As part of our The Music In You programme with Dr Jen Wills Lamacq, we headed down to Strings Bar and Venue, in Newport, on the Isle of Wight back on 5th April 2022 to meet with a group of mums and dads with their toddlers. After delivering these events online during the pandemic, this session marked the second time we were able to deliver in-person, following our first in-person session at AMP Studios in Chelmsford, Essex.

As people arrived, once again they commented how great it was to be back out, meeting other parents and toddlers in person, from the same area. Some had never been to the venue before, whilst others were chuffed to be returning to their old stomping ground during the day, now with their families, for some learning and socialising. 

The venue opened its doors at 10am to parents, prams and little ones, all welcomed by Jen. The venue team offered complimentary teas and coffees, as parents introduced themselves to one-another, some greeting old faces and others meeting for the very first time. As they settled in, some set their toddlers down on the soft flooring, where they played with the toys that were kindly supplied. As the little ones interacted with each other, giggling over bubbles that were being blown by one of the mums, Jen welcomed the group, explained what she would cover and how the session would run, before getting underway at 10.30am. 

Aided by a colourful presentation, Jen talked to the parents about how music helps with bonding, play and development, covering some fascinating science and psychology relating to music and the developing brain. Regularly, Jen would stop and welcome any questions the group might have, creating a warm, encouraging environment for parents to share their own experiences with Jen as well as with each other. It served as a great opportunity to get their questions answered on their own child’s behavioural patterns and development, by a child psychologist. It was also enlightening for everyone to know what they had in common as parents.

At the end of the morning, everyone stayed around to chat. Some watched their young ones play together and exchanged numbers, whilst others had follow up questions for Jen. It was a wonderful morning, all in the heart of The Isle of Wight’s local community in Newport, at Strings Bar and Venue.

Participants Quotes:

Venue Quote:

‘The Music In You was a real success here at Strings. A very well organised event and a pleasure to be part of it. Here at Strings we pride ourselves on having an eclectic mix of events and shows, working with like minded passionate people and providing the perfect space for people to use and enjoy in whatever capacity. The Music In You was something a little different for us, but certainly something I would welcome back with open arms. Events like this only help venues like Strings to cement itself within the community, and become an even more important part of people’s lives’

Claydon Connor, Strings Bar & Venue