I don’t mean to be disrespectful to this wonderful man: this lovely man is clearly not dead in the literal sense. But this is an extraordinary transformation: the music revives him from a sort of depressive coma,* barely aware or responsive, to an articulate, engaged man again. It quickens both his thinking and his emotions — and as Oliver Sacks points out, his sense of identity too, reviving a meaningful relationship to the rest of the world.
From a rough-cut trailer for “Alive Inside,” a new film premiering this week the use of music to reach nursing-home residents with senile dementia and Alzheimer’s.
And if you’re wondering what Cab Calloway brought to the game:
Hat tip to my sister, Cynthia Dobbs, who is da bomb.
*I’m speaking figuratively, so please hold the definitional corrections).