You don’t need to be a musician to benefit from music therapy.
My name is Dorothy Davies and I am an accredited music therapist with advanced training in Neurologic Music Therapy. In this article, I will be answering some common questions related to music therapy, including:
● Do I have to know how to sing or play an instrument?
● Is music therapy the same as music education or performance?
● What is music therapy?
● Who is it for?
● What areas can be addressed?
Do I have to know how to sing or play an instrument?
No, the focus of music therapy is not on musical skills or expertise. Rather, music is used as the primary tool in order to address clinical, non-musical goals.
Is music therapy the same as music education or performance?
No, music education (lessons) focus on the development of musical skills, techniques, and expertise. Music performance focuses on the implementation of those skills for entertainment purposes.
What is music therapy?
Music therapy is a therapeutic service provided by an accredited music therapist (MTA), in which music is used as the primary tool in order to address clinical, non-musical goals. These may include development and/or training within cognitive, motor, speech/language, social, behavioural, emotional, and mental health domains.
Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT) is a specialized area of music therapy that requires additional training. It is a research- and evidence-based system built on how music perception and music production influences the brain. Music-based exercises aim to address functional, non-musical goals in 3 main areas: motor, cognition, and speech/language.
Did you know that music can be harmful if not used properly?
Accredited music therapists are trained to use music clinically and intentionally in order to support clinical goals and overall health and well-being.
For example, if not carefully delivered, music can bring up trauma for some clients, which requires proper support in response. If not carefully delivered, music can also overstimulate some clients.
Who is it for?
Music therapy has the unique ability to benefit people of all ages and abilities. This includes toddlers, children, adolescents, adults, and elderly individuals. Some examples of client populations that can benefit from music therapy include:
● Brain injury
● Parkinson’s Disease
● Palliative care
● Speech disorders
● Developmental disabilities
● Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
● Down syndrome
● Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
What areas can be addressed in music therapy?
Music therapy can address goals related to cognition, motor, speech/language, developmental, social, behavioural, emotional, and mental health.
● Exercises can aim to train and/or rehabilitate functional abilities. These may include:
○ Cognitive goals related to memory, executive functions, and attention
○ Motor goals related to gait, balance, range of motion, gross/fine motor skills, strength, and endurance
○ Speech/language goals related to retrieval and production of functional phrases, speech intelligibility, articulatory control, and respiratory capacity
● Exercises can aim to enhance learning and education
● Exercises can aim to teach appropriate social behaviour and conduct
● Exercises can aim to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety and encourage self-expression and self-exploration
● Music therapy services can also be provided through adapted music lessons, where learning of musical skills are paired with therapeutic goals
Music therapy services can be offered on an individual or group basis.
In summary, music therapy is a unique form of therapy that can address people of all ages and abilities on their journey of realizing potential and shaping health through music.
If you have any questions, please visit www.cornerstonemusictherapy.com for more information.
For specific inquiries, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What events are happening in your local area?
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is June 15th. There are many events happening in and around your communities designed to engage people in awareness and prevention of financial, emotional, physical and sexual abuse of older adults specifically.
A good website for information can be found at Elder Abuse Ontario and we provide a copy of their Spring 2019 Newsletter for your information:
“My knitting group has broken up,” said mom on the telephone, “but I may have found a new group to join. We got a flyer at the condo about a knitting group at the CNIB that’s open to the community.”
“You should go,” I said. “Winter is coming and you’ll need something to do. Besides what are we going to do with all the hats, mittens, and scarves we make every year?”
My mother, Katharina Duhatschek, lives in a condo at the Kilgour Estates, and for the past few years she has been meeting weekly in the condo library with a group of like-minded women to knit and crochet for charity. When I retired three years ago I got in on the fun, not showing up for meetings, but crocheting throughout the winter, making so many hats, scarves, and mittens that all family and friends were well-taken care of. I gave all my extras to mom’s knitting group which sent them to women’s shelters once a year.
I have long understood the therapeutic benefits of knitting and crocheting. Even before I retired I would often come home after a stressful day and crochet for hours into the evening, using the repetition of the stitches and the rhythm of the patterns, to calm me down. Plus I got a big kick out of making something, choosing colours and textures and patterns, and bringing them together into a finished product. It would be hard to get through a winter without knitting and crocheting.
“We’re making Twiddlemuffs” said mom on the phone. “Do you know what that is?”
“Nope. Never heard of them,” I answered. “But let me see the pattern and we’ll figure it out.” Mom had walked over to the CNIB the previous week and met the wonderful women of Mosaic. Mosaic, we learned, is a home care and community resource centre. The knitting and crochet group was making muffs, decorated on the inside and out with buttons, flowers, elastics, and ornaments. The muffs would be distributed to residents of the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centres Veteran’s Wing. Not only do the muffs keep fingers warm, but they keep fingers busy.
“They’re doing decoupage,” said mom on the phone a few months later. “Do you know what that is?”
“I think so I said. You stick pictures on wood and then varnish it. You should go.”
The next time I visited, mom proudly showed me her decoupage box. She had painted the exterior of the wooden box in blue and then cut out shapes of cottage scenes, black bears, canoes, and pine trees. “I think I’ll take it to the cottage this summer and put all our cottage photos in it. I’ll leave it on the coffee table so people can look through the pictures.”
