Underbelly Bristo Square (Dairy Room), Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
A musical comedy set in a care home, Paradise Lodge is based on writer Steve Cooper’s experience of caring for his mother-in-law in her final years as she lived with dementia. One in three people will develop dementia and Paradise Lodge encourages people to think about the person behind the condition.
Eric and Kylie, a dysfunctional ukulele musical duo called The Doodlebugs, embark on their first gig together at the Paradise Lodge Care Home. Told in a series of touching flashbacks and comic songs from the war years, Paradise Lodge transports Vi, Ronnie and the audience back to a time when they had all their lives in front of them – to when they thought they would live forever.
Trying to make sense of dementia and its impact on those affected, Paradise Lodge explores the nature of identity, reality and loss, with a bit of Beyonce’s Single Ladies thrown in for good measure. A hilarious, heart-wrenching production, it will have audiences laughing, crying and singing their hearts out.
Steve comments, The reactions from audiences has been really touching and encouraging. People who were apprehensive that the show might bring back painful memories have said they needn’t have worried because they felt they had already witnessed every scene and took some reassurance from learning that they weren’t alone. Health professionals have said it could be used to train carers. People with Dementia, their families and carers have watched it together and each seems to find something that speaks to them. And they all end up singing!