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What is music therapy?


What is it?

Music therapy is the use of music to achieve non-musical goals or promote wellness through musical experiences. Music therapists strive to improve the health, functioning and well-being of their clients. It is an established health profession.

Music is used within a therapeutic relationship to address emotional, cognitive, social and physical, needs of individuals. Musical experiences, combined with clinical intentions are used for emotional expression and the strengthening of abilities to be transferred to other areas of one’s life. Music therapy also provides avenues for communication that can be helpful for those who find it difficult to express themselves in words.

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What can music therapy achieve? 

A music therapist systematically and purposefully designs unique musical experiences to address an individual client's needs and goals. Some of the goals I may address could include the following:

  • Emotional processing, containment and expression

  • Dealing with loss or grief

  • Processing trauma

  • Enhancing resilience

  • Improving self-confidence and self-esteem

  • Developing social skills

  • Creative expression and play

  • Verbal and non-verbal communication

  • Creativity, self-expression and play

  • Growth of self-awareness

  • Sense of agency, initiative, autonomy and the ability to cope with change

  • Attention and concentration

  • Building impulse control and frustration tolerance

  • Strengthening physical aspects such as gross motor and fine motor coordination

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What happens

in a music therapy session? 

A music therapy session will look different with each client. It is client-centred, meaning the session is structured according to the client's needs and interests. 


​A session will include a lot of music making. We may play percussion instruments, sing, listen to music, move to music, improvise new music, write songs or relax to music. There is no pressure to 'perform' or 'get it right'. A client can participate as they choose.


 A session can be structured as a group or one on one.

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