Creativity is important to well-being, and while we all encourage creativity in children, sometimes we forget that we still need to be creative as a we get older. Making things, whether it’s boxes, or mittens, or muffs, allows us to design and innovate, to express ourselves through our hands, to produce something and be proud of it. I’m glad mom has found a group like Mosaic, where she can participate in a creative community.
By Monica Duhatschek
Beth Eshete and members of our community on Valentine’s Day 14 February 2019
Every year, seemingly the day after New Year’s, the advertising starts for Valentine’s Day. Red hearts in store windows, media advertising diamond jewellery to show how much ‘you love a person’, and of course, chocolate. Let me say right now, I LOVE chocolate. Seriously.
In the coldest month of the year, we have the excuse to get cozy with one another and celebrate love. But what does Love mean? If you asked 10 different people, you would get 10 different answers. Of course, there would be some overlap, but each person has their own love story. What is yours?
Would Chapter One be about the pet you had as a young child or about a sibling you looked up to? Maybe Chapter Two would be about your first love when you were only 8 years old? What chapters would your first kiss, your first break-up/make-up and your first ‘I Love you’ fall in to? Weddings, children and family pets. So much love! An entire lifetime could be put in to Chapters for sharing.
We now celebrate Family Day in February. It’s a great way to spend some time together and perhaps watch a movie or read excerpts from a book. So many options to choose from be they classic or modern. Remember these? 101 Dalmatians, The Bridges of Madison County, The Notebook, Titanic, Casablanca, The English Patient, The Time Traveler’s Wife, Happy Feet, and who can forget Romeo & Juliet or Pride and Prejudice? And these are just a few…
If music is more your thing, perhaps update your playlist to include some of the old favourites just to play on Valentine’s Day: Endless Love (Diana Ross); You Can’t Hurry Love (Supremes); Because You Love Me (Celine Dion); I Think I Love You (Partridge Family); Crazy in Love (Beyonce); and I Will Always Love You (Whitney Houston). If you like Country Music, pretty much every song has to do with being in love or falling out of love or breaking up then making up.
Oh, the ups and downs of love.
A mother’s love; a spouse’s love; siblings and furry friends; friends. Love is action. Perhaps you show this by a hug when one is needed (and even when it’s not); listening; supporting even when you may not agree with a situation. Cooking for your friends and family. Showing concern for another being – human or animal. It is affection without expectation and is unconditional. This doesn’t mean it can’t get loud and annoying at times. Because we know it does. But love should always be respectful, even in times of strife.
So, celebrate love. Grab a good love story, a box of chocolates and kleenex and your family or best friend and spend some time together. Talk about your own love story. Or come to Mosaic for our Community Café and share your story with others. Call us for more information or visit our website for program descriptions and dates.
Written by: Dina Campeis; Community Relations Manager, Mosaic Home Care & Community Resource Centres. (416.322.7002 or 905.597.7000. www.mosaichomecare.com
At Mosaic Home Care and Community Resource Centres we provide community space and host events that are open to the wider community. We aim to facilitate connection, meaning, fun, education, interaction and to emphasise the value of “human being” across the full spectrum of being.
One of our more popular events, the Magic of the Opera, presented by Marcel Deurvorst (Life Institute at Ryerson), was back again last Thursday (17th January) at our Markham community resource centre. This event explored the Opera Don Pasquale (Donizetti) and our next Magic of Opera event (special focus on Luciano Pavarotti) is this Thursday at our mid-town CNIB community resource centre.
We asked our Community Resource and Social Engagement Coordinator, Beth Eshete, to provide her perspective of the Thursday event:
Magic of The Opera Blog – Anna Netrebko January 17, 2019
I used to be one of those people who was annoyed at even the thought of Opera. Who wants to hear people sing at such a high-pitch for hours on end? But that all changed….
Excuse my ignorance but it’s necessary for me to set an honest tone for this life altering musical experience I had at Mosaic’s Magic of the Opera Event on January 17th, 2019.
I obviously don’t know a single thing about Opera, so imagine my surprise when I found myself completely mesmerized by the angelic voice of Anna Netrebko, a beautiful Russian operatic soprano. Introduced to us by Marcel Deuvorst, an opera aficionado, Anna’s work really was a delightful “first” to ease my way into the world of opera. Marcel did a great job of explaining her life, her musical background and even her personality.
Mosaic community members watched clips from the opera in complete silence, not wanting to interrupt the disposition in the room. At the end they asked Marcel questions freely about the singer, and Marcel was happy to answer.
Overall the event was fabulously successful with people asking me to register them for the second presentation by Marcel featuring Luciano Pavarotti on Thursday January 24, 2019.
It’s always wonderful when our community members are captivated by the programs offered and of course, we are excited to have Marcel present for us again this week!
Registration is still open for this presentation, if you are interested please feel free to give me a call at 905-597-7000 ext. 242 or email@example.com!
Community Resource & Social Engagement Coordinator
Beth’s own experience supports the relevance of opening up community space and filling it with rich diverse experience.