One of ROCO’s most valuable partnerships is with the Houston Zoo, the venue where we stage our yearly “Peter and the Wolf” with Interactive Theater. The performances also raise awareness about the zoo’s wolf conservation efforts. Shows at the Houston Zoo are set for Sunday, Jan. 15, at 2, 3 and 4 pm.
This year, we’re extending our efforts to reach another community that might not be able to attend, but that deserves the same type of interactive and joyful experience. ROCO will also perform the program for little ones at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers, their siblings and families.
Carol Herron, Arts In Medicine program coordinator at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers, chats with us about what she sees everyday at work.
Q: Is infusing arts into the hospital environment a relatively new thing?
Carol Herron: For 20 years, the Periwinkle Arts In Medicine program at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers has provided enjoyable and educational art activities that give children, young adults, families and caregivers affected by pediatric cancer and blood disorders the opportunity for self-expression, empowerment and healing through the arts.
Carol Herron: We feel strongly that bringing all types of art, including music, visual arts, creative writing, photography and dance enriches the environment for these families.
Q: What’s the benefit to the patient and families?
Carol Herron: Through the arts, patients and siblings have some sense of control and most importantly, are able to just be kids.
Q: Why is live music important and different than recorded music in the hospital setting?
Carol Herron: Live music appeals to family members of all ages – very young children are captivated by the sounds, older kids may be familiar with the music and parents enjoy the distraction and seeing their children engaged.
Q: What do you like about Peter and the Wolf for the hospital environment?
Carol Herron: Because this particular performance involves theater, it is visually stimulating as well. I love seeing how the arts can make a difference in the day for a family. If a child is laughing and smiling and interacting with the musicians and actors we have been successful.
Q: What do you love most about your job?
Carol Herron: Seeing children who don’t want to leave because they are having such a good time!