The patients at Birmingham Children’s Hospital are having their moment in the spotlight after becoming the stars of a new charity single and music video. It’s raising money for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, to help fund singing-play sessions at the hospital run by Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine.   

‘You Are Everything’ is a wonderfully uplifting song and encourages kids to find their voice and sing when they’re scared or feeling sad. 

It’s been created and produced by Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine, an organisation which has been visiting the patients at the hospital weekly for the past 20 years (since 2004). Music and singing can dramatically ease anxiety and stress in children, which in turn can reduce the length of a patient’s stay and the need for pain relief. That’s why Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity proudly supports a hospital-wide arts programme, which funds organisations such as Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine, to provide diverse, age-appropriate, singing-play to support patient health and wellbeing. Money raised from the charity single will ensure the sessions with Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine can continue.    

The song has been written by Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine team member, Ruairi Edwards, and was filmed over two days at the hospital. It features the vocals of some of the patients and the Trust’s Choir, as well as those of the Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine team  

One of the patients featured is six-year-old Emilia Mackay, from Redditch, who has been a patient at Birmingham Children’s Hospital since April last year, when she was diagnosed with aplastic anaemia, a serious blood condition, where the bone marrow and stem cells do not produce enough blood cells.  

Emilia had a successful stem cell transplant in September, but had to spend six weeks in hospital, in isolation, as she was immunocompromised. During this time, with her interaction with others limited, her sessions with Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine became a source of joy and something she looked forward to. Having enjoyed singing and dancing before she became ill, it was something her mum, Steph was so pleased to see. 

Steph comments: “It was an absolute joy to watch Emilia sing and play instruments with the team from Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine every week. Her face lit up every time they arrived. When we learned about the charity single, Emilia was so excited to get involved and do her part so kids in the future can benefit from the same sessions she did. She spent a couple of weeks learning the lyrics with the team and even got to go into the studio to record it, once we had left hospital. It’s an experience that will stay with us always.    

Miranda Williams, head of public fundraising at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “This charity single is wonderfully uplifting, and that’s exactly why organisations like Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine are so important to our patients. When they’re feeling sad and anxious, or undergoing a procedure, a visit from the team can help distract them for a short while.  

We’re very proud of this charity single and that our patients and staff are the stars of the show. We hope everyone gets behind it, so we can continue to bring Ex Cathedra Singing Medicine’s singing-play sessions to our sick kids.” 

Rebecca Ledgard, Director of Education and Participation at Ex Cathedra, said: In this 20th year of Singing Medicine at Birmingham Children’s Hospital we were delighted to work with Simon Peter King (Videography) and Vada Recording Studios, to create something really joyous with, and for, the children.  

Research shows that singing is really effective for improving wellbeing and our special singing-play activities help to contribute to that and provide opportunity for making choices in play. 

To view the ‘You Are Everything’ charity single and see the young patients in action and donate please click here.