (@Studio.Lindsay) for The New Issue magazine in 2020. It was based on a Big Issue North article by Deborah Mulhearn about her visit to a Good Vibrations family…

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FEAR – and how to manage it

Guest author: Elma Chapman Fear is our bodies’ language and yet so often we want to shut it up! It is an emotion within ourselves. An emotion in itself is not harmful, therefore why do people so dislike feeling…

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Members of our Resonate project interview Bill Bailey

One of Good Vibrations’ patrons, talented musician and comedian, Bill Bailey, gave members of our Glasgow Resonate group an exclusive interview earlier this year. The experience gave them an insight into how he handles nerves when performing, why he…

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Exploring Performance

We’re delighted to launch a short film about Exploring Performance – a fantastic idea conceived by our Glasgow Resonate group. You can watch it here. On this project, group members interviewed and improvised with famous world music artists, Bill…

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Loophole Music – providing stimulation and a safe space for self-expression at Bethlem Royal Hospital

Loophole Music is a communal music making project at the Bethlem Royal Hospital in South London supporting patients’ wellbeing and recovery. The Maudsley Charity are generously supporting this project over three years, with funding coming from The National Foundation for…

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Big Issue North’s article on our work in prison with families

On 16 December 2019, Big Issue North ran an article on our work with men at HMP Liverpool and their families. Deborah Mulhearn’s article brilliantly evokes the sounds and emotions of these projects: “The prison chapel at HM Prison…

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Good Vibrations in the Prison Service Journal

We are delighted to announce that an in-depth article about Good Vibrations has been published in a special edition of the Prison Service Journal which looks at the impact of the Arts in Prison. Entitled “Music, Education and Opportunity”,…

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Creative Scotland and the Spirit of Hope

We are delighted to announce that Creative Scotland has awarded us with £33,800 to grow our highly successful Resonate project in Glasgow in 2018 and ’19. This project will see us work once again with the city’s beautiful Spirit…

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Volunteering with Crisis at Christmas

We were delighted to be part of the amazing Crisis at Christmas volunteer effort in London on the 25th and 27th December, an event that provides help for homeless people at a critical time of year. Good Vibrations’ facilitator,…

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Daisy Beau – the human jukebox

In autumn 2017, we ran the 2017 Bill Bailey Fundraising Award competition. The aim was for entrants to come up with creative ways to raise money for Good Vibrations, and winners received lots of Bill Bailey goodies – tour…

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“I was anti-Jobcentre, but now I’m pleased with it” (A participant)

Good Vibrations is actively seeking to partner with more Jobcentre Plus branches, across the country, to support their long-term unemployed clients with disabilities and chronic health conditions to become more work-ready. Over the last two years, we have supported 36…

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Good Vibrations at Work in the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

On the 19th September, Good Vibrations ran team-building workshops with thirty staff from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland at their annual Teaching and Learning Conference. Run by experienced facilitator, Mags Smith, these workshops gave staff the opportunity to bond…

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Music sessions for well-being

From August – December 2017, we will be running weekly gamelan sessions at Campbell House in Gartnavel Hospital, Glasgow. Taking place on Thursday afternoons, these sessions will enable members of the public to discover the resonant sounds of the…

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Supporting army veterans

On the 20th October 2017, army veterans at Stoll House in London, will be putting on a gamelan performance, as the culmination of a week’s work. This is our first project, specifically for ex-service personnel, thanks to funding from…

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Novel team-building days for corporates

Looking for something completely different for your next work team-building day? Why not book Good Vibrations to run a gamelan workshop with your team? Watch this short film to get a taste of what it’s all about. “I’ve learned so much about…

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Motivation to change for men convicted of sexual offences

In 2015, a UK sex offender treatment prison collaborated with Nottingham Trent University to investigated the influence of gamelan courses with convicted sexual offenders, to ascertain if there were changes in participants in relation to readiness to change or…

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Good Vibrations and older people

