Music Therapy at Work for Veterans

Arizona State University has partnered its Music Therapy Department with a volunteer organization called Guitar 4 Vets. Veterans who have struggled with the challenges of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)  are selected and receive 10 free guitar lessons as well as a new guitar when finished with the lessons.  ASU Music Therapy offers the guitar instruction combined with music therapy activities.  This video showcases the new Phoenix chapter taking place at ASU’s Music Therapy Clinic.  Featured music therapists include Jessica Christensen, MM, MT-BC, Scott Tonkinson, MTS, ASU Music Therapy Masters Program, and Tim McAlee, MTS, ASU Music Therapy Program.


Music Therapy at work in Hospice

Danielle Franklin, MT-BC with Hospice of the Valley and Scott Tonkinson, MTS, at ASU during a recent music therapy session at the Hospice of the Valley – Coronado House in downtown Phoenix.

Music Therapy Showcased on American Idol w/ ASU MT Grad.

The final four contestants from American Idol took a trip to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles with cameras in tow to visit with patients and their families. In this moving video, contestant Kree Harrison got to experience a morning in the Newborn and Infant Critical Care Unit and join with NICU Music Therapist and AMTA member, Tacy Pillow, MMT, MT-BC in a family music therapy session.


Music Therapy Community Forum at WRAMTA Conference

Local Committee members & Conference volunteers:

We will be hosting a “Community Forum” at conference just before opening session (Thursday, April 4. 5:30-6:30pm). At this community forum, we will have well known music therapists from AZ speak about the importance, the power, and the relevancy of music therapy. This event is a wonderful opportunity to help educate members of our community about music therapy.

We want this to be an event that opens people’s eyes and changes their minds about music therapy. However, we can’t do that without your help. We need you to encourage people to come to this event. Business owners, local governmental representatives, school administrators, parents, doctors, related therapists, and anyone whom you think may benefit from learning more about music therapy are the people we want to invite to this. We will be offering snacks and refreshments thanks to support from AZMTA. All of the participants who come to the community forum will also be invited to join the Opening Session afterward as well.

Click on the link or picture below and you can download the pdf file of the flyer.  Please print and post it at your workplace, send them to colleagues, invite potential clients. Help us to make this one more piece of the fantastic conference we are all putting together.

Thanks again for your time and efforts for this cause.

Your Local Chair,

Michael Plunkett



Music Therapy and Autism

Friday, September 14, 2012  – Autism Speaks

Andrew Littlefield, MM, MT-BC is a music therapist and Assistant Director at The George Center for Music Therapy, Inc. in the metro-Atlanta, Georgia area. The George Center has served hundreds of clients in the Atlanta area, many of who are diagnosed on the autism spectrum.

As a music therapist, I have the opportunity to watch people of all ages and abilities connect and grow simply through the act of making and interacting with music.  Music therapy is a fast-growing, research-based field in which a board-certified music therapist uses music-based interventions to address non-music goals with their clients.

Some of the most exciting developments in our field recently have involved music therapy and autism.  Music therapy is a great fit with autism for a variety of reasons:

·     Music encourages social interactions

·     Music is adaptable to people of all abilities

·     Music is multi-modal and engages us across multiple domains (motor, communication, cognitive, etc.)

·     Music provides opportunities for success

·     Music therapy is adaptable to many autism treatment modalities (ABA, DIR-Floortime, SCERTS, and more.)

·     Music is FUN and motivating!

When I tell people I’m a music therapist, I get quite a few raised eyebrows.  With a job title like that, people are understandably curious.  You may have a few questions yourself. To help answer those, I’ve created this handy infographic that answers some common questions regarding music therapy and its applications with autism spectrum disorders!


Click here to view larger!

You can learn more about music therapy through the American Music Therapy Association, find a music therapist near you through the Certification Board for Music Therapists, or learn all about music therapy, tips, tricks, and more at The George Center for Music Therapy Blog!

Using the Fiddle in Music Therapy – Getting Familiar with…Audrey Morse


March 6, 2013


Audrey Morse is a music therapist at an inpatient psychiatric hospital in Midtown Manhattan. She holds a Master’s degree in music therapy from New York University. She began playing the piano when she was 7 years old. She is also quite experienced in playing the fiddle. She was required to choose an orchestra instrument in 4th grade. Her mother chose the violin for her. She played for a year before she saw Itzhak Perlman on television. At that point she realized that she wanted to be a violinist. She also played at Carnegie Hall with the New York Youth Symphony when she was 12.