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Dark blue banner with holly leaves in the bottom corners. A robin is perched on a leaf on the right side. Text reading "Silent Night Featuring James McVey and the Julia's House Hospice Choir" is in the centre.

Silent Night: AUB community helps Julia’s House release reimagined Christmas hit


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Julia’s House has recorded their own version of the traditional Christmas song Silent Night. Featuring reworked lyrics to educate people about the hospice, it was performed by staff and volunteers. Any great song deserves a video and Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) were able to create a music video for the charity starring families and children. The video also featured a cameo by their patron, James McVey of The Vamps.

Anyone who lives in Dorset and Wiltshire has heard of Julia’s House and the amazing work they do to care for children and support their families. Many remember fundraising for this charity at school, while others have a more personal connection. This includes Dr Amanda Stephenson, Senior Lecturer for BA (Hons) Make-up for Media and Performance at AUB.

When Amanda’s sons were younger, they had a close friend who was cared for at Julia’s House. She’s also friends with Dave Hutchings, manager of the charity’s warehouse and showroom shop in Creekmore. At the start of the year, Dave mentioned his grand vision of creating a Christmas music video for Julia’s House. Amanda was on board straight away. With no budget, they knew this project wouldn’t be easy, but it was for a great cause.

From then on, it was all hands on deck. Amanda created a crew of current AUB students and graduates. This included BA (Hons) Film Production alum Jacob Parvin as director; current third-year BA (Hons) Make-up for Media and Performance students Molly Brown and Ruby Ellis, and current second-year BA (Hons) Film Production students Xavier Nolan and Cosmo Gamaggio Schafer. Plus, the recently formed Julia’s House Hospice Choir were delighted to be taking part and to receive well-deserved recognition.

Filming fuelled by festive cheer

Filming took place over two days at Upton House in October, and Echotown Studios also donated the time and staff to get it professionally recorded. The set was bustling with children from the hospice, their nurses, and parents.

“Making the music video was about creating memories for everyone involved from Julia’s House. Dads were getting in the make-up chairs and the children were loving the movie star attention. However, we were also keen to use it as a tool to educate people about the hospice. It’s not just a clinical space, but a place where there’s a lot of joy and laughter.

“Many of the Julia’s House Hospice Choir are volunteers and give their time for free to feel part of something special.”

Part of the local community

Amanda shares, “At AUB, we’re thinking locally, we’re thinking nationally and we’re thinking globally. We see it as our responsibility to support what’s going on in Bournemouth and the people who live here.

“Working on live briefs also helps me keep things fresh for students and show them what working in the industry is like. This situation was unique as they were dealing with children with different needs and needed to think about the environment they were creating.”

We’ll wait to see whether the single reaches Christmas number one. But no matter the outcome, the project has brought joy to everyone involved and AUB are honoured to have played a part in making it happen.

Visit the Julia's House Facebook page to watch the music video.

Something to think about

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