Inside Music Therapy: Client Perspectives

  • Inside Music Therapy: Client Perspectives
  • Author: Hibben, Julie
  • ISBN: 9781891278082
  • E-ISBN: 9781891278662

Thirty-three fascinating narratives told from inside the music therapy roomsome written by clients, some by parents, and some by therapists and researchersall aimed at giving the client's personal perspective on what transpired there. In contrast to professional case studies which describe what therapists did and what they were thinking, these narratives reveal how music therapy is perceived and evaluated by clients. Basic but long overdue questions are posed: How do they feel about working in music? What meaning do they give to their experiences? How does music therapy affect their lives? Intended for a general audience, every reader, regardless of background, will learn much about how various approaches to music therapy actually work, and how clients respond to them. (1999; 300+pages;).





Table of Contents
Music Therapist Contributors xvii
Preface xix
Introduction xxv
Part I: Clients Write About Their Experiences
1. When Words Are Not Enough
Helen Bowe, Mary Brown Mudge, and Andrea Frisch: Helen and Mary write about using music improvisation in their individual sessions and Andrea. Helens sessions in a psychiatric institution began when she was a teenager struggling with depression and continued when she was discharged. She describes using her flute. Mary tells about making sounds and music that helped her to open to her feelings.
2. Out of the Ashes: Transforming Despair into Hope with Music and Imagery
Cecilia Herzfeld Schulberg: Cecilia, a music therapist, writes of her experience as a client in which she, as a child of Holocaust survivors, encounters and integrates her Holocaust shadow. She describes powerful images that emerged as she listened to music in a deep state of consciousness, aided by the therapists who worked with her over several years.
3. Dealing with Physical Illness: Guided Imagery and Music and the Search for Self
Ann Newel: Ann, a mother of young children and a music therapist, writes of six sessions of in-dept therapy she began when she was being treated for cancer. In her sessions, Ann listened to music in a relaxed state. She describes the imagery that she produced and its relevance to her struggle. By mutual agreement with the therapist who supported her during these private sessions, she does not name the therapist.
4. Tools of Rediscovery: A Year of Guided Imagery and Music
T and Jenny martin Caughman: T present excerpts from the journal he kept during his year of therapy with Jenny. T describes highlights of the imagery he experienced as he listened to music in a state of deep relaxation. The insights he gained from processing the imagery with Jenny helped him over come his fears of memories of sexual abuse.
5. Freedom, Emotions, Togetherness
Guilio Romano and Gabriella Giordanella Perilli: Guilio, in his early twenties, writes about two important sessions that took place during his 7 months of therapy with Gabriella. Guilio describes using improvisation on xylophones and drums to learn to free himself from obsessions, to stay in relationship, and to balance his male and female parts. (Italy)
6. Emerging Through Music: A Journey Toward
Rebecca Buell: Rebecca, now a music therapist, writes about her experience as a client when she was in her early forties and felt herself stuck and not living authentically. She describes the imagery she experienced as she listened to music in a relaxed state.
7. Chaos, Crisis, Development, Cosmos
Mark Nielsen and Torben Moe: Mark, in his late thirties, begins his story with his early music study and precocious entry into a music conservatory. He met Torben when he entered a psychiatric hospital after many years of substance abuse. Mark describes the imagery he created from his deep unconscious as he, with the support of Torben, listened to classical music and the importance of the music sessions in aiding his recovery. (Norway)
8. Experiencing the Music in Guided Imagery and Music
Connie Isenberg-Grzeda: Connie writes about her physical and emotional experience of the music when she is in therapy, deeply relaxed, and listening to classical music. Connie is a music therapist, but she writes as a client in therapy. (Canada)
Part II: Clients Tell About Their Experiences In Their Own Words, Gathered by Their Therapists
9. The Quiet Soldier: Pain and Sickle-Cell Anemia
Joanne V. Loewy: Joanne presents transcripts of an interview with Walter after a session during one of his hospital stays when he began to vocalize and create a song. Walter, a teenager, suffers from the chronic pain crises of sickle-cell anemia. Walter tells of his experience of pain and of how he finds music helpful.
10. Family Day: An Interview with a Family
A. Jeffrey Friedberg and Lauren Obstbaum: Four members of a family, three teenagers and their mother, are interviewed together by co-therapists Jeffrey and Lauren. The family was reunited recently after having been separated for several years. Each family member takes part in group therapy and individual therapeutic music lessons at a community music school. Family members talk about their experience of music improvisation, songs, and discussion in the groups and lessons.
11. Playing Music in the Group
Mary, Lynn Miller, and Eric Miller: Mary writes of her participation in a music therapy group co-led by Lynn and Eric at a halfway house. Mary, 38 years old, has a history of psychotic episodes and depression. She describes her personal response to the group improvisations.
