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UHBW staff shine on national stage at Our National Stories performance

Last updated: 24/11/2023

UHBW performing onstage ONHS

Staff at University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW) took to the national stage on the 23 November 2023 as part of a special project marking 75 years of the NHS.

UHBW took part in ‘Our National Health Stories Live’, which honoured the voices of NHS staff with a beautiful showcase of artistic work created in collaboration with 19 NHS Trusts across England.

UHBW artists performed their sound piece, ‘Listen In’, on stage at Aviva Studios in Manchester. It was composed by UHBW Musicians in Residence Tamsin Elliott and Beth Roberts, as well as UHBW Poet in Residence Beth Calverley, whose roles are funded by Bristol & Weston Hospitals Charity.

‘Listen In’ was created out of conversations with staff about their roles, the challenges and the highlights of their work, and what it's like working for the NHS.

Emily Malins, Arts Programme Manager at UHBW, said: “The team wanted to create a piece that reflected these conversations that would hold special meaning to all those who took part but would also resonate with all colleagues at UHBW. This project has been a special opportunity for us to celebrate our staff and highlight the vital roles they all play within our hospitals.

“The Arts & Culture team feel honoured to have been part of this national project, which not only shines a light on arts in health as a sector, but has also shown us the empathy, commitment and community that our colleagues provide to each other and our patients.

Over the last six months, thousands of NHS staff at 80 hospitals have taken part in the Our National Health Stories programme, telling their stories in their own words and creating pieces that reflect what it means to be part of the NHS at this landmark moment in its history. Performances included poetry, music, dance and much more.

During the event, UHBW appeared alongside other Trusts who shared their unique stories with a live audience, as well as audiences around the country via a livestream.

You can listen back to the performance:


The Trust’s Staff Choir also performed ’Listen In’ at Bristol Royal Infirmary on 20 November 2023. This was also streamed online on 23 November 2023 and is available:

On the event, Kwame Kwei-Armah, Artistic Director of the Our National Health Stories performance, said: “It's important to tell stories of the NHS from the inside. We often talk about the NHS as one huge monolith, but it’s the people who make the institution. I want to hear their voices. I want to hear their stories; to hear how they have negotiated the last few years. I want to help articulate that particular dedication to service and care. The creative team for this project are the NHS workers themselves, and the art comes from the ground up.”

The project is funded by Arts Council England, NHS Charities Together in partnership with NHS England.