Hear and Now: BEDFORD

Hear and Now is the Philharmonia’s flagship major intergenerational community creative project based in the Queens Park area of Bedford, led by Artistic Director Tim Steiner.

Hear and Now is a longstanding unique musical collaboration between the Tibbs Dementia Foundation’s Music 4 Memory, a singing group for people living with dementia and their carers, Fusion Youth Singing, a teenage vocal and instrumental group, and members of the Philharmonia Orchestra. Young and old instrumentalists from the North Bedfordshire Youth Chamber Orchestra and Da Capo String Ensemble – a group for learners/rusty returners – form the Hear and Now intergenerational orchestra. Comprising over 150 participants, this multi-layered project is unique in its quality, creativity, diversity, scale, and age-span.


Key features include:

  • A platform for participants to create and compose original music and words via discussion, reminiscence and creative workshops
  • Mentorship opportunities and peer-to-peer support
  • A collaborative, safe environment in which to share experience and challenge stereotypes
  • Instrumentalists receive coaching from Philharmonia musicians, and play side-by-side with members of the Philharmonia in performance.

Hear and Now features in 'From Bingo to Bartok,' an online publication commissioned by the Baring Foundation, spotlighting some of the best examples of orchestral work supporting older people living better lives and meeting the challenges of health and loneliness. Read the publication here.


Hear and Now is co-produced with Orchestras Live and is presented in partnership with Fusion Youth Singing, Tibbs Dementia Foundation’s Music 4 Memory and the University of Bedfordshire.

Orchestras Live logo

The project is generously supported by:

Andor Charitable Trust
The Arts Society
The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust
House of Industry Estate
McLay Dementia Trust
The Neighbourly Charitable Trust
St John’s Hospital Trust
The Wixamtree Trust
And a funder that wishes to remain anonymous.

The future of Hear and Now depends on continued fundraising. If you would like to support Hear and Now, please contact the Philharmonia’s Development team on 020 7921 3903 or development@philharmonia.co.uk.