Pumpkins, PayPal and the Power of Music

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    Having completed a mammoth twenty four Recitals for Wrigglers shows in this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, we finished October with an ambitious eight show week, which included concerts in and around Edinburgh. This series of concerts was based around a Halloween theme and we thoroughly enjoyed performing this programme to mums, dads, babies, toddlers, cats, skeletons, ghosts and pumpkins alike! We welcomed a new face, Niamh Malloy, who played in several concerts for Clea. It was a pleasure to work with Niamh who, with a wriggler of her own, is a very experienced storyteller, and is a wonderful cellist. Louise travelled up to Edinburgh with her wrigglers and shared the week with Aisling O’Dea, who by now is a familiar face to our Edinburgh audiences. All concerts were well attended, the only exception being Dunfermline. We love playing at Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline, but for some reason we can’t seem pull in a crowd here. Our aim is to make music accessible to all, therefore we are prepared to take our shows on the road, but we will need to attract more wrigglers to our Dunfermline concerts if they are to continue. Please do give us feedback on this as we would love to return here in the future. 

The first of our Halloween concerts was at Holyroodhouse, where Bert the skeleton made his debut! This was a sellout, which it normally is here, and we thoroughly enjoyed playing at this extraordinary venue (as did Bert!). We also made our debut at Tribe Porty, in Portobello, which was such a hit that we will be returning in November. We entertained one of our youngest ever wrigglers at Morningside – three weeks old (congratulations to mum for leaving the house, for making the concert and remembering the baby! 🙂 )!


We have six dates in November (listed below) and we have introduced an online payment system which will hopefully minimise the concert queues. We encountered numerous problems with our PayPal machine at the last set of concerts. From November you can pay in advance via our website and at £4 per head (any head – however young or old!) is a total bargain! You can also guarantee entry by buying your ticket in advance, which can make a big difference in our smaller venues, which can sell out quite quickly. Go on, try it out! https://www.recitalsforwrigglers.co.uk/shows


The effect of live music on human beings is well researched and documented, and is very much our raison d’être at Recitals for Wrigglers. When Louise presented the idea to Clea, Clea already had a wealth of experience in bringing music to adults and children, particularly those with special needs. This term Clea has been working at a special school in Fife, where she is regularly able to demonstrate the power of musical interaction to the often surprised staff. Last week a non-verbal boy on the autistic spectrum arrived at the group music session quite upset and shaken. The staff were expecting him not to settle enough to engage in the music activity. However, by singing familiar songs, such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, it was not long before he was smiling and relaxed and able to join in with some energetic group drumming! 

The way in which live music affects babies and preschoolers is apparent by the range of reactions we see during our concerts. Throughout our opening piece there is often complete silence, which is surprising to many parents who have been up since the early hours with an otherwise energetic toddler. We love watching this and other reactions that we see later on in the concerts, which can range from happy and excited to calm and sleepy. Thank you for sending us your experiences and photographs of our concerts. Please do continue to do so via Facebook, Twitter or email. 

On a final note, the power of music to transform an occasion was strongly felt by Louise this month who lost her father to Cancer, following a short illness. Louise’s dad, Trevor, was an optimistic and energetic man who loved music. He was a regular concert goer and was often a guinea pig for new Recitals for Wrigglers programmes, memorably the Halloween programme, when we tried it out on him in a late night concert in Louise’s lounge! A funeral is usually a sad occasion, but Trevor’s was incredibly uplifting and positive, just like the person he was. This was in the most part due to the live string quartet who played incredibly throughout the service, lifting people’s spirits and celebrating the life of a music lover, whose CD and record collection ranged from Pink Floyd to Tchaikovsky, with a considerable variety in between. We are usually involved in performing the music to an audience, so to be on the opposite end was a revelation, and Louise and her family experienced first hand the ability that music has to transform negative emotions into something positive. Louise’s dad enjoyed taking his grandchildren to Lilliput Concerts, when they were visiting his home town of Cheltenham, therefore he was able to directly experience the power of music on new and developing minds, like this little Minion’s! 

November Concerts; The Princess and the Pea.

22nd @ 10.30am Queensferry Church EH30 9NS

23rd @ 10.30am Zoom Club, Summerhall EH9 1QH

24th @ 10.30am Morningside Parish Church, 1 Cluny Drive EH10 6DN

25th @ 11.30am Tribeporty, 19 Windsor Place, Portobello EH15 2AJ

25th @ 2pm Stockbridge Church (Young Room), EH3 5BN

26th @ 10.30am Linlithgow Bowling Club, 2 Philip Avenue EH49 7BH


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