Bath Spa University and The University of Worcester carried out peer-reviewed research into the impact of Good Vibrations’ gamelan projects on the older offender population. Research findings included that: The project helps older offenders to find an identity Completing…

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Resonate

An overview: On Thursday afternoons at Campbell House, Gartnavel Hospital in Glasgow Participants welcome to make donations to Good Vibrations These are the sessions we’ll be running: Resonate: Connect (12:30-13:30pm) – Discover the resonant sounds and music of the…

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Arts, culture and innovation in criminal justice settings

Good Vibrations is proud to be a best-practice case study in The National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance’s new guide for those with responsibility for supporting the education, health, wellbeing and reintegration into society of individuals within the Criminal Justice…

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Everyone can play Gamelan

Funding from Arts Council England and Creative Scotland is enabling us to run regular Gamelan sessions in London, Glasgow and Nottingham for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re young or old, an experienced musician or a novice, this is for…

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Good Vibrations in the Journal of Offender Rehabilitation

A 2016 article about Good Vibrations’ impact in the Journal of Offender Rehabilitation says: “Perhaps most interesting is the finding that the initial positive changes observed in some individuals seem to prompt continued positive change. Indeed, those men whom we were…

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BBC films us jamming

BBC Indonesia made this fantastic film about our charitable and fundraising work at our Jamelan event at the Royal College of Music at the end of 2015. http://www.bbc.com/…/multimedia/2016/01/151231_video_jamelan. You can donate too by texting GOOD22£3 to 70070.  

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Fingerprints!

Fingerprints is a state of the art print workshop in HMP Thameside’s Enterprise Unit. They support the rehabilitation of inmates by training and guiding them in the world of print to prepare them for work on the outside. Fingerprints…

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Transactional Analysis for Better Communication Skills

On 12th January, Stacey Raymen from Mosaic Training ran a really useful session for our team on Transactional Analysis For Better Communications Skills. Her session covered a considerable amount of content at a good pace, and the team really…

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Can playing in an Indonesian percussion orchestra help people who’ve been unemployed for years to build confidence and get more work-ready?

Surrey, Sussex and Berkshire District Jobcentre Plus piloted an extraordinary programme this October with 20 long-term unemployed clients, 78% of whom considered themselves to have a disability or health condition. The group learnt to play an Indonesian tuned-percussion orchestra…

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Good Vibrations at the House of Commons

Good Vibrations was thrilled to be invited to the UK launch of the ASEAN Insight campaign and to celebrate the appointment of Richard Graham MP as Trade Envoy to the ASEAN Economic Community on the 29th September. We put…

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Good Vibrations at Work – ‘stress release; bond with coleagues’

On 9th February we supported 15 teachers at a Barnet primary school to develop their creativity, leadership, communication, problem-solving and team-working skills through a Good Vibrations at Work Team-Building Day. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYFjnZ8yHnY The feedback we got from participants about the…

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Musical development and positive identity change

Dr. Jennie Henley’s article discussing musical development and positive identity change in prisoners (drawing on Good Vibrations in th UK, the Oakdale Prison Choir in the US and the Casa da Musica programme in Portugal) is now published on the EU…

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Bill Bailey has come on board as our new patron

We’re absolutely thrilled to announce that Bill Bailey has come on board as our new patron. Comedian, actor and musician, Bill Bailey has been one of Britain’s most influential celebrities of the 21st Century. With an eclectic career spanning…

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Professor Alison Liebling’s speech about therapeutic value of arts in prisons

Professor Alison Liebling’s presentation at the Sharing Good Vibrations event (back in October – it’s taken a while to get this on here!) was thoughtful and inspiring.  As well as an overview of various studies of arts in prisons (including…

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New book, The Good Prison, featuring Good Vibrations

Gerard Lemos, a highly respected author, prison policy expert and Co-Director of social policy thinktank Lemos & Crane, has a new book out, The Good Prison. In it he argues that conscience, formed by family relationships and reinforced through…

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Listen to a radio programme produced by and featuring Good Vibrations participants at Whatton Prison

