Coronavirus COVID-19 advisory information
Skip to content
Home » December 2020

December 2020

Welcome, from Lucinda

On the 4th December we held our first cabaret style event, Odysseys Presents…

Ambassadors from London, Reading and Bristol came together to share their own original work – to read stories and poems, perform songs, show films – we even had an open mic session. We were joined by actor, writer, musician Richard Lumsden who gave us some inspirational words on continuing to create and change the story of stroke and brain injury. It was a great fun and we will be hosting another in the new year, around Valentines Day – so do start thinking about what you might like to show or share in the New Year! 

Fiona, Reading Company, captured the essence of the evening perfectly  with her sketch and poem, documenting the events as they unfolded…

An Odessey evening ... inspired by Hazel
 Janice said 'Hello', to all
 Christmas jumpers on a zoom call.
 Sing a song with Martyn, made us all feel glad
 He really is a musical lad.
 Hazel made  film for art
 It was a super start
 She may have  lost some words for now
 But she'll do some poetry for the next show.
 Colin had a curious story that was up in the loft
 Lincon and Kennedy made us all soft.
 Jen felt traumatic so did learn to live life
 A film of the pandemic to overcome strife
 Learn from us...Look through your window
 Richard Lumsden are you famous? Im not sure, 
 no memory  anymore!!! 
 Its an open mic, Lil is here
 Introducing poet Jawad who says not to fear
 Julias poem - struggle one day at a time
 She's the new Pam Ayres...made everything rhyme.
 Christina sang  Senwa de dende the song we all know
 Scarborough Fayre by the boys - tears flow
 Pete told about caring, and seeing the snow
 Sonya shared an echo from the past
 Blankets passed on to remember at last,
 Pauline and cabassa  in the light of peace.
 Lil sang ..Its Gaelic you know
 A pirate Queen to round off the show
 "Thanks all" said Janice,  We had lots of fun
 Now let's look forward to 2021.
 Fiona Watson.

Recovering Hope

Over the summer we put together a book. It tells the story of Stroke Odysseys, how it started and the process of making work together. If you haven’t received a copy but would like one, please email

Presenting at Symposium

London Ambassadors, Pauline and Jawad, joined Lucinda to present at a symposium organised by Kings College London. The event was attended online by hundreds, many hearing about our work for the first time.

Your space to share art work.

Send your work to Jennie for the next newsletter

Lil, London company.

“Not finished self portrait as a young girl, painted with gouache on recycled old canvas”

Martyn, Reading.

Phoenix Rising.

Jesus, London.

Merry Christmas and a Happy new Year. Images from a Christmas inside the house.

Sonia, Reading

My Mother’s Crochet hook.

Extract from Echoes of the past:

All the blankets, of my mother and her mother’s crochet throws are like links I kept. Memories and stories; a line to my past and their past going back in time. Memories keeping love alive. The blankets are just symbols of whatever is touched, used and given, from mother to child. Along the generations linking us all, as families, and in time...

Our new Reading group member Martyn would like to sing us into Christmas with a festive song, we really enjoyed this Martyn!

In Bristol we worked with Ambassadors to create the performance Zig Zag in 2020, which was set to tour in March and April but we were unable to continue with plans. The group did however take part in the Opera this summer. We are hoping to start the work again in Bristol in the New Year, we will keep you posted.

Some thoughts on the year from Andy, Bristol:

"I know this has been a very surreal and difficult year for a lot of people but I have really enjoyed the challenges and opportunities that were presented to us by Stroke Odyssey’s.
Before this year I had never sung in public and certainly never sung and played my guitar.
I had never come across zoom and, before this year I would never have thought it possible for me to participate in an opera, especially on line. Stoke Odyssey’s has stretched us and exercised our brains with some amazing results from all those involved. You have certainly installed a lot of confidence in us and I am looking forward to new challenges in 2021."

Rose and Lizzie – Zig Zag, performance in Bristol, 2020.

Welcome to new participants in London, many from Headway and Stroke Association groups, others who have been referred by current Ambassadors who have worked hard to present and encourage people to get involved. The new groups are taking part in weekly sessions with artist Melanie Pappenheim, Composer Jules Maxwell and Lucinda Jarrett, exploring themes of memory and working with animation in the new year.

In 2020 we made new work with a a group a The Outlook Centre North London and two new groups from across the city and the South London Ambassadors made the opera with us as well as appearing on TV, speaking at seminars and putting our first Cabaret event together.

Making the film Through the Window, July 2020
Making the Film Learn From Us, July 2020
Making the film Choochi – July 2020

Reading company welcomes three new members – Sonia, Martyn and Elizabeth, who are contributing to the newsletter for the first time this month. Together the group are working with Garsington Opera adult community company and artists Victoria and Lucinda, to devise the next act of the Opera, to be performed summer 2021. We are growing the group in Reading so if you know anyone who may like to join us in the new year, do ask them to contact me.

In Reading a performance of Blue, Blue Azul! Was performed at South Street Arts Centre in February 2020, it was set to tour until Covid hit. We can’t wait to be on stage with everyone again soon.

Iconic Lion at Forbury Gardens, Reading, some of the Ambassadors enjoying a meeting outside this summer.

Art Making Workshop

on 5th January at 11.30 we are inviting you to join us on zoom for an art making workshop, many of you attended the first session earlier in the month. Everyone is welcome, a reminder will be sent out. Here is the Zoom link

Films from 2020

Before we say goodbye to 2020 and wish you all a final Happy New Year, here’s a recap of some of the work from this year, films to revisit from 2020 as we look forward to making more work with you in 2021 and celebrate everyone’s creativity and hard work in exceptionally challenging circumstances.

We’re Going Places – Reading

Zig Zag – Bristol

Choochi – London

Through the Window – London

Learn from Us – London

I Look For The Think – Whole Company and Garsington Opera Adult Community Company

We can’t end 2020 without mentioning Covid-19. Our final word of the year comes from Jawad, his poem gives us hope for better times ahead.

Global Epidemic - Covid-19 
Tomorrow - Tomorrow
We will going to a New day
We will comeback again
we will going to a new song
we will going to new dancing  
we will going to performance
we will going to travel
We will going to drinking and laughing
We will comeback again
Like a birthday
We will comeback again