12. Jazzy the Wonder Squirrel
Jazzy, Leslie L Hunter, and Donna W. Polen: Jazzy tells the story of his interest in synthesizers and composing through an interview with Leslie and Donna, his former and present music therapists. Jazzy, now 19 years old, began therapy using improvisation at the synthesizer or piano in sessions at a special school for learning-disabled and emotionally disturbed children. He tells of how his skills at the synthesizer are welcomed at his current high school and he shares the lyrics of some songs he has composed.
13. Singing My Way Through It: Facing the Cancer, Darkness, and Fear
Maria Logis and Alan Turry : In writing about therapy that began when her cancer was diagnosed. Maria includes some of the songs she improvised with Alans' piano support. Maria and Alan wrote this narrative together as part of their ongoing therapy.
14. Many Stories, Many Songs
Diane Austin : Diane presents words gathered from eight or more adult clients in her practice. Some of her clients struggle with histories of substance abuse, eating disorders, or abusive or disturbed parents. Three clients tell in interview, poems, and prose of their experience using improvised playing and singing and of the feelings and images that emerged in the playing. Diane also presents both a collage of clients words about singing in therapy, taken from her journals, and several poems about her clients.
15. Rachel Describes Learning About Her Physiological Response
Eric Miller: Eric presents Rachel's written responses to his questions about their 10 listening and biofeedback therapy sessions in a healing center. Rachel, a musician, suffers from Raynaud's disease, a condition of poor circulation to extremities, which become numb and cold. Eric includes graphs showing Rachel's physiological responses during various aural stimuli, such as her favorite music and environmental sounds.
16. A Tape from Lilly
Madelaine Ventre: Madelaine offers excerpts from an audiotape Lilly prepared for their last session together. On the tape, Lilly, a survivor of childhood abuse, presents songs, readings, and personal celebrations of their sessions during which she shared the imagery that she generated while listening to classical music in an internally focused state.
17. Music of the Spheres
Colin Lee: Colin presents Charles' words about his therapy and his experience of the improvisational piano duet in session 21 from the 2 years they worked together. Charles had human immunodeficiency virus. Music excerpts from the two improvisations in that session are included.
18. Peg's Century of Music
Sally A. Hough: Sally offers Peg's words, both verbatim interviews and monologues constructed from comments she has heard Peg make many times. Peg is a 92 year-old nursing-home resident. Sally interlaces the narrative with descriptions of Peg's music experience in the home; these include sessions in which familiar music is recreated to stimulate physical movement, instrument playing, singing, and conversation.
19. Review of Guided Imagery and Music Sessions: William's Story
William and Allison Short: To write this narrative, Alison and William, a midlife businessman, reviewed Alisons transcripts from parts of four nonconsecutive therapy sessions (chosen because they contained imagery of Williams relationship to his wife) that took place more than 2 years earlier. William's imagery (evoked during relaxed listening), some of his words during the discussion after the music in the four sessions, and his feelings on revisiting the material of his sessions are included. Transcripts of William's thoughts about the therapy taped at their recent meeting conclude the narrative. (Australia)
Part III: Client Experiences Are Written About by Parents
20. Sharing Sessions with John
Anna Jones and Amelia Oldfield: Anna described participating with her 3-year-old son John, who is autistic with sever learning disabilities, in the first year of sessions with Amelia. Anna tells the story of John's birth and development and describes John's reactions to the music and movement games and playful improvisations of the sessions in a developmental center. (Great Britain)
21. Singing A Special Song
Christina Rago and Julie Hibben: Christina recounts her daughter Franny's engagement with music over her 15 years. In the 3 ½ years of private sessions with Julie that were part of her individual education program, Franny sang familiar songs, role-played, and improvised at the piano. Franny has developmental delays and mild cerebral palsy.
22. Three Stories About Suzuki Piano Education
Laura, Catherine I. Shaffer, Victoria Haskins, and Mary Ann Froehlich: Laura, Catherine, and Victoria write of their childrens piano lessons with Mary Ann, a music therapist and piano teacher. All three children (two are teenagers and one is 10 years old) have struggled with learning disabilities. The parents describe how the music-making in individual lessons and periodic group classes harness the children's auditory strengths.
Part IV: Client Experiences Are Inferred by Therapists Through Multiple Means
23. Rose
Michele Forinash and Sally McKnight: Michele and Sally have prepared a study of Rose, a 90-year-old nursing-home resident who is blind and has chronic schizophrenia and Alzheimers disease. The writers, who have worked with Rose for a total of over 5 years (first Michele, then Sally), analyzed separately two videotaped sessions. In reporting the two representative sessions, they include descriptions of Rose's responses to familiar songs and they present soliloquies they have constructed on Rose's behalf on the basis of their repeated observations of her in and out of therapy.