This short “radio programme” was produced by and features interviews with participants in Good Vibrations projects at Whatton Prison.  This programme was produced in-house at the prison and presented at the Sharing Good Vibrations conference in October 2013.  Grateful…

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Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons, Nick Hardwick’s, speech at Sharing Good Vibrations now online

Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons, Nick Hardwick, gave one of the keynote speeches at October’s Sharing Good Vibrations event.  His speech is online here.  In his speech Nick said: “Having now seen Gamelan workshops in prisons, talked to…

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Short film documenting the Sharing Good Vibrations event

 Happy New Year to all Good Vibrations friends and supporters!  Here’s a really brilliant short film about the Sharing Good Vibrations event in October.  Thanks to But We Blew It Productions for doing such a great job documenting the…

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Sharing Good Vibrations promotional video

Here’s a short video about the forthcoming Sharing Good VIbrations event, produced and directed by Russ, a Good Vibrations participant, gamelan student, and emerging stand-up comedian.  Thanks also to Alex Odam for excellent filming and editing.

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Fantastic performance at Koestler Opening Day!

A group of 15 of us – past Good Vibrations participants from various different projects in prisons, probation and with NEET young people, plus some Good Vibrations team members and a couple of willing volunters who’d NEVER played gamelan…

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Good Vibrations group performing at Koestler Exhibition opening day

The Koestler Trust annual exhibition of art by prisoners etc, curated this year by Mercury Award winning rap artist Speech Debelle, opens next week at the Southbank. Public opening day on Tuesday 24 September from 10am. A Good Vibrations…

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Sharing Good Vibrations – celebrating 10 years of Good Vibrations, at the Southbank Centre from Thursday 17 October – Sunday 20 October 2013.

Join us for four days of workshops, presentations, debates and performances as we highlight the creative, important and inspiring work done with gamelan (and other artforms) in criminal justice and the community. Over the four days of events we…

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Good Vibrations case study in new book “Interventions in Criminal Justice”

A new book, “Interventions in Criminal Justice”, out shortly, has a chapter by Laura Caufield and Professor David Wilson on the role of arts in prisons.  Good Vibrations is used as a case study.  The rest of the book…

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Article about Good Vibrations in Music Education Research

There’s an article about Good Vibrations in the latest edition of Music Education Research.  It pulls together findings from longitudinal studies of Good Vibrations participants over the last few years, showing that participating in Good Vibrations inspires positive change…

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Good Vibrations talk at the Royal College of Psychiatrists

Director of Good Vibrations, Cathy Eastburn, and colleagues will be speaking at the Royal College of Psychiatry on Wednesday 19 September.  Click here for info

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Presentation about Good Vibrations at Asian Psychological Conference in Jakarta this week

From July 4th to 7th Dr Laura Caulfield – author of ‘Promoting Positive Change’ – of the Centre for Applied Criminology at Birmingham City University, UK, will be speaking at the Asian Psychological Association conference, Tarumanagara University, Jakarta.  The…

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Good Vibrations part of the Gong Festival

This week’s Good Vibrations project at Deerbolt Young Offenders Institution is being run as part of the Gong Festival, an annual celebration of “northern gamelan”.  See the Gong Festival’s website for more details…. Cathy, 10 May 2012

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Chief Inspector of Prisons speech focusing on central role of education in prisons, using Good Vibrations as good example

Nick Hardwick, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons (and former trustee of Good Vibrations) gave the Prison Education Trust Annual Speech on 18 October.  His wide-ranging speech included looking at his experiences in the role, describing what has most…

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Article about Good Vibrations and women prisoners

October 2010: There’s an article by Laura Caulfield and Professor David Wilson from Birmingham City University in the current Journal of Social Criminology about the impact of Good VIbrations on women prisoners.  Having interviewed women prisoners and prison staff…

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Good Vibrations now an approved intervention in High Security Prisons

Good Vibrations has recently been awarded “Approved Regime Intervention” status by the Directorate of High Security Prisons. Basically this means that we are now officially recognised as an effective tool for high security prisons in their efforts to reduce…

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