24. The Special Place of Music for a Multiply Disabled Girl
Barbara Crowe: Barbara presents Tammy, a severely multiply disabled teenager whom she, as supervisor of student therapists, has observed in therapy for over 3 years. Barbara tells of Tammy's responses to favorite songs and music games in one of her sessions at a music therapy clinic. Barbara constructs a soliloquywhat Tammy might say if she herself could speakfrom her own understanding of Tammy and from extensive interviews with Tammy's mother.
25. Sometimes There Are No Reasons: Marco's Song
Mary Rykov: Mary reproduces a song written with 19-year-old Marco during his hospitalizations after the recurrence of his brain tumor. Mary reports his mothers words about the song, which is a permanent representation of Marco's thoughts and feelings. (Canada)
26. Discovering Meaning in Kelly's Nonverbal Expressions
Suzanne Nowikas: In separate interviews, Suzanne asked Kelly's mother and her co-therapist to watch a videotape of Kelly's thirty-sixth session in a music therapy clinic. Suzanne transcribes their comments about Kelly's experience and includes descriptions of Kelly's engagement (humming, playing percussion instruments, and listening) with the music. Kelly's music, brought back from week to week through Suzannes piano improvisations, is included in the narrative. In a further attempt to get as close to Kelly's own voice as possible, Suzanne intersperses the narrative with soliloquies that are her interpretation of what 9-year-old Kelly, who has had frequent seizures for most of her life, would say if she could speak.
27. Experiences in a Pediatric Nursing Home
Michelle Glidden: Michelle asked the teachers, therapists, and a parent of the profoundly multiply handicapped children, teens, and young adults who live and receive instruction in a pediatric nursing home what meaning the songs and adapted instruments she brings to them weekly has for these students. Michelles report represents many students experiences of the music, inferred by the spokespersons who regularly observe their behaviors.
28. Lisa: The Experience of a child with Multiple Disabilities
Barbara L. Wheeler: Barbara describes 4 years of therapy for Lisa, first in Barbara's private practice and then in a small group school setting. Lisa was between 9 and 13 years old when these sessions, in which they used familiar songs and movement and percussion-playing took place. Interspersed with descriptions of Lisas behavior during the sessions are short soliloquies Barbara wrote on Lisas behalf, saying what she believes Lisa would say if she could speak her thoughts. Barbara also reports an interview with Lisas mother, who participated in the early sessions.
29. Parallel Experiences
Janice Dvorkin and Roia Rafieyan: Janice and Roia write about Pat's experience of therapy in which piano improvisation is the primary mode of communication and expression. Pat's sessions take place in his residence, a developmental center. Roia is his therapist and Janice is Roias mentor and supervisor. Since 30-year-old Pat is developmentally delayed and nonverbal, the authors describe his behavior in the sessions and make inferences about his experience. Using the concept of parallel process, they suggest that Pat's feelings about the therapy are parallel to Roias concurrent feelings about supervision.
30. Henrys Transition Through Music
Rika Ikuno: Rika presents the study of 8-year-old Henry during an 8-minute individual segment of therapy in a group therapy school setting with three other autistic boys. During the segment, she and the co-therapist encourage Henry to sit on the piano bench and play or sing with Rikas improvised music. (Henry's melodies are included.) Rika reports Henrys behavior during this short segment and interprets Henrys state of mind in the form of imaginative soliloquy, since he is not capable of commenting on his internal experience. A component of Rika's study is a review of the videotape of this segment with Henry's mother and the co-therapist; their interpretation of Henry's experience is included with her own. (Japan)
Part V: Client Words About Experience Are Gathered by Researchers
31. Tales from the Therapy Room
Dorit Amir: Dorit interviewed three clients (of three different therapists) and presents their words under topics that emerged as meaningful. Ben, a recently paralyzed 10-year-old in a rehabilitation center, talks about how song-writing in a small group encouraged group members to say things they would not ordinarily say. Karen, a middle-aged music therapist, describes the life impact of the imagery she experienced while listening to music in therapy. Lyn, a midlife secretary about to remarry, describes improvisation in her private sessions. (Israel)
32. Feelings of Doubt, Hope, and Faith
Henk Smeijsters: Henk, a qualitative researcher, reports the experience of Ingrid, who entered therapy because she had felt depressed since her husbands death 3 years earlier. Henk presents the self-reports Ingrid wrote after each session and her words, transcribed from sessions when she improvised on various instruments. During treatment, Henk analyzed session videotapes and self-reports and gave feedback to Ingrid and the therapist. Henk concludes with a synthesis of the meaning in Ingrids words. (The Netherlands)
33. Pivotal Moments in Guided Imagery and Music
Denise Erdonmez Grocke: Denise presents interviews with seven people who were asked to describe moments of insight in their individual therapy sessions. They experienced in-depth therapy in which they listened to music and shared the imagery that came from their deep unconscious. After presenting direct quotes from the interviews, Denise offers a distillation or review of their content. (Australia)